CAN KETO IMPROVE YOUR PCOS SYMPTOMS?
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is a common condition that affects approximately 10-20% of reproductive aged women.
PCOS is a endocrine and metabolic condition that presents with many symptoms such as:
- Hirsutism- male pattern hair growth
- Weight Gain
- Irregular Periods, Heavy or absent of periods
Some women may have the syndrome yet never know until they try to conceive. Some women may not experience weight gain or increased hair growth yet suffer from irregular periods and acne. It is important to understand we are all very different and how a condition presents in one person maybe completely different in another with the same condition.
Insulin plays a significant role in PCOS and many women have elevated insulin levels which then causes a vicious cycle as this elevated insulin, and another hormone, encourages our ovaries to make more and more testosterone (males hormones, women have them too just not as much!) which then leads to symptoms such as increased hair growth, irregular periods and the increase insulin levels leads to weight gain in many PCOS women.
PCOS is a very common syndrome that is often poorly managed in our society. Most women will be placed on the OCP- Oral Contraceptive Pill and given a medication called Metformin to help manage blood sugar levels and this approach will help suppress the symptoms but not treat them as such.
Diet can play a huge role in addressing many issues associated with PCOS. Simply put, decreasing carbohydrate intake and protein, if the women has a high protein intake, can reduce insulin levels. As we know elevated insulin levels and insulin resistance plays a very significant role in the PCOS condition so focusing on a low carbohydrate intake can help decrease insulin levels and reduce symptoms.
So how much carbohydrate should you have if you have PCOS?
This varies greatly! Our standard government recommendations are 200-300g per day. Women with PCOS often find they feel better and get great results by limiting their carb intake to 50-100 grams per day.
What can you do to help decrease insulin and increase insulin sensitivity to decrease symptoms of PCOS?
- Decrease refined carbohydrate intake and focus on getting your carb intake from vegetables or low GI Carbs.
- Reduce your carbohydrate intake to 100g and under. Even better would be the Ketogenic Diet which is under 50g per day!
- Include a good quality Zinc and Magnesium supplement into your routine
- Increase exercise
- Have a moderate protein intake as high protein can increase insulin levels also.
At Ketogenic Kitchen, we focus on low carb, moderate protein and high fat diet to ensure insulin levels stay low!!