PCOS/Insulin Resistance Support - Need some advice~!




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CrimsonDiamond
01-21-2013, 11:32 PM
Well after falling drastically off the wagon, i'm back on it again. It's a new year, and I want to finally work at getting my health back. I'm feeling REALLY motivated. More motivated than I have been last year. I'm really feeling good about this year. Anyway, I am slightly confused as to where I should start. Last year I went to the nutritionist and she told me to only eat 200 carbs, 45-60 carbs per meals, 15-20 carbs per snacks. She said to only do 1600 calories. And to eat at least 5 servings of fruits and veggies, 4 servings of low-fat diary also. But then I got into the whole Atkins then this Insulin resistance Diet (side note: bought the book and now I am regretting it. I bought it on Google play. Don't think I can return it lol) I am not sure what to do. Should I listen to the nutritionist or should I just go with something else?

Thanks in advance for the advice!


Lindsayanne716
01-21-2013, 11:40 PM
In my experience and what I've read is that most fruits are far too high in sugar for those of us with pcos and insulin resistance. Stick to berries if you must eat fruit because they are lower in sugar and high in antioxidants. Dairy and wheat can also be an issue. My personal opinion is that a diet that is rich in protein, healthy fat and lots of fibre would be the best thing for you.

CrimsonDiamond
01-21-2013, 11:59 PM
In my experience and what I've read is that most fruits are far too high in sugar for those of us with pcos and insulin resistance. Stick to berries if you must eat fruit because they are lower in sugar and high in antioxidants. Dairy and wheat can also be an issue. My personal opinion is that a diet that is rich in protein, healthy fat and lots of fibre would be the best thing for you.

Even though it seems easy when I read it, it's so hard once I think about it. Can you expand on it a little bit more ^^? What do you mean by rich protein, healthy fats, and lots of fibre?


Lindsayanne716
01-22-2013, 12:06 AM
Try to get protein in with all your meals as it not only builds muscle to burn fat but also keeps you full longer. This can come in the form of lean meats, nuts, protein powders (try brown rice or hemp if you are dairy sensitive). Eat high quality carbs that are rich in fibre like a really good 16 grain bread, but in moderation. For instance, for lunch you could have a half turkey sandwich with some veggies and half a cup of cottage cheese. Healthy fats can come from nuts, but butters, etc. I like to cook with coconut oil which is amazing for you and has an insane amount of health benefits. I also sometimes add a tbsp to my chocolate flavored protein shakes and it's a real treat!

Lindsayanne716
01-22-2013, 12:07 AM
And by but butters, I meant nut butters. Sorry, my iPhone loves to autocorrect and make me sound illiterate

Lindsayanne716
01-22-2013, 12:09 AM
I've yet to cut out dairy because I love it so much. If you want, pm me and I can give you better ideas of the types of things I eat on an everyday basis.

CrimsonDiamond
01-22-2013, 12:19 AM
Try to get protein in with all your meals as it not only builds muscle to burn fat but also keeps you full longer. This can come in the form of lean meats, nuts, protein powders (try brown rice or hemp if you are dairy sensitive). Eat high quality carbs that are rich in fibre like a really good 16 grain bread, but in moderation. For instance, for lunch you could have a half turkey sandwich with some veggies and half a cup of cottage cheese. Healthy fats can come from nuts, but butters, etc. I like to cook with coconut oil which is amazing for you and has an insane amount of health benefits. I also sometimes add a tbsp to my chocolate flavored protein shakes and it's a real treat!

I see. I go to college, so I need to fit eating healthy around my class schedule. But yeah, I will definitely pm you. Like now :D Thanks again!

SMSDREAMER2007
01-22-2013, 02:46 AM
Well let's put it this way, I went to see a nutritionist and I gained 40 lbs from listening to her. 200 carbs is WAY too high with PCOS/insulin resistance. Almost all of us here have to have LOW to no wheat. I do have a pita, or a tortilla maybe even a piece of bread once in a while, usually only if I go to a restaurant for something or other though. Anyway, I gained the weight in a MONTH from listening to her. Not doing that again. For me, I'm not big on dairy so I don't eat it, Occasionally I will have soy milk but that is about it. I know for a lot of people with IR/PCOS the hormones in dairy can hurt them. I LOVE sandwiches, wraps, etc so I just use lettuse instead of a tortilla for my sandwiches, I take a whole leaf of lettuce and put my sandwich fixins in there. I don't eat fruit except maybe a piece of dried fruit or a fruit leather once in a while. If I need extra potassium because my sodium is high I will eat a banana, Not often though. These are just some things I do. In general our conditions and hormones are all so different that we need to find our own perfect combination but we usually all have some similarities.

Aianah
01-22-2013, 09:35 AM
I'm new and still have much to learn, but I have had the most success (when I actually stick with it) with the Hellers' Carbohydrate Addict's Lifespan Program. Cheesy name, but I can literally eat whatever I want, with a few simple rules, so I feel empowered, not imprisoned. Even a little bit of sweets- although I have transitioned from Dr. Pepper and a piece of cake to fruit or honey and peanut butter, most of the time, with one meal a day.

The basic premise is to keep carbs low for two meals a day and snacks, then one meal a day, have whatever you want- but keep it balanced (visually) and eat within one hour to control insulin response.

I've used this since before I knew I had IR- and when I've "fallen off the wagon" has been high stress times or times when I've been ill, typically. It's livable because I don't tell myself I can never have sweets, I tell myself 'later'.

I keep organic peanut butter (no sugar in it), celery sticks, mozzarella cheese sticks and raw almonds around for snacks. I am a grab n go kind of eater, so this works for me as long as I keep what I need in hand.

It worked for me to break a long standing 6 pack of Dr. Pepper a day habit, years ago. Cravings were intense for a few days, then I realized I didn't WANT so much sugar, by the end of a week.
Over the years, I have gradually refined what I consider a treat, foregoing M&Ms for homemade cookies, and now foregoing homemade cookies for fruit or maybe a tortilla with dinner.
Granted, I have had long periods that I did not follow this eating plan, but since I was diagnosed IR, I've only dropped it once, and that was at Christmas time.

CrimsonDiamond
01-22-2013, 09:43 AM
Well let's put it this way, I went to see a nutritionist and I gained 40 lbs from listening to her. 200 carbs is WAY too high with PCOS/insulin resistance. Almost all of us here have to have LOW to no wheat. I do have a pita, or a tortilla maybe even a piece of bread once in a while, usually only if I go to a restaurant for something or other though. Anyway, I gained the weight in a MONTH from listening to her. Not doing that again. For me, I'm not big on dairy so I don't eat it, Occasionally I will have soy milk but that is about it. I know for a lot of people with IR/PCOS the hormones in dairy can hurt them. I LOVE sandwiches, wraps, etc so I just use lettuse instead of a tortilla for my sandwiches, I take a whole leaf of lettuce and put my sandwich fixins in there. I don't eat fruit except maybe a piece of dried fruit or a fruit leather once in a while. If I need extra potassium because my sodium is high I will eat a banana, Not often though. These are just some things I do. In general our conditions and hormones are all so different that we need to find our own perfect combination but we usually all have some similarities.

Oh my gosh, really? I definitely can't afford to gain a lot of weight. I'm already big as it is :) So what kind of eating habit do you do? I love diary in the sense of yogurt and occasional milk. I don't eat eat much bread though; I use lettuce as my bread.

CrimsonDiamond
01-22-2013, 09:48 AM
I'm new and still have much to learn, but I have had the most success (when I actually stick with it) with the Hellers' Carbohydrate Addict's Lifespan Program. Cheesy name, but I can literally eat whatever I want, with a few simple rules, so I feel empowered, not imprisoned. Even a little bit of sweets- although I have transitioned from Dr. Pepper and a piece of cake to fruit or honey and peanut butter, most of the time, with one meal a day.

The basic premise is to keep carbs low for two meals a day and snacks, then one meal a day, have whatever you want- but keep it balanced (visually) and eat within one hour to control insulin response.

I've used this since before I knew I had IR- and when I've "fallen off the wagon" has been high stress times or times when I've been ill, typically. It's livable because I don't tell myself I can never have sweets, I tell myself 'later'.

I keep organic peanut butter (no sugar in it), celery sticks, mozzarella cheese sticks and raw almonds around for snacks. I am a grab n go kind of eater, so this works for me as long as I keep what I need in hand.

It worked for me to break a long standing 6 pack of Dr. Pepper a day habit, years ago. Cravings were intense for a few days, then I realized I didn't WANT so much sugar, by the end of a week.
Over the years, I have gradually refined what I consider a treat, foregoing M&Ms for homemade cookies, and now foregoing homemade cookies for fruit or maybe a tortilla with dinner.
Granted, I have had long periods that I did not follow this eating plan, but since I was diagnosed IR, I've only dropped it once, and that was at Christmas time.

I see. Well that does sound awesome. If I can eat whatever I want and still lose weight, that would be perfect. Is this a book?

Rana
01-22-2013, 11:23 AM
My personal advice is this:

You're your own unique experiment.

I have also found that nutritionists usually don't know how to handle PCOS/IR women and with two nutritionists that I went (two different times in my life) I GAINED weight, rather than lost it and it drove me nuts they thought I wasn't following the plan and that they knew more about my body than I did.

(Although, I'll give credit to the second one who eventually said that if my own way of eating was helping me lose weight, not to follow her plan and we parted ways!)

Anyway, 200 g of carbohydrates even for me is too high. I gain or maintain weight at that much.

I find that if I keep at 150 or less, I can lose weight if I watch my calories and quality of carbs (i.e. carbs from fruits and vegetables, not cakes or sweets).




Just a side not about "low carb diets" and ALL you can eat:

A lot of diets that eliminate wheat/white carbs like pasta/rice/bread/etc. imply or even say directly that you shouldn't count calories or macronutrients.

The assumption as to why you don't need to count calories is because if you're eating foods like lean meats and high fiber vegetables (leafy greens, for example) that you will be satiated with those foods and you won't need to eat anything else.

That assumes that you are AWARE of your hunger signals and they are working PERFECTLY.

Some people they do and on these diets, they consume lower calorie amounts because they are satiated with their bacon and cheese and apple.

Other people -- like ME -- will overeat their bacon and collard greens because I like the taste of food and I like eating it. I've struggled to find an emotional reason, but I haven't (yet) so I can't fix why I continue to eat even after I am full. (I also get stressed out and chewing helps loosen up my jaw and food rather than gum is in my mouth so I eat... long story.)

Anyway.

If you can do THAT, then yes, these low-carb diets (Atkins, South Beach, Paleo/Primal, Carb Addicts, etc.) will allow you to lose weight. But if you overeat because your hunger signals are off, you will still maintain or gain weight.



Advice for IR/PCOS:

I have IR too and the key to making weight loss work with IR is to balance your insulin response in your body. The bigger you body is, the harder the pancreas has to work and invariably it won't get it right. This causes IR in some people, which is when the pancreas is not secreting the right amount of insulin for the amount of glucose that's coursing through your body.

The way to control it -- aside from losing weight, which is always the first thing doctor's say -- is to not eat foods that will put a lot of glucose in your blood stream. In order words, nothing that will elevate it -- which means no crappy carbs as I call them like rice, potatoes, bread, cookies, sugar, candy, cakes, bars, etc.

Depending on whether you are sensitive to it or not, you may find that even fruit elevates your insulin response too high. A way to test it is to get the glucometer and strips and eat and test yourself after everything that you're eating to get an accurate reading of your body's response to food.

Rather than pricking yourself 12 times a day (you need to test one hour after, 2 hours after) you can just start with the basics and then as time goes on, if you need to refine it, you can do it then or start eliminating other foods.

Secondly, since diet is so hard sometimes and we can trip over a piece of cake and have it land in our mouths, the other side of this equation is exercise. Cardio will burn off the excess glucose stored in your muscles and when that's gone (20 mins into the exercise) it will start to pull glucose out of your organs (yay!) and finally your fat (long-term cardio).

Weight lifting will actually increase your body's response to insulin because it will create muscle and the glucose will be stored in that muscle. And since muscle burns this glucose easily, it will get out of your system quickly. And then more glucose can be stored there.

This is why exercise and diet matter so much for PCOS/IR women.

Aianah
01-22-2013, 12:24 PM
I see. Well that does sound awesome. If I can eat whatever I want and still lose weight, that would be perfect. Is this a book?

Yes, it is a book, it's Rachel and Richard Heller, and you can get a used copy on Amazon for under $5.
However, I'll reiterate, there are rules you must follow, in order to eat what you want.
It's just not as restrictive as many are- we need a balance, and the biggest issue I see everywhere is our diets, even when we think we're eating well, are not balanced. Sugars and corn syrups and starches are major players everywhere you turn.

I also weigh every day and average at the end of the week.

avalonmoon
01-22-2013, 09:15 PM
I think everyone answered great...for me I'm at or below 150 carbs all day ( that is after removing the counter fiber). I allow about 1-3 days per week of limited bread but only sour dough- it's lower glycymic so it doesn't flood the pancreas. As far as dairy, I quit all milk/yogurt and seldomly allow cheese or sour cream. I have noticed better battle w/ the bulge since doing that. I do get skinny cofees at times ( which has low/non fat milk).. i regret them usually so they are becoming less frequent. Rice needs a good portion control. wheat and brown grains can be as bad to insulin resistant individuals. For me, by making these changes the weight is coming off, before doing these things it barely budged. Again everyone had excellant advice in this thread but each of us ladies might have different issues w/ different foods, much like allergies.

shcirerf
01-23-2013, 12:46 AM
I rarely wander into this thread, but, I think Rana has it right.

You have to figure out what works for you.

This may take some time and trial and error, and extensive tracking of food, daily weighing, and moods, and so on.

However, the tracking is important, as it gives you feedback. :hug:

astrophe
01-23-2013, 01:22 AM
If you are at starting square, it doesn't even matter.

ANYTHING will help if your "Square 1" place is a place of unhealthy eating habits.

A simple calorie reduction like 1600 means less junky habits, even if you KEEP the junky habits. You know what I mean?

Do what you can do as this first baby step. Take notes in a food log.

When you are ready for the next baby step, you could see about adjusting to the dietitian guideline. Like 200 carb max. That would be an improvement if your "square 1" place was 300 carb, right? If your "natural" turns out to be like 180, don't increase it. But spend the time getting to know where you are even coming from as your "Square 1" place. Otherwise you are making changes without understanding what eating habits got you to the overweight place to begin with. You want to be moving AWAY from that place. Right?

If you want to make "more produce" a goal, go there FIRST before choosing starches. Get the carbs from produce THEN on to the starchy veggies and grains. Keep in your carb "budget" -- whatever you determine your personal feel good place is.

When you master one thing, then move on to the next tweak you want to make. You don't have to take it all on board at once. Pace yourself, so that you can succeed long haul.

In my own life, I know 500 calories spread 4 hours apart keeps my blood sugar going fine. A 40-30-30 split across carbs, protein, and fats works for me for blood sugar and my A1C labs tend to come back happy.

BUT... 2000 calories is too much. I need to reduce the calories and up the exercise. So I struggle there. Now that blood sugar control isn't the main thing and weight loss is more on my front burner, I have to make my tweaks to meet my current goal.

There's always tweaking to meet goal. You can do it and meet YOUR goals! :carrot:

Hang in there!

HTH!
A.

Aianah
01-23-2013, 07:18 PM
If you are at starting square, it doesn't even matter.

ANYTHING will help if your "Square 1" place is a place of unhealthy eating habits.

A simple calorie reduction like 1600 means less junky habits, even if you KEEP the junky habits. You know what I mean?

HTH!
A.

SO true!