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Gemma Atkinson: How To Manage Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) with Diet and Exercise

Polycystic Ovaries Syndrome (PCOS) is one of the most common hormonal problems faced by women 

Up to 10% of women are believed to have the condition which can cause irregular periods, weight gain, excessive hair growth, insulin resistance, and is associated with increased risk of diabetes and high cholesterol later in life. 

But there are some simple strategies with diet and exercise that can make a big difference to the impact of the condition that we utilise with female clients at Ultimate Performance who have PCOS.  

U.P. personal trainer Elliott Upton discussed the topic with Gemma Atkinson during a recent Instagram Q&A. 

Here he talks about the training, nutrition and supplementation protocols that women can use to improve symptoms of PCOS.  

GEMMA: We were asked specifically by a few women to talk about training with Polycystic Ovaries Syndrome (PCOS). 

You touched on going through ‘the change’, periods and optimizing your training. I still get messages about this today. 

ELLIOTT: There are two things you can do to help yourself if you have PCOS.  

Number one is weight train. Weight training is the best tool you can possibly use for making yourself more insulin sensitive because it will empty the cells of glycogen which will then allow them to become more sensitive to insulin when it is released into the bloodstream. Okay, and again, you have high circulating insulin when you have PCOS. 

Secondly, a diet favouring low carbs or certainly well-timed carbs – i.e. post-workout – versus a diet with more carbohydrates in. The rest of the time you are going to benefit far, far more from a diet higher in fat and lower in carbohydrates, but also higher in fibre. These things are really going to help with insulin sensitivity and preventing the kind of unwanted fat gain from insulin resistance and PCOS. 

You can supplement with anything that’s going to help to reduce pain and inflammation.  

So that would be omega-3 fish oils. That’s going to really, really help when taken in high doses of omega-3 fish oils, probably 5-10g a day. 

Curcumin is a supplement you can take – probably 2-3 curcumin capsules a day – which is going to be amazing for pain management and reducing inflammation and the kind of associated pain and issues with PCOS.  

Vitamin D3 is extremely good for helping with insulin sensitivity. So again, counteracting the insulin resistance that occurs as part of PCOS. 


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