Managing Insulin Resistance & PCOS Through Lifestyle Changes & Diet

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Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disease that affects a large number of women of reproductive age. This condition has led to various health complications, and one of the causes is insulin resistance. Find out more about insulin resistance PCOS.

RELATED: Senolytic Drugs As The Future Of Regenerative Medicine


In This Article:

  1. What Is PCOS?
  2. What Is Insulin Resistance?
  3. The Relationship Between Insulin Resistance and PCOS
  4. Treatment for Insulin Resistance PCOS
  5. Nutritional Supplement for Insulin Resistance PCOS


What to Know About Insulin Resistance

What Is PCOS?

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disease that affects a large number of women of reproductive age. Women with PCOS may have irregular or extended menstrual cycles, as well as high amounts of male hormone (androgen). The ovaries may produce a large number of tiny collections of fluid (follicles) and fail to release eggs on a regular basis.

It is more common than you would think, affecting 6% to 12% of adult women, according to research.

PCOS symptoms usually appear around the time of the first menstrual cycle during puberty. PCOS can occur later in life, for example, as a result of significant weight gain.

The signs and symptoms of PCOS differ. When you have at least two of the following symptoms, you have PCOS.

  • Polycystic ovaries. Your ovaries may be enlarged, with follicles around the eggs. As a result, the ovaries may cease to function regularly.
  • Excess androgen. Elevated amounts of male hormones can cause physical symptoms such as abundant face and body hair (hirsutism), severe acne, and male-pattern baldness.
  • Irregular periods. The most prevalent symptom of PCOS is infrequent, irregular, or extended menstrual periods. For instance, you might have less than nine periods per year, more than 35 days between periods, or excessively heavy periods.


What Is Insulin Resistance?

Under normal circumstances, the hormone insulin temporarily rises after eating. It encourages the liver and muscles to absorb blood sugar and convert it to energy. This produces a drop in blood sugar and, as a result, a drop in insulin. A fasting blood test reveals that both sugar and insulin levels are normal in those with normal insulin sensitivity.

Blood sugar levels may be normal in those with insulin resistance. Still, insulin levels are elevated because the pancreas has to produce more and more insulin to get its message through. Excess insulin induces inflammation and weight gain. It can also lead to Type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Excess insulin is another underlying physiological cause of PCOS.


The Relationship Between Insulin Resistance and PCOS

Insulin resistance is a common characteristic of both obese and lean PCOS patients. It affects 70-95 percent of obese PCOS patients and 30-75 percent of lean PCOS patients.

High insulin levels are not just a symptom of PCOS; they are also a key cause of the disorder. High insulin levels can impede ovulation and lead the ovaries to produce too much testosterone.

Over the previous 10 years, a rising prevalence of PCOS has been linked to a rise in obesity and weight gain, according to one study. Another study found a “galloping rise [of PCOS] in tandem with the growing prevalence of type 2 diabetes.”


Treatment for Insulin Resistance PCOS

To treat insulin resistance PCOS, you can follow the diet for insulin resistance plan including these factors:

Women with PCOS benefit from a little lower carbohydrate intake—not low, but lower—due to the insulin resistance problem. It’s essential to pair carbs with proteins and heart-healthy fats.

When it comes to carbohydrates, making good selections will help to reduce the glycemic load. The key to excellent carbohydrates is to choose whole grains; it’s critical to increase dietary fiber to achieve optimal glucose control.

An example of a balanced PCOS diet meal includes no more than a quarter of whole grains like brown rice, quinoa, multigrain bread, or whole-grain pasta. Essentially, the meal is composed of vegetables, fruit, lean protein, and a tiny amount of heart-healthy fats such as olive or nut oils.


Nutritional Supplement for Insulin Resistance PCOS

Inositol is an intracellular messenger involved in insulin signaling and may be used as a dietary supplement (Myo-inositol and di-chiro inositol). According to a 2018 study, inositol substantially improves insulin resistance indicators. It can control menstrual cycles, enhance ovulation, and cause metabolic improvements in polycystic ovary syndrome.

A magnesium supplement is also a good choice for treating insulin resistance PCOS. According to a recent meta-analysis, magnesium supplementation is helpful for treating insulin resistance in patients who are magnesium deficient. Other research discovered that combining magnesium, zinc, calcium, and vitamin D supplementation enhanced insulin metabolism in PCOS patients.

PCOS is treatable and effectively managed by having a good balanced polycystic ovary syndrome diet. And it’s best that you treat it at the first stage. If you have irregular periods and believe anything is wrong, it’s time to consult a gynecologist.


If you have questions about Insulin Resistance PCOS or any of the conditions discussed here, connect with us and learn more. Get information and support from our Blogs and shop our Supplements and Cosmeceuticals for Integrative Medicine.

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