PCOS Diet: Foods to Eat and Avoid

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder that affects how a woman’s ovaries work during their childbearing years. The condition causes hormonal imbalance and metabolism problems. A person suffering from the health condition might experience infrequent or prolonged menstrual periods. Accumulation of a small collection of fluid (follicles) in the ovaries can make it harder to release eggs and get pregnant.

Sometimes PCOS develops later, while in some cases the condition occurs during puberty. These signs and symptoms can help diagnose the condition early.

– Infrequent, irregular, or prolonged periods

– Excess of hair growth on the face and body, acne, and male-pattern baldness.

The condition can also cause other health challenges such as depression, diabetes, and cardiovascular problems. Studies have shown there are a few self-care treatments as well for the health condition. One can also reduce the impact of PCOS through diet therapy.


In this post, we will discuss the foods to eat and avoid when following the PCOS Diet plan. Before that, it is important to know how the therapy affects PCOS.

How Diet affects PCOS?

Weight Loss and Insulin Production and resistance are the two ways in which diet can affect PCOS condition.

Production of high insulin levels in young women with PCOS condition can cause ovaries to produce more amounts of male hormones (testosterone). Also, the risk of developing diabetes is high with insulin resistance.

Consuming foods rich in fiber and low in refined carbohydrates can help lower insulin levels. 60 minutes of exercise every day can also improve your PCOS as it reduces insulin resistance. By making certain changes to the diet plan and meeting a person’s nutritional needs, we can reduce the risks associated with PCOS condition.  

Foods to Eat

There is no standard diet for PCOS, but following the shared diet, the practice can be highly beneficial for the PCOS. Here are the three forms of Diet foods that may help people with PCOS manage and reduce the symptoms:

Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) Diet: Doctors recommend this form of diet therapy to lower the impact of heart diseases and control high blood pressure.

A DASH Diet focusses on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and foods that are high in saturated fat and sugar. Add Nuts and flaxseeds, sunflower seeds to your diet, Poultry and fish, peanuts, chickpeas, and fruits. Avoid a diet too high in carbs.

Anti-inflammatory Diet: Inflammation may become a root cause of the syndrome. Add Anti-inflammatory foods to the daily routine, such as Olive oil, berries, fatty fish, tomatoes, leafy greens.

A low Glycemic Index (GI) Diet: Following a low Glycemic Index (GI) diet is beneficial for health as it restores irregular periods, reduces inflammation, lower cholesterol levels, controls insulin levels to rise, and improves insulin sensitivity with PCOS patients.

Add nuts, seeds, fruits, unprocessed and low-carbohydrate foods to the diet. The low-GI diet also consists of whole grains, legumes, and starchy vegetables.

Make sure that your naturopath has added these to the diet structure as well:

– high-fiber, natural and unprocessed foods

– Green Vegetables (broccoli, spinach, and cauliflower)

– nuts (pine nuts walnuts, almonds, and pistachios)

– spices (turmeric and cinnamon)

– fatty fish (salmon, tuna, sardines, and mackerel)

– dried beans, lentils, and other legumes

– fruits (red grapes, blueberries, blackberries, and cherries)

– olive oil, avocados, and coconuts

Foods to Avoid

We have listed some of the unhealthy food items that must be avoided in the PCOS condition. These include:

  • Avoid mass-produced pastries and white bread.
  • Fried foods
  • Sugary beverages
  • Processed meats
  • Solid fats
  • Excess red meat

Lifestyle Changes

There are some other natural treatments and lifestyle changes that can manage the condition. Apart from keeping a check on the diet plan, one must also keep doing physical activities as it can lead to the following benefits:

  • weight loss
  • better insulin metabolism
  • regular periods
  • reduced hair growth
  • reduced cholesterol levels

When to Visit a Nearby Doctor

At times, people do not consider the symptoms of PCOs as serious enough unless they have trouble conceiving. It is important to be aware of the conditions and their symptoms to discuss with a doctor on time. The Common symptoms of PCOS include:

  • acne
  • extra hair growth
  • weight gain
  • oily skin
  • irregular periods
  • discomfort in the pelvic area
  • difficulty conceiving

Anyone experiencing these symptoms, seek medical help, and discuss your concerns with a renowned doctor. There has been found no cure for the condition, but following the above-listed health tips can reduce their symptoms. Manage your PCOS condition by maintaining a healthy weight and eating lean proteins and practicing naturopathy treatments.

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