Obesity is a complex issue that is more than just weight. Obesity is associated with problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease and osteoarthritis. It is estimated that more than 1 in 3 people in America are currently either overweight or obese. Low carb diets and keto diets have helped people lose weight and improve their health, but some of these people may not be fully aware of the benefits that they can expect if they go low carb or keto.
With women’s health in the spotlight, the ketogenic diet is finally getting some attention. Proponents of this nutrient-dense diet say it can help with PCOS and other hormone-related issues. But what is the ketosis diet, and how does it differ from the keto diet?
Causes and treatment
PCOS is much more common in women who are overweight, type 2 diabetes, previous gestational diabetes and other conditions associated with insulin resistance. These include high blood pressure and cholesterol abnormalities.
It is known that lifestyle changes leading to weight loss can improve the symptoms of PCOS, as can the medication for type 2 diabetes metformin.
Given its strong link to obesity, high insulin levels and other metabolic problems, a low-carb diet may be ideal for reversing PCOS.
The low-carb diet is one of the most effective treatments for consistent and reliable weight loss, lowering insulin levels and reversing insulin resistance. Therefore, a low-carbohydrate diet should be considered as an option in any PCOS treatment plan.
Although there are not many published studies on low-carb diets and PCOS, most of the available scientific data is promising:
- In 2005, researchers followed 11 women with PCOS who followed a keto diet for six months. The five women who participated in the study lost weight and improved their hormonal status and hair count. Moreover, two of the women became pregnant during the study despite previous infertility problems.
- A 2013 study found that even a very modest reduction in carbs (41% of calories) can lead to significant improvements in weight, hormones and risk factors in women with PCOS.
- A 2017 review of clinical studies found that low-carb diets tend to lower circulating insulin levels, improve hormonal imbalances, and stimulate ovulation to improve pregnancy chances. A 2019 meta-analysis of randomized trials showed similar results and concluded: Adequate control of carbohydrate intake has beneficial effects on various aspects of PCOS and may be one of the important interventions to improve clinical symptoms in patients.
- Finally, in a 2020 study, 14 women with PCOS followed a ketogenic Mediterranean diet for 12 weeks. At the end of the study, they had lower blood sugar and insulin levels, better levels and functioning of reproductive hormones, fewer risk factors for heart disease, and an average weight loss of 9.4 kg.
In addition to the scientific evidence discussed above, the benefits of a low-carb diet for women with PCOS are supported by the clinical experience of physicians who have used this diet on their patients.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can low-carb help with PCOS?
Some people with PCOS have found that low-carb diets can help them to lose weight and regulate their periods. What are the risks of low-carb diets? Low-carb diets can be high in saturated fat and cholesterol, which can increase your risk of heart disease.
Is keto diet best for PCOS?
The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet that has been used for centuries to treat epilepsy and other neurological disorders. It is also being studied as a potential treatment for cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and type 2 diabetes. The ketogenic diet can be an effective weight loss tool for people with PCOS because it helps to reduce insulin levels in the body. This can help to balance hormones and improve fertility in women with PCOS. The ketogenic diet is not recommended for people with type 1 diabetes, as it can cause a dangerous drop in blood sugar levels. The ketogenic diet is not recommended for people with type 2 diabetes, as it can cause a dangerous drop in blood sugar levels.
Why Keto is bad for PCOS?
Keto is bad for PCOS because it can cause a decrease in insulin sensitivity, which can lead to weight gain and infertility. What are the benefits of Keto? Keto is good for PCOS because it can help with weight loss, improve insulin sensitivity, and reduce inflammation.
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