Friday, February 26, 2010

Guest Post with Tania Tod: Nutrition for Women Diagnosed with PCOS

It is my pleasure to introduce you to Tania Tod. Tania has started a blog about pregnancy and preconception time in relation with fertility, nutrition, exercise and other issues. Today, she is going to be talking about nutrition for women diagnosed with PCOS.  Please welcome Tania to One Blessed Mama of Boys!

One of the most important parts of managing and living with PCOS is better nutrition. Nutrition for women diagnosed with PCOS plays a vital role in the quality of life a woman will have and directly increases the chance for those trying to conceive . In certain studies, women that lose as little as 5% body weight can experience an insulin stabilization, decrease in levels of progesterone and a regulation of menstrual cycles.

By incorporating healthy lifestyle changes, consuming a well balanced diet which includes vegetables, healthy fats, lean protein and limited carbohydrates, a woman can successfully manage symptoms of PCOS-related insulin resistance . Lean proteins in the diet should consist of egg whites, nuts, soy-based products, fish, skinless poultry and nuts. Healthy fats are contained olive oil, canola, sunflower seeds and oils, peanuts, corn and flaxseed.
A PCOS diet should limit carbohydrates, but this does not mean all carbs are bad and should be completely avoided. Nutrition for women diagnosed with PCOS can include the following carbohydrates such as whole grain breads, quinoa, couscous, brown rice and barley. For a woman trying to conceive, these incorporations into the diet can also increase fertility and make it much easier for her to become pregnant.
For women with PCOS, nutritional changes can be very important in treating the accompanying insulin resistance. Experts recommend a balance of 35% protein, 35% fat and 30% carbohydrates, which can be done by dietary changes but does not have to be considered a “diet.” The balanced diet will help stabilize insulin levels and control cravings which can lead the woman to over eat and gain weight.
There are various different types of protein available; most sources come from plants or animals. Plant protein is more beneficial to the woman’s diet than an animal source which contains unnecessary fats which can increase cholesterol levels. A balanced diet must include fats, but the fats need to be polyunsaturated and monounsaturated in order to be good for the diet and healthy for the body.
Exercise alone is not enough for a woman suffering from PCOS; it only treats the weight gain. It is necessary for a woman suffering from PCOS to understand the importance nutrition plays in her life and that of her condition. In order to have a decent quality of life, control weight gain and keep hormones and insulin levels in check, a woman needs to take all things into consideration and eat right, exercise and follow a nutrition plan.

When a diagnosis of PCOS has been made in a woman, there are many things that can be done to manage the condition. PCOS-related infertility is a condition which can be treated and conquered with the proper diet and a woman becoming educated about the situation all of which increases awareness. Being provided with the right information, making proactive decisions and incorporating certain lifestyle changes into the equation can help a woman succeed at the goal of becoming pregnant.

Tania has a great wealth of knowledge over at her new blog- Trying To Conceive! You would be doing yourself a great disservice if you did not head over and check it out!

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