In our last post we talked about PolyCystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) Awareness- the symptoms of PCOS and steps women can take for improving symptoms. In this post, we will delve deeper into one of those things and this post actually applies to everyone, not just women! In my opinion, and also proven in many studies, our nutrition is the #1 thing that can positively (or negatively) affect our health. UGH, that sounds like such a big thing to change though! However, it can be easy when we break it down into baby steps AND it is also proven that when we take baby steps, we are setting ourselves up for success with anything! As outlined in our post from last week, eating an organic, fresh food, low carbohydrate diet is a step for improving PCOS symptoms. So, let’s break that down into baby steps toward improving our nutrition and remember these apply to women, men and children.
3 Baby Steps to Improve Nutrition
1) Buy Organic Foods- In some studies organic foods have been proven to contain more nutrients than those grown with pesticides. You may think it's expensive to purchase organic, however there are thrifty ways to get the benefits of organic, like buying frozen veggies and fruits or buying fresh foods from farmers markets. It's important to note, you do not have to buy everything organic, check out EWG (Environmental Working Group) for their lists of the dirty dozen and clean fifteen for the best advice on which produce to buy organic. The EWG has lots great info on other products too, like makeup and skin care! You can find the EWG lists here: https://www.ewg.org/foodnews/
2) Buy and Eat Fresh Foods- Skip the heavily processed foods, they usually contain a lot of additives that are not good for our health. Fresh foods are among the most nutrient dense foods to consume and our bodies love them! If you are not used to prepping and eating fresh foods, you can find easy recipes on Pinterest and many recipe websites, just be sure to use the least processed and best ingredients possible. Try adding one new recipe using fresh foods weekly or every other week.
3) Eat a Low Sugar/ Low Carbohydrate Diet- Let’s break this one down into an easy step, as it can seem daunting. Do your best to eat a diet with no sugar added. Most added sugars show up in processed foods, like pasta sauce or sausages, along with many others. So read your labels, it will take some time at the start and you will quickly determine a food list that has no added sugars. Fresh foods do not contain added sugars, so always choose fresh foods first to reduce your sugar intake.
Start with a No Sugar added diet first and then as you get used to this build up to a Low Sugar or Low Carbohydrate diet. There are many different types of Low Carb diets out there, like Ketogenic, Paleo, Whole 30, South Beach, etc. Diets are not a One Size Fits All or One Type of Diet is best for everyone. That being said, my best advice is to study the diet, read articles by noted health conscious people or watch YouTube videos and get as much info as you can before you try one; keeping in mind that what you try may not fully work for you. Pay attention to how you feel (physically, mentally or emotionally) during eating and after consuming different foods. As you make note of what foods feel good to eat, you will come up with your own subscription for a diet/lifestyle that works best for you. This step does take time; it is important, however, and taking the time to figure out what works best for you is worth the effort!
Please contact us at Harmony Health Institute for additional information or to schedule an appointment for a speaking engagement or one on one session. Here's to your health and vitality!
Co-authored by Jody Holloway, Certified Nutrition Consultant Photo by Louis Hansel