Many people do not know about PCOD, though it is a common medical condition among women of reproductive age. One in every ten women has it. Polycystic ovary disease (PCOD) causes metabolism and hormonal imbalance due to which you have irregular periods and pile on weight which is hard to lose.

Dr. Hrishikesh Pai, one of the leading IVF specialist in India, says, “A high number of women discover they have PCOD when they have issues conceiving. It is usually detected while undergoing ultrasound or blood tests.”

He further states that this condition has to be managed through medications and lifestyle changes. If you or your loved ones suffer from PCOD, this article will surely help. Here, we have discussed the dietary tips helpful in managing PCOD.

But first, let’s understand what PCOD is?

PCOD is a medical condition where the ovaries produce immature eggs, which turn into small cysts over time. Due to this, there is hormonal imbalance leading to diabetes, acne, excessive hair growth, and infertility.

There is no cure for PCOD, but with medications, alternative therapies, and lifestyle changes, doctors can control PCOD. Apart from this, women having PCOD who are typically overweight are advised to exercise regularly to keep their weight in check.

What are the causes and symptoms of PCOD?

Basically, there is no exact cause for PCOD. Medical experts are of the opinion that it may run in the family and some women are more prone to get it.

Generally, many cases of PCOD go undetected due to a lack of symptoms. Erratic menses is the most common symptom of PCOD. Others include infertility, oily skin, acne, migraine, weight gain, excessive hair growth, mood swings, and depression.

If you have any of the above symptoms or face difficulty getting pregnant, you should consult a PCOD specialist, like Dr. Hrishikesh Pai. He is the Founder and Director of Bloom IVF Group, an exclusive and premier chain of IVF centre in India.

Does diet play an essential part in managing PCOD?

There is no permanent cure for PCOD. However, with proper diet and exercise, it can be controlled. This can be vouched by women who have experienced remarkable improvements.

Given below are some helpful dietary tips for women suffering from PCOD.

According to experts, women having PCOD must increase the intake of antibiotics, complex carbohydrates, prebiotics, probiotics, and low-glycemic-index food. Further, they should stay away from simple carbohydrates, honey, sugar, jaggery, and deep-fried foods as women suffering from PCOD are insulin resistant.

Also, as PCOD makes one susceptible to water retention and constipation, you need to be careful with your water intake.

No doubt, managing PCOD is difficult. But following your doctor’s advice, regular workouts, and eating healthy is the perfect mantra for controlling PCOD.

Check out the dietary tips below:

Refrain from having red meat

Stay away from red meat such as pork, steak, hamburgers, and processed meat, including sausages, hot dogs, etc. as it can increase the chances of infertility. You can have lean meat like fish or chicken in its place.

Avoid eating saturated and hydrogenated fats

Many foods include saturated fats, but it is found in high levels in dairy and animal products and baked foods. So, try avoiding them. It elevates cholesterol levels and increases calorie consumption.

Stay away from refined cereals and sugar

Before buying any grocery product, please check the labels. Refined cereals such as sooji, maida, white rice, and mass-produced pastries are not beneficial and healthy for PCOD patients. It’s better to stay away from them. Further, refrain from having sodas, energy drinks, honey, jaggery, and sugar.

Choose to have a diabetic diet

A high percentage of women with PCOD are insulin resistant. Dr. Hrishikesh Pai, a PCOD specialist, recommends a diabetic diet that is low in carbohydrates and processed food and high in fibre to them.  Also, having food with a low glycemic index, such as whole grains, whole wheat, brown rice, etc., is beneficial.

Have seeds

Incorporating seeds in your diet can do wonders to your health. They keep your hormones in check. So, make it a point to include sesame seeds and flaxseeds in your diet, but not more than 20 grams per day.

Eat frequent small meals

As PCOD patients are prone to weight gain and water retention, Dr. Hrishikesh Pai, an internationally acclaimed IVF specialist in India, advises them to have small meals at short intervals and not overload themselves with water.

PCOD patients should have fresh fruits or multigrain bread sandwiches with tomatoes and cucumbers for breakfast. While for lunch, they should have bran roti in place of regular roti.

It is very confusing to understand what to eat and what to avoid. To simplify things, incorporate the below-given food into your diet.

Dairy products: Have toned or skimmed milk. You can also have paneer, tofu, soy milk, and yogurt.

Pulses: Whole pulses, yellow and green moong, beans, and chana dal.

Cereals: Oats, barley, whole wheat, oatmeal, muesli, bran flakes, quinoa, multigrain bread, and whole wheat porridge.

Fruits: Apples, oranges, berries, watermelons, papaya, peaches, plums, and pears.

Vegetables: Spinach, lettuce, carrots, mushroom, onions, tomatoes, celery, cauliflower, peas, peppers, and cucumbers.

Seeds: Almonds, flaxseeds, walnuts, and sesame seeds.

Dealing with PCOD may be frustrating at times. However, having a PCOD-friendly diet helps reduce the symptoms and alleviate the mood.

If it does not help and the symptoms persist, you should visit a doctor. In case you are having issues conceiving due to PCOD, you can consult Dr. Hrishikesh Pai, one of the best IVF doctor in Mumbai.

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