Is Milk Bad for PCOS? (Expert Answer)

Short Answer: Milk is controversial for PCOS. Because it has calcium, vitamin D, and protein, which are good for PCOS, and lactose and hormones, which are bad for PCOS.

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a condition that affects your ovaries and hormones.

In PCOS, your body produces too much androgen, a male hormone, and does not ovulate regularly.

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

One of the key factors in managing PCOS is diet.

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

To effectively manage PCOS, you should consume low-glycemic index (GI) foods like whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and legumes, and avoid high-GI foods like white bread, rice, pasta, and sweets.

Now, milk is a white liquid food produced by the mammary glands of mammals.

People usually drink milk as a beverage or use it to make dairy products like cheese, yogurt, and butter.

Milk is controversial for PCOS because it contains both good and bad ingredients.

Milk has calcium, vitamin D, and protein, which are beneficial for bone health, immune function, and muscle growth.

However, milk also has lactose, a type of sugar, and hormones, such as insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), which may worsen PCOS symptoms.

One cup of whole milk can give you 149 calories, 8 grams of fat, 5 grams of saturated fat, 24 milligrams of cholesterol, 8 grams of protein, 30% of your daily calcium needs, 11% of your daily vitamin D needs, and 12 grams of carbohydrates, of which 11 grams are sugar.

Calcium can help regulate your menstrual cycle and reduce the risk of osteoporosis, which is higher in women with PCOS.

Vitamin D can improve your insulin sensitivity and fertility, and reduce inflammation and depression, which are common in PCOS.

Protein can help you feel full and maintain your muscle mass, which can boost your metabolism and weight loss.

Lactose can raise your blood sugar and insulin levels, which can worsen your hormonal imbalance and increase your risk of diabetes.

Hormones in milk can stimulate your ovaries to produce more androgen, which can cause acne, hirsutism, and ovulation problems.

Some studies have also linked dairy consumption to increased risk of endometrial cancer, which is more common in women with PCOS.

Furthermore, milk is a dairy product and dairy products are controversial for PCOS.

Some studies have shown that dairy products can improve PCOS symptoms, while others have shown that they can worsen them.

The effects of dairy products may depend on the type, amount, and quality of dairy, as well as the individual characteristics of the person consuming them.

If you have PCOS and want to consume milk, you should choose organic, low-fat, or skim milk, and limit your intake to one or two servings per day.

More than that can cause digestive issues, acne, inflammation, and hormonal imbalance.

Also, you shouldn’t drink milk if you have lactose intolerance, a condition in which you cannot digest lactose, to prevent bloating, gas, diarrhea, and abdominal pain.

Because lactose intolerance can reduce your absorption of calcium and vitamin D, you may need to supplement these nutrients or get them from other sources.

You can buy fresh milk in your local market or can order it from online.

Always choose milk that is pasteurized, homogenized, and fortified with vitamin D.

Because pasteurization kills harmful bacteria, homogenization prevents the separation of cream, and fortification adds vitamin D, which is often lacking in PCOS.

You can store milk in the refrigerator for up to seven days after opening, or in the freezer for up to three months.

Make sure to keep milk away from strong-smelling foods, as milk can absorb odors easily.

Do not drink milk that has a sour smell, taste, or appearance, as it may be spoiled.

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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