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Empowering Wellness: Managing Insulin Resistance in PCOS

Insulin resistance occurs when the body's cells do not respond effectively to insulin, leading to an increased risk of diabetes and other health concerns. Insulin resistance is thought to effect up to 70% of those with PCOS. Managing insulin resistance in PCOS is critical for overall well-being. In this blog post, I’m going to explore strategies and lifestyle changes to help you improve insulin sensitivity, enabling you to manage your PCOS symptoms effectively.


Bowls of pasta

Understanding Insulin Resistance in PCOS


Before delving into management strategies, it's important to understand the connection between insulin resistance and PCOS. High levels of insulin can trigger the ovaries to produce more androgens (male hormones), leading to irregular menstrual cycles, acne, hirsutism (excessive hair growth), and other PCOS symptoms.


For more information on the signs and symptoms of insulin resistance, take a look at this blog post.


Practical Strategies for Managing Insulin Resistance in PCOS:


Choose low GI carbohydrates:


Choose complex carbohydrates with a low glycemic index to help stabilize blood sugar levels. Carbohydrates with a lower glycemic index do not rapidly increase blood glucose levels and provide a slower, steadier release of energy.


Examples of low GI carbohydrates include:

Brown and basmati rice

Porridge oats (not the instant varieties)

Bulgar wheat, wholegrain pasta

Bran flakes and other wholegrain breakfast cereals

Wholegrain breads

Quinoa


Pair your Low GI carbs with protein:


Protein helps slow down the response to glucose after a meal, therefore ensuring your meals contain adequate amounts of protein can make a big difference. The meal where most individuals fall short in protein consumption is breakfast. Take a look at the protein content of your regular breakfast to determine whether you need to add a little more.


Regular Exercise:


Regular physical activity improves insulin sensitivity through improving how efficiently the body is able to utilise glucose. Aim for a combination of aerobic exercise and strength training. Find activities you enjoy making exercise a sustainable part of your routine. And remember that even 10 minutes can have a positive impact.


Supplements:


Inositol has been proven through multiple clinical studies to improve how the body responds to insulin. Not only this, but it has also been proven to regulate the menstrual cycle, improve egg quality and lower testosterone levels.


For more information on the benefits and correct dosage of inositol read this blog post.


Lower your stress levels:


Chronic stress can worsen insulin resistance. Practice stress-reduction techniques like meditation, yoga, or deep breathing exercises.


Managing insulin resistance in PCOS is an ongoing journey that requires dedication and a holistic approach to health. By adopting a balanced diet, regular exercise, and other lifestyle changes, you can take control of your well-being and reduce the risk of complications associated with insulin resistance.


It’s not about completely changing your diet and lifestyle, rather making small changes and adding to these as you gain confidence, all those small changes add up to make a big difference.

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