How to Lose Weight with PCOS: Creating A Perfect 101 Plan

Had a hard time losing weight? This post discusses all you need to know about how to lose weight with PCOS!

The most common type of endocrine disorder1, PCOS, has the most profound impact on a woman’s life. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, almost 6-10% of women worldwide are affected by PCOS and often hear people commenting- “Take care of your hair” or “Shred some belly fat” which can lead to stress, depression, and anxiety.

Hormonal imbalance! And the next morning, you get up with the frightening nightmare of the thinning scalp, tummy rolls, and unwanted mustache! Who would want even to consider these nightmares turning into reality? For PCOS women, the challenges are real, and one of them is how to lose weight with PCOS. This post serves as an ultimate guide on how to lose weight with PCOS.2

Engaged in a hot sexual act with someone special a few weeks before, and now missed periods for 15 days can freak one out to another extent. Obese women suffering from PCOS, which is a complex metabolic syndrome3, experience increased levels of male hormones, breakout, acne, irregular periods, thinning hair, and worse of all: Excess stomach fat and weight gain. Therefore, the question of how to lose weight with PCOS remains the most asked one.

PCOS and Weight Gain Goes Hand in Hand? Here’s the Truth

If you have PCOS, chances are you are experiencing one of the symptoms. Fertility issues, high levels of male hormones,4 insulin resistance, and being overweight are just a few, to begin with.

Let’s dive into some science! Are you wondering why PCOS is responsible for weight gain?  The answer is simple- Insulin and Glucose Issues! PCOS induces a condition called insulin resistance. In other words, it does not let the body use the hormone insulin, which is responsible for converting sugar and starches from the food we consume into energy to carry out daily activities.

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Source: Depositphotos

For the same, insulin, sugar, and glucose build up in the bloodstream. Result? Production of Androgens. Increased levels of male hormones in a woman’s body can lead to an array of symptoms: body acne, breakouts, and weight gain. For the same reason, abdominal fat is the main concern of women struggling with PCOS5.

The main hot topic is how to lose weight with PCOS, and it is obvious that reducing abdominal weight with PCOS is not easy! Not only weight gain, but PCOS is also often associated with a higher risk of heart and liver diseases6. Accumulation of excess body fat in the stomach, and the abdominal area, can increase the risk of heart disease and other diseases in the ovary.

Increased abdominal fat triggers insulin resistance, resulting in more fat accumulation. This can again take a form of a vicious cycle. No matter what you do, losing weight with PCOS can throw you off the racks and play with your patience to the max.

However, with a robust diet plan tailored to your requirements, a workout guide that works for you, and some minor lifestyle changes, shedding some extra pounds can be possible.

How to Lose Weight with PCOS? – Best Options Curated For You

It is backed by researchers worldwide that losing even 5% of excess body fat can contribute a lot to your PCOS symptoms. It can boost the immune system7, promote good gut health, and contribute wholly to the improved quality of a woman’s life. Some of the tops dos and don’ts to reduce inflammation and shed some extra pounds are listed below-

Low Carb Diet if You Want to Carve Curves

Since class 8th, the most common logic taught was- that carbohydrates are like an energy powerhouse of our body as after breaking down glucose, molecules of energy are produced. It is recommended to consume 50% carbohydrates of your total calorie intake.

Obese women with PCOS already have an excess buildup of glucose in their bloodstream. Thus, higher levels of insulin resistance8 are the main reason why medical professionals recommend less consumption of carbohydrates.

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Source: Depositphotos

A low Glycemic diet is imperative for weight loss during PCOS as they release sugar into your bloodstream slowly and help you attain your desired body weight. One can resort to low GI foods and improve insulin sensitivity—for instance, oats, sweet potato, quinoa, or millet.

If you have a hard time losing weight, forget about the consumption of added sugars and unhealthy foods. Cut back on eating carbs and focus more on a balanced diet.

Overweight women with PCOS should limit carbohydrate intake to 35-40%. Another approach one can follow is to count the calories consumed daily and eat 400 fewer carbohydrates than your usual diet. Consuming a lower-carb diet with high protein and fiber nutritional value will help one improve insulin resistance. Result? Weight Loss

More Protein in Your Diet is A Must

Incorporating a good and generous amount of protein in your daily diet is crucial for women with PCOS. To effectively synthesize insulin and hormones like estrogen and testosterone, the consumption of protein is essential. Also, a higher protein diet is directly linked with weight loss for females with PCOS.

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Source: Depositphotos

Some of the benefits of consuming protein 9in your diet if you struggle with PCOS are-

  • Boosts metabolism that helps burn more body fat.
  • Produces productions of hormones related to satiety and stimulates peptides, cholecystokinin. Thus, compressing cravings and controlling appetite.
  • Foods rich in protein are digested slowly and that’s why it does not impact blood sugar levels significantly. This prevents the risk of type-II diabetes and controls blood sugar levels.
  • It is also responsible for releasing a hormone called glucagon, which tempers the insulin response and counteracts the effects of increased insulin resistance.

Reputable studies conducted worldwide show that incorporating 30% protein in your daily diet can help you shed weight, lower testosterone levels, and boost insulin sensitivity.

Higher Fiber Intake At least Once a Day

A high-fiber diet can help you kickstart a splendid weight loss journey. Managing snack cravings can help one lose weight drastically. High fiber intake is also correlated with lower insulin resistance, lower belly fat, reduced bloating, and better gut health.

How to lose weight with PCOS? Consider fiber and fermented foods as your best weight-loss friends!

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Source: Depositphotos

One can either obtain fiber from complex carbohydrates or take fiber supplements. Some of the options you can consider incorporating into your diet are-

  • Barley
  • Whole-wheat pasta
  • Whole grains
  • Fatty Fish
  • Olive oil
  • Cereals
  • Whole-wheat Bread
  • Brown rice
  • Beans
  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Peas
  • Lentils

Besides consuming foods rich in fiber, drinking 8-9 glasses of water per day is imperative for the smooth flow of fiber in your digestive system, fat burning, and enhanced gut health.

One can consult a dietician or a doctor, ask for fiber supplements like methylcellulose or psyllium, and know more about how to lose weight with PCOS.

Plenty of Healthy Fats in Your Diet

The golden rule of losing weight for females with PCOS is to Cop out on unhealthy fats. Resort to healthy fats that do not elevate estrogen levels and facilitate weight loss. When you are struggling with Polycystic ovary syndrome, you are never satiated and often end up overeating. Girl, start looking for avocados, coconut oil, and nuts.

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Source: Depositphotos

A low-fat diet also works for women with PCOS who struggle with healthy eating habits and maintaining desired body weight, chronic stress, and excess insulin levels. On the other hand, foods rich in healthy fats help one feel full and content quickly. It also prevents overeating and fat storage, making it a win-win situation. Result? Fewer calorie intake, promoting weight loss!

Losing Weight with the Help of Fermented Foods

Thanks to the recent advancement in the field of diet and the nutritional value of foods we consume daily, people are now well acquainted with the fact that fermented foods boost metabolism, control weight, and promote a healthy gut. Ask any dietician- how to lose weight with PCOS, and the simple answer is a healthy diet of fermented foods.

Every tradition and every culture worldwide incorporates the consumption of fermented foods. The active bacteria create nutrients and unlock a package of healthy microflorae that significantly support the gut health and immune system.

Some fermented food recipes one can include in your daily diet are-

  1. Kimchi -If you adore Korean dramas, you are well acquainted with this delicious, spicy pickled sauerkraut, rich in vitamins and minerals. Craving for something delicious for dinner? Get fermented kimchi and enjoy the benefits of this probiotic food loaded with vitamins and minerals.
  2. Greek Yogurt -Cook yourself a gracious meal of strawberry smoothie in Greek yogurt. Although it is advised to limit dairy intake in Polycystic ovary syndrome, coconut milk, coconut kefir, and Greek yogurt can be incorporated from time to time into your meal plans. It is known for facilitating efficient digestion and improvised gut health. Thus, promoting weight loss.
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No Binge Eating, Lower Insulin Resistance by Mindful Eating Practices, Here’s How

Eating disorders for women with Polycystic ovary syndrome are very common. Consuming added sugars, junk foods, drinking soda, and eating cupcakes before bed are some of the binge eating habits women struggle with and still wondering how to lose weight with PCOS.

To lose weight, it is crucial to understand the downfall of binge eating and its impact on your overall health. From being fat to fit, it’s a journey that involves dedication, persistent efforts, and consistency. Hence, dieticians and professionals often advise it to refer to mindful eating practices.

6 Tips for Mindful Eating

Setting exact times for breakfast, mid-day meals, lunch, and dinner are crucial. With an appropriate diet plan, one is more likely to combat the emotional eating disorder.

Here’s how you can practice mindful eating-

  • Eating slowly, and chewing food properly without any external distractions like Tv and smartphones.
  • Practice silent eating
  • Stop eating food when you are full.
  • Ask yourself why you overeat- Just because it tastes like heaven or you are bored?
  • Pick one day per meal and focus on food only
  • Notice how food affects your mood
  • Set cheat days and award yourself but do not over exceed the set boundaries

These mindful eating practices will help you combat the problem of weight gain during Polycystic ovary syndrome by reducing stress and effectively changing your eating behaviors. Harness the power of mindful eating to have complete control over what you eat, how much you eat, and how it will help you shed some extra pounds.

Best eating practices and self-analysis of calorie intake versus calories burnt will help you answer the question of how to lose weight with PCOS and see results quickly.

Keep that Bud down, Quit Smoking

Do you seek an answer to the question of how to lose weight with PCOS? Recent advancements in science and research clearly indicate that smoking is the worst lifestyle choice you will ever make if you suffer from Polycystic ovary syndrome10.

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Source: Depositphotos

If you are on medication for PCOS, chances are you are consuming birth control pills. It is backed by science that smoking can exacerbate the medical condition by putting you at risk of heart disease and often creating blood clots, negatively impacting your overall health. Build a healthier lifestyle and quit smoking before dreaming of losing weight.

Workout: Move Your Body and Resort to Exercises

Life of a gen-z summed up? Slouched back, popcorns in one hand and pizza in the other, with Tv remotes and smartphones laying around.

Gone are the days when people didn’t acknowledge the importance of exercising daily. By dint of the pandemic, now everyone is well acquainted with the fact that exercise and workouts are an integral part of one’s life now.

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Source: Depositphotos

Exercising helps boost metabolism, burn extra fat, and lose weight quickly. Focusing on HIIT training routines (high-intensity training regimes) for women with PCOS is imperative. Also, rigorous, long cardio sessions combined with 15-20mins resistance training can help one reduce weight, improve cholesterol levels and improve insulin sensitivity.

Don’t Ignore Your Sleep Schedule: Best Bedtime Habits Check?

Nothing feels better than a long tiring day at work and then changing into your pajamas for a good sleep session. However, with the gen-z lifestyle, there’s no doubt that the sleep schedule has deteriorated.

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Today, women in the corporate sector are swamped with assignments and overburdened with work. In such scenarios, taking time out for the family while engaging in social activities leaves no options rather than compromising sleep. Result? Messed sleep schedule indicates messed hormones, i.e., hormones responsible for appetite management. Also, A terrible sleep schedule is linked with gaining weight and terrible metabolic health.

Thus, maintaining a strict bedtime routine is important. Some of the things to keep in mind are-

  • Consult a doctor to see if you struggle with sleep apnea
  • Take 7-8 hours of sleep
  • No electronic gadget 1 hour before sleeping

Better quality sleep is directly linked with weight loss and reduced risk of developing a belly pouch. Get your bedsheets and pillows ready for a long and deep sleep tonight!

Losing Weight with Best Lifestyle Choices: 101 Guide

Skipping breakfasts, drinking no water, and still wondering how to lose weight with PCOS? It’s time to self-reflect on how to lose weight with PCOS and make some robust lifestyle changes.

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Source: Depositphotos

Some other lifestyle changes one can incorporate to combat PCOS include-

  • Boost your iron intake by including kale, spinach, eggs, and broccoli in your diet.
  • Focus on Stress Management Practices. Engage in yoga, or meditation, or go for a peaceful night walk.
  • Going for a social gathering? Remind yourself of a lower-fat diet only and no processed foods or added sugars at all.
  • Magnesium is equally imperative in the diet. Some of the PCOS-friendly magnesium-abundant foods are cashews, almonds, bananas, and spinach.
  • Consult a Medical Professional for Supplements rich in vitamins and minerals.
  • Limit or completely give up on your caffeine intake. Consuming coffee can make significant changes in estrogen levels and impact your hormonal balance. Replacing coffee with green tea will help one fight insulin resistance and boost energy significantly.
  • Consult a professional and get your Body mass index checked. Focus on a low-calorie diet if you are overweight. Remember the rule: Burn More Than You Consume!
  • Engage in Acupuncture. If your corporate life is hectic, take some time out on weekends for acupuncture. It is an effective treatment for polycystic ovarian syndrome, which can help weight loss, reduce chronically high cortisol levels, boost blood flow, and improve insulin sensitivity.
  • Consult a medical professional to create an herbal supplement plan and alternative therapy treatment for weight management.

Conclusion: Fight Hormonal imbalances and Manage Weight

Low-fat, healthy diet, maintained insulin levels, weight training! Voila! The plan for PCOS loss weight is scheduled. Hop on the ride of achieving a lean body mass index. Burn fat easily.


If you are considering the do’s and don’ts on how to lose weight with Polycystic ovary syndrome, this post serves as an ultimate guide. The following is discussed from an appropriate diet plan to a rigorous workout regime required to tackle weight gain.

Now that you are well acquainted with major treatment options kickstart your journey of losing weight easily and effectively. Happy weight regulation journey!

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  2. Hazlehurst, Jonathan M., et al. “How to manage weight loss in women with obesity and PCOS seeking fertility?.” Clinical endocrinology 97.2 (2022): 208-216. ↩︎
  3. Michalakis, Konstantinos, et al. “The complex interaction between obesity, metabolic syndrome and reproductive axis: a narrative review.” Metabolism 62.4 (2013): 457-478. ↩︎
  4. Khera, Mohit. “Male hormones and men’s quality of life.” Current Opinion in Urology 26.2 (2016): 152-157. ↩︎
  5. Wright, Pamela J., Robin M. Dawson, and Cynthia F. Corbett. “Social construction of biopsychosocial and medical experiences of women with polycystic ovary syndrome.” Journal of Advanced Nursing 76.7 (2020): 1728-1736. ↩︎
  6. Naschitz, Jochanan E., et al. “Heart diseases affecting the liver and liver diseases affecting the heart.” American heart journal 140.1 (2000): 111-120. ↩︎
  7. Alagawany, Mahmoud, et al. “The strategy of boosting the immune system under the COVID-19 pandemic.” Frontiers in Veterinary Science 7 (2021): 570748. ↩︎
  8. Laakso, Markku. “How good a marker is insulin level for insulin resistance?.” American journal of epidemiology 137.9 (1993): 959-965. ↩︎
  9. Phillips, Stuart M., Daniel R. Moore, and Jason E. Tang. “A critical examination of dietary protein requirements, benefits, and excesses in athletes.” International journal of sport nutrition and exercise metabolism 17.s1 (2007): S58-S76. ↩︎
  10. Franks, Stephen. “Polycystic ovary syndrome.” New England Journal of Medicine 333.13 (1995): 853-861. ↩︎

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