Are Carbs Bad for PCOS? (Expert Answer)

Short Answer: Carbs are not bad for PCOS, but some types of carbs are better than others. Because they have fiber, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytochemicals that can help balance your hormones, lower your insulin resistance, and reduce inflammation.

PCOS is a condition that affects your ovaries and hormones.

In PCOS, your body produces too much androgen, a male hormone, and has problems using insulin, a hormone that regulates blood sugar.

This can lead to various health problems, such as irregular periods, infertility, acne, weight gain, diabetes, and heart disease.

One of the key factors in managing PCOS is diet.

What you consume can affect your blood sugar levels, which can impact your PCOS symptoms and overall health.

To effectively manage PCOS, you should consume fiber-rich foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes, and avoid refined carbs like white bread, pasta, rice, and sweets.

Now, carbs are the main source of energy for your body.

People usually eat carbs in the form of grains, starches, sugars, and fibers.

Carbs are not bad for PCOS, but some types of carbs are better than others.

Carbs that are high in fiber and low in glycemic index (GI) are good for PCOS, because they contain vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytochemicals that can help balance your hormones, lower your insulin resistance, and reduce inflammation.

Carbs that are low in fiber and high in GI are bad for PCOS, because they can spike your blood sugar levels, increase your insulin production, and worsen your PCOS symptoms.

One serving of carbs can give you about 15 grams of carbohydrates, 3 grams of fiber, and 4% of your daily needs of iron, magnesium, and zinc.

Fiber can positively affect PCOS, because it can slow down the digestion of carbs, prevent blood sugar spikes, and keep you full longer.

Iron, magnesium, and zinc can also positively affect PCOS, because they can support your metabolism, immune system, and reproductive health.

Furthermore, carbs are a macronutrient and macronutrients are important for PCOS.

Because, they provide the energy and building blocks for your body to function properly.

However, the quality and quantity of carbs matter, and you should aim for a balanced intake of carbs, protein, and fat.

You can eat about 45-60% of your daily calories from carbs safely.

More than that can cause weight gain, insulin resistance, and hormonal imbalance.

That’s why I suggest you limit your intake of refined carbs, added sugars, and processed foods, which can worsen your PCOS.

Stick to about 3-4 servings of whole, unprocessed carbs per day to minimize the risk of diabetes, heart disease, and infertility.

Also, you shouldn’t eat carbs if you have diabetes or prediabetes, to prevent high blood sugar levels and complications.

Because, your body may not be able to use insulin effectively to regulate your blood sugar levels.

You can buy fresh carbs in your local market or can order them from online.

Always choose carbs that are whole, unprocessed, and organic, if possible.

Because, they have more nutrients, fiber, and phytochemicals than refined, processed, and conventional carbs.

You can store them in a cool, dry, and dark place for up to a week, or in the refrigerator or freezer for longer.

Finally, remember, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, including a balanced diet, regular exercise, stress management, and essential medical care, is key to managing PCOS effectively.

I always recommend my PCOS patients to follow a PCOS-friendly diet to improve their overall well-being, and enjoy a longer and healthier life.

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About the Author

Abdur Rahman Choudhury

Abdur Rahman Choudhury is a nutritionist in West Bengal, India, with a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Biochemistry.

He has done his diploma in nutrition from Fabulous Body Inc (US), and completed various certification courses from several universities. He also has considerable research experience in PCOS.

Abdur currently lives in India and keeps fit by weight training and eating mainly home-cooked meals.

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