7 Tips | Diet Plan for Weight Loss with PCOD
Polycystic Ovarian Disease abbreviated as PCOD is a hormonal disorder that affects women across most ages. Infertility, irregular menstrual cycles, excessive facial hair and multiple cysts on the ovaries are indicators of PCOD. This hormonal disorder is found in 70% women who have difficulty ovulating, thus leading to infertility.
Women with PCOD are seen to produce more testosterone (a male hormone), which is responsible for symptoms like excessive hair growth, acne and male pattern baldness. The high levels of circulating testosterone prevent the ovaries from releasing an egg every month thus stalling conception. Though the actual cause of PCOD is unknown, the risk it poses is very well apparent. Women suffering from PCOD are at a greater risk of developing:
- Type 2 Diabetes and insulin resistance
- Hypertension, high blood lipids and cholesterol, leading to atherosclerosis and associated heart diseases
- Obesity and weight problems
- Infertility, high risk pregnancies and increased chances of miscarriages
- Liver disease
- Emotional and psychological disturbances
They also develop an increased resistance to insulin, which predisposes them to the risk of developing diabetes. Insulin resistance (IR) is a condition in which the cells of the body become resistant to the effects of insulin i.e. the normal response to a given amount of insulin is reduced. This resistance is to both, the insulin produced in the body as well as insulin injections. Also, Women with PCOD are generally overweight or obese and have trouble shedding unwanted weight. This is because, weight gain, insulin resistance, heart troubles all the symptoms are that are linked to each other.
Unfortunately there is no cure that can assure complete freedom from for PCOD. However, medical, lifestyle, behavioral modification along with a Diet Plan for Weight Loss can help reduce the risks and resolve the symptoms. Medical management of PCOD generally involves reducing the production of male hormones, managing insulin resistance and treating the associated symptoms.
Also read our blog on Menopause: Nutrition For Healthy Transition
Along with medical management, nutritional intervention with a diet plan for weight loss shall plays a crucial role in managing PCOD. Nutritional Therapy aims at treating insulin resistance, associated symptoms and most importantly aim at weight loss. Should one become a victim of PCOD, here’
- Small meals: Eating small frequent meals instead of large calorically dense meals. Healthy snacks in between meals help curb cravings and a sustained rise in blood sugar.
- Carbohydrates: The type of carbohydrate in the diet directly impacts blood sugar levels and weight. Simple sugars are responsible for spikes in sugar levels, increases levels of triglycerides and leads to weight gain. Therefore choose low glycemic index carbohydrates and whole grains as they help improve insulin resistance, lower blood sugar and cholesterol levels.
- Fibre: Eat foods rich in fibre to control blood sugar levels and lower cholesterol levels. In addition it also promotes a feeling of satiety (fullness) reducing the quantity of food eaten. Foods such as cereals, pulses, nuts, fruits and vegetables, legumes, oats etc. are rich in fibre are low in glycemic index.
- Protein: Adding ample of protein to your diet help in losing weight and when coupled with carbohydrates it controls the spike in blood sugar levels caused by carbohydrates. It is ideal to consume protein during every snack or meal. A few protein rich foods are like chicken, meat, eggs, milk, yoghurt, nuts, legumes, etc.
- Omega 3 Fatty Acid: This fatty acid is known to lower cholesterol levels and protects the heart. Women with PCOD have been found to have a higher rate of oxidative stress. Omega 3 helps relieve this stress. Foods that include Omega-3 Fatty Acids include walnuts, egg yolk, flaxseed, canola oil and fish (especially Salmon and Tuna).
- Antioxidants– Vitamin A, C and E also help relieve oxidative stress. Fruits and vegetables of different colors, nuts, lemons, olive oil, flaxseed oil etc are rich in antioxidants.
In order to make life a little more simple for your, we have put together a sample PCOD / PCOS Diet Plan for Weight Loss, that can help you being with managing PCOD effectively.
- Eggs and paratha with a glass of milk or a fruits can be perfect mix of carbohydrates protein and fiber, for breakfast.
- A fruit or glass of lemon juice with a handful of walnuts, almonds or peanuts makes for an ideal snack.
- A mixed salad or unsweetened yoghurt can be a great accompaniment with lunch.
- A fruit after lunch helps manage blood sugar levels.
- A light pulse or legume salad like rajmah, moong, chickpeas fulfils protein requirements as well as fiber and also makes for a tangy evening snack.
- Dinner should ideally be light. A bowl of cereal or oats with nuts and fruits or even a light soup could do the trick here.
- A cup of green tea before sleeping can supply antioxidants that your body needs in order to relax better, as you sleep.
However, in your battle with PCOD, there are a few things that are a complete no-no. Let’s have a look:
- Regular intake of soft drinks, candies, cakes, fruit drinks, cookies and other sugar laden foods.
- Processed and packaged foods. These contain high amounts of both sugar and salt which are both catalysts for weight gain.
- Excessive saturated fat from your diet like butter, margarine, cream, red meat, and mayonnaise. Fried snacks and other junk food must be avoided as much as possible.
- Soy and soy products. Women with PCOD who struggle with infertility should avoid or limit soy products, as it contains high amounts of phytoestrogen, which could affect reproduction.
- Alcohol and smoking should preferably be steered clear from as they PCOD or no PCOD, both of these do much damage to your system.
To sum it up, PCOD is more of a lifestyle disease rather than hereditary and with an improved lifestyle and healthy eating habits by adhering to a Diet Plan for Weight Loss, PCOD could soon be a thing of the past.