Pregnancy & PCOS: Diet / Fitness / Lifestyle Changes

Women who have pregnancy PCOS (also referred to as Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome Polycystic Ovarian Disease, or Polycystic Ovary Disease) may experience more health problems than most healthy pregnant women.

Pregnancy & PCOS Health Risks

Some of the health risks pregnant women who have PCOS are at risk of getting include:

  • gestational diabetes
  • pregnancy-induced high blood pressure
  • pre-eclampsia
  • macrosomia
  • endometriosis
  • miscarriage
  • premature delivery

Because these health risks can become serious problems (that can put both the mother’s and the baby’s life at risk), it is important for pregnant women who have PCOS to make the necessary changes to their diet, fitness, and lifestyle to reverse the effects of PCOS disease and its underlying cause of insulin resistance.

Women who have been diagnosed with having PCOS before pregnancy should be screened for gestational diabetes, abnormal glucose, pre-eclampsia, and high blood pressure. They should be referred to specialists if test results indicate abnormalities. Pregnant women who have PCOS also need to be closely monitored for potential miscarriages and premature deliveries.

Pregnancy & PCOS Lifestyle Improvements

If you are pregnant and have been diagnosed with PCOS, you will need to improve your overall diet, increase your amount of exercise, and reduce your stress levels to reduce health risks to you and your baby during pregnancy.

Your health care provider might prescribe required vitamins and mineral supplements, and an anti-diabetic drug called Metformin, as well as a healthy diet and exercise program for you to follow while you are pregnant.

Pregnancy & PCOS Diet Improvements

Because an underlying cause of PCOS is insulin resistance, your health care provider will recommend a diet that includes foods with low glycemic indexes that decrease the body’s insulin resistance. It will be important for you to avoid foods that have high glycemic indexes, such as refined sugar and processed carbohydrates.

Sweets, soft drinks, and processed carbohydrates found in white bread and white rice should all be avoided if you have PCOS. Food with high glycemic indexes are known to raise blood sugar levels and cause the body to secrete excess insulin, which can increase the health risks during pregnancy. You will need to replace foods that have high glycemic indexes with foods that have lower glycemic indexes such as whole grain breads, pastas, and rice.

It is also recommended that you eat small portions of low glycemic carbohydrates with proteins or healthy fats throughout the day instead of in large portions without proteins or fats. This will help manage your blood sugar levels and decrease your insulin levels.

Pregnancy & PCOS Exercise Recommendations

It is also recommended that pregnant women who have PCOS exercise regularly. Low impact exercises such as walking, swimming, and yoga will help to regulate your blood pressure and reduce your stress levels, resulting in reduced health risks from PCOS.

With healthy changes to your diet, exercise routine, and lifestyle, you will improve your chances of a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby.

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Posts By Sequoia
  • jessica raven

    Thank you very much for this information. Being the first in my family to be diagnosed with pcos over three years ago i did not think it was possible for me to have children, but obviously god thought otherwise. I have five months along and I am having red flags thrown up in front of me about everything. Being in a doctors office, they don’t have all the time in the world to explain everything to put everyone at ease and being the only one in my family there isn’t many places to go for answers. This site here can explain things better to help you understand what you need to do in order for red flags to not be thrown up so much and help you to stay more in control of your situation instead of feeling helpless and scared, so thank you.

  • Kendra

    Thanks for so much information. I was just diagnosed with PCOS yesterday and it was very depressing to know that PCOS was the reason for my miscarriage. I am glad that I am aware of the situation now.

  • Mitch Grey

    hi,

    I am diagnosed with PCOS over a year now an I am afraid I might not be able to have a child..Im only 25 and my husband love children.Please give me some tips to adress PCOS and get pregnant. currently Im taking Metformin as advised by my OB and still waiting for development.

    thank you,

  • Heather

    I was diagnosed with PCOS when i was 18 and was told i had a very slim chance of having children because of cysts in my ovaries. I am now 21 and found out about a week ago that i am pregnant. I am terrified that i am going to lose it and that this may be my only chance.

  • Anushri

    hi,
    I am diagnosed with PCOS over a year now an I am afraid I might not be able to have a child..Im only 25 and I love children.Please give me some tips to adress PCOS and get pregnant. currently Im taking Metformin as advised by my OB .

    THANK YOU