By :- Ms. Renu Puri
The polycystic ovary disease or PCOD is a very prevalent health issue all over the world with 1 in 5 women getting affected by it. It occurs in the form of cysts in the ovaries. There are a number of complications that are evident in the body as a consequence of PCOD like irregular menstrual cycle, too much facial hair and in extreme cases infertility. It requires proper tests like laboratory and blood tests, hormonal tests and procedures for a correct diagnosis. This disease has no permanent cure and managing PCOD is a lifelong process through permanent lifestyle changes and inculcating the right kind of diet.
The way to remain healthy with this condition is to keep a very disciplined life style, both in terms of diet as well as exercise.
Required Dietary Modifications in PCOD
- Foods like whole grains and whole wheat which have low glycemic index should form the major portion of the meal and should be included in the diet.
- The emphasis should always be to have more and more fiber rich food in the diet which gives our body its energy to carry out its daily tasks.
- Another step is to include fresh fruits and vegetables in the diet. They contain natural sugar and fiber that give energy to the body without increasing the sugar levels in the body.
- The intake of dairy and dairy products should be reduced to the minimum amounts as they increase the insulin content of the body and can cause insulin imbalance.
- Herbs like methi, cinnamon and flax seeds should be taken regularly to control the amount of insulin in the body.
- Refined and processed sugar and its derivatives should be completely excluded from the diet as they cause the insulin levels to spike dangerously.
- Lean animal protein like fish and chicken should be eaten in small quantities but red meat should be avoided on the whole.
- Fats both saturated and hydrogenated should be excluded from the diet. These fats come in ready to eat snacks and fried food and hence all such kinds of food groups should be completely avoided.
How to inculcate the newer patterns
- Regularly exercising for 30- 60 minute a day is one of the most effective ways to control PCOD.
- Emphasis should be to bring modifications in the diet as seamlessly as possible. Hence gradually bring about the changes
- Also, instead of changing our food items or menus completely, one can replace some ingredients of a regular, familiar recipe and make it a PCOD friendly meal.
- Junk food should be completely avoided.
- The importance of a regulated and balanced diet should never be underestimated in case of a disease like PCOD.
PCOD is a disease that requires permanent changes in our diet which can be very challenging for an individual as the eating patterns are very deeply engrained in our lives. The guidance of a diet counsellor is one of the most effective ways to make this shift a pleasant one and long lasting. Only a trained professional can help and guide a person to inculcate and imbibe the necessary changes to make it a part of the daily life.