My PCOS Diet: Let’s be Real

I try to be as honest as possible on this blog. I love sharing the good, the bad, the ugly, the happy, the in-betweens…

So I am taking today to be 100% honest about my PCOS diet as of late:

As much as I hate to admit it, my PCOS diet has basically gone out the window these past few months. And I have felt it physically. I’ve felt it in my energy level, my mood, and mostly, my weight. I’m not sure why I’ve let the diet go by the wayside. I know I feel best when I follow a healthy PCOS diet. I guess I’ve let my physical and emotional exhaustion during IVF be my excuse. Leading up to and during our IUIs, and when we first started IVF, I was doing better with my diet than ever. But somewhere along the way, I just fell off the bandwagon.

Research has proven that a proper PCOS diet can give us some control and power over what happens with our bodies. Recent research has even proven that diet and lifestyle changes are more effective than Metformin in managing PCOS.

I’ve known these things, so why  did I completely give up a PCOS diet after sticking to it for so long? Maybe I felt like it let me down… Following a PCOS diet did not help me ovulate, and it did not help me get pregnant. But while I was sticking to a proper PCOS diet, I did not gain weight. I started slowly gaining weight while we were pursuing fertility treatments, but the moment I threw in the towel with my PCOS diet, the pounds starting piling on rapidly. I was gaining weight (am gaining weight) overnight, almost literally. This tells me that the diet was doing a lot more than I was giving it credit for.

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So I now have new motivation to stick to a healthy PCOS diet:

  • I desperately want to have a healthy pregnancy.
  • I desperately want to give birth to a healthy baby (or two healthy babies… fingers crossed!)
  • I want to feel good about my body during pregnancy. This is something I have not felt in a long time.
  • I want proper eating habits to become a part of me. I want them to be second-nature so that I can pass those same habits along to our children.
  • I want to be a healthy mama! I want to be able to be active and happy with my children. PCOS does not have to take that away from me… no need to let it!

Basic guidelines of a proper PCOS diet… way simplified

  • Do away with gluten.
  • Do away with dairy.
  • Stick to foods with a low glycemic index, or glycemic load.
  • Keep a close eye on carbs (make sure they are complex, and do not eat too many).
  • Load up on protein and fiber.
  • Avoid highly processed foods.
  • No added sugar.
  • Eat all the veggies, lean (and hormone-free) meats, and whole foods you can.

“Regular” weight loss programs (ex: Weight Watchers) do not work for those of us with PCOS. They just don’t. Programs like Weight Watchers (which is great for many people without PCOS) do not take into account glycemic load or carbohydrates. Those of us with PCOS desperately need a good balance of carbs, protein, and fats. Food really can be our medicine. It just takes planning, discipline, and self-control!

After a few months of feeling fat, sick, and tired, I am ready to return to my real food, PCOS diet. I am hoping now that I’ve seen and felt the impact of NOT following a good PCOS diet, I will be able to stick to it this time around! I’ve run out of excuses not to.

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