There is an exponential growth in the number of women suffering from PCOS in India (polycystic ovary syndrome). The main causes of PCOS are unhealthy eating, unhealthy lifestyle and an inactive routine. The symptoms of PCOS begin right after a woman hits her puberty and may continue until early adulthood.
Early diagnosis of PCOS is the right way to prevent it. It is important to know the key points of PCOS as women with PCOS are at a higher risk of developing diabetes, high blood pressure and other health complications such as infertility. This problem is mostly seen in women between 15 to 40 years of age.
PCOS Statistics in India
A study by AIIMS shows that about 20-25% of Indian women of childbearing age suffer from PCOS. While 60% of women with PCOS are obese, 35-50% have a fatty liver. About 70% have insulin resistance, 60-70% have a high level of androgen and 40-60% have glucose intolerance.
In studies in South India and Maharashtra in 2018 say, the prevalence of PCOS is 9.13% and 22.5%, respectively.
Also, survey 2019 says that every 1 in 5 women suffers from PCOS and out of 10 PCOS suffering women, 6 are teenagers.
Know what to eat – PCOS diet
The way PCOS affects our body is complicated. PCOS symptoms can be controlled to a large extent. To combat the symptoms of PCOS, go for exercise and a healthy diet as it will regulate your menstrual periods and lower your blood sugar levels. Insulin and weight play a crucial role in the PCOS diet. Here is a list of foods to eat when you have PCOS.
High fiber food helps slow down digestion and reduces the impact of insulin levels in the blood. The fibrous foods are:
- Vegetables: broccoli, cauliflower, sweet potatoes, carrots, cucumber, tomatoes, zucchini, spinach, kale, beans, sprouts
- Fruits – berries, apple, banana, kiwi, grapes, peach
Beans, beef, yogurt, fish, tofu, nuts, low-fat milk and chicken are a good source of protein for women suffering from PCOS.
Low glycemic index (GI) diet
The diet includes whole grains, legumes, nuts, unprocessed and low-carbohydrates food. Low GI food is digested slowly which means the insulin levels do not rise as quickly as it does with carbohydrates.
DASH stands for Dietary Approach to Stop Hypertension. High saturated fats and sugar are not in the league of the DASH diet.
If we talk about Bollywood celebrities, they always have this pressure of looking beautiful and fit. What do you think they don’t fight this battle of health issues in their lives? THEY DO! In a very popular show, Koffee with Karan, a well-known celebrity Sara Ali Khan revealed about her battle with PCOS. She had gained 96 kgs due to PCOS, also called PCOD.
Foods to avoid during PCOS
A woman with PCOS must avoid these foods:
- Carbohydrates such as pastries, white bread
- Carbonated or aerated drinks
- Sugary drinks
- Processed or frozen foods
- Excess red meat such as pork or hamburgers
Along with dietary changes, there are some lifestyle changes which can help women manage PCOS condition. Get going with physical activities for weight loss. Also, reduce stress by taking proper sleep and find time for self-care.
Better consult a gynecologist for PCOS
Consult a gynecologist when you observe any of the above symptoms such as irregular periods, excess hair fall, acne and weight gain. Get a balanced healthy diet and increase physical activity to maintain a healthy weight. Some medicines help ovulate, reduce acne and control hair fall. Talk to the gynecologist to treat PCOS before it leads to further complications.
Disclaimer: Tips mentioned in the blog are for information purposes only and should not be considered as professional medical advice. Always consult your doctor or a professional healthcare provider if you have any specific questions about any medical matter.