According to a study by the US National Library of Medicine, around 51% of women facing PCOS also experience PCOS- associated weight gain. This weight gain is also associated with additional long-term problems. These include high cholesterol, hypertension and elevated levels of insulin.
The main question on the minds of women facing PCOS-associated weight gain is “How to lose weight with PCOS?” More importantly that losing weight is how to lose weight with PCOS naturally. In this blog we will talk about the signs of PCOS-associated weight gain and how to lose weight with PCOS naturally. We will also discuss if you need to take PCOS weight loss supplements, and which one might be okay for you.
If you have PCOS, changing your diet and exercise routine and lifestyle will be the major drivers in how to lose weight with PCOS naturally, and then maintain that weight.
What is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome?
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a condition that affects around 6-12% of women of reproductive age worldwide. In India, every 1 in 5 women of reproductive age either have PCOS or Polycystic Ovary Disorder (PCOD). PCOS symptoms include hormonal imbalances, irregular period cycles (including months without getting your period), and the development of small cysts on the ovaries.
Women with PCOS often face additional problems, many of which also have negative impacts on their social and emotional states:
- Around 51% of women with PCOS experience body-shaming or fat-shaming. This leads them to search on how to lose weight with PCOS fast
- 49% of women with PCOS are ridiculed for hirsutism. It is a condition where they experience excessive facial hair growth.
- 30% of women with PCOS have difficulty in getting pregnant because PCOS and PCOD can affect your fertility levels
- 48% of women with PCOS suffer from stubborn acne or inflammation. This acne can be persistent and leave marking scars on your face even after it goes.
How to Lose Weight with PCOS Naturally
There are two types of PCOS-associated weight gain you might experience:
- Central Obesity – This leads to a fat accumulation in the abdomen
- Peripheral Obesity – This leads to fat accumulation in the hips, buttocks and thighs
If you have experienced PCOS-associated weight gain and are trying to lose weight, then you might face some problems. The hormonal balances, insulin resistance and inflammation related to PCOS and PCOD can make it a bit difficult to lose weight.
However, small gains make a difference here. Even a weight loss of 5% can improve your insulin resistance, balance your hormone levels, help regularise your menstrual cycles, make a difference to your fertility levels, and improve your lifestyle significantly.
Do not depend purely on marketed PCOS weight loss supplements. The main methods to lose weight will include calorie-burning exercises and a balanced, low-cholesterol diet.
Below, team OZiva gives four tips on how to lose weight with PCOS naturally.
4 Tips on How to Reduce Weight in PCOS
Reduce your intake of carbohydrates
Decreasing your carb consumption will make a difference in your PCOS management because carbohydrates can impact your insulin levels. Insulin is necessary for energy storage and blood sugar regulation in the body. Around 35-80% of women with PCOS also experience insulin resistance. This means that your cells do not respond to insulin properly and thus insulin is not under regulation.
Research has proven that high levels of insulin are associated with increased body fat and weight gain. Eating a low-carbohydrate diet and one that has a low glycemic index will help decrease insulin levels and increase insulin resistance, and as a result, will help with the associated weight gain.
The glycemic index is a measurement of how quickly a particular food can raise your blood sugar levels. Keep your diet low-glycemic to balance your insulin levels.
Here are some recommended foods to eat if you have PCOS – Whole grains such as lentils, legumes like beans, seeds, fruits and starchy vegetables.
Avoid the following foods – Anything high in fat or salt, greasy food options, foods high in Monosodium glutamate (MSG), and anything with high levels of natural or added sugar, or artificial sweeteners.
2. Exercise regularly (preferably every day)
Exercise is one of the best strategies to induce weight loss, particularly during PCOS or PCOD. You should exercise almost every day for around 30 minutes at the minimum. You can try out cardiovascular exercises like zumba or dancing, or even go for weight training or strength training. Strength training involves dumbbells, kettlebells, strong resistance bands to build lean muscle mass. It helps tone you and burn more calories during your resting phase.
This means that you can maintain a healthy weight and figure out how to lose weight with PCOS naturally. Women at a healthy weight during PCOS feel the effects of PCOS cures and treatments a lot more. Reducing weight, in many cases, can help reduce symptoms of PCOS as well. So try out some strength training PCOS exercises.
Regarding cardio exercises, do an intense cardio routine for around 1-2 minutes at a time. Include:
- Jumping jacks
- Bicep curls
- Treadmill walking
Walk the treadmill for 30-45 minutes either indoors or outdoors. These cardio exercises are how to lose weight with PCOS.
3. Get enough sleep and manage your stress levels
Sleep is essential for overall health. If you have PCOS, you may experience sleep disturbances, including sleeping excessively in the daytime, sleep apnea and insomnia.
Lack of sleep increases the activity of hormones that drive hunger, such as ghrelin and cortisol. This causes you to eat more throughout the day. Insufficient sleep is associated with being either overweight and obese. There are studies that have linked a better quality of sleep to fat loss. So ensure that you are getting around 7-8 hours of sleep at night to ensure that weight loss is proceeding at a good rate.
Stress is another risk factor for weight gain. Managing or reducing stress levels is how to lose weight with PCOS naturally. Stress increases levels of cortisol, a hormone that your adrenal glands produce. Chronically, there is a link between high cortisol levels and weight gain.
Chronic stress increases your chances of gaining belly fat.
Practice yoga and other mind-body coordination exercises to help reduce your stress and improve your sleep.
4. Try out OZiva HerBalance for PCOS
Aside from focusing on your diet, sleep and exercise, another very important solution for managing PCOS symptoms is trying OZiva HerBalance for PCOS. These PCOS supplements balance testosterone and estrogen levels in around 45-60 days, due to 9 standardised herbal extracts like Chasteberry, Rhodiola Rosea, Red Raspberry, and more.
PCOS cannot be cured, if you are wondering how to manage PCOS from home, these PCOS supplements can reduce PCOS symptoms, menstrual cramps, and hormonal imbalances if combined with a clean, holistic lifestyle, and exercise
This is a revitalising tonic for the female reproductive system that improves fertility with 500mg Vitamin B8 (Inositol) and 50 mcg Chromium per serving. Myo-inositol in these PCOS supplements helps control production of insulin in the body. Thus, it helps improve overall ovarian function, and reduces PCOS symptoms like period irregularity and hormonal imbalance.
Last modified: August 14, 2023