Switching to unrefined carbs
First off, what is a carb? Wikki tells us "A carbohydrate is a biomolecule consisting of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen atoms, usually with a hydrogen–oxygen atom". But more importantly and on a non science basis, carbohydrates are the starches, fibres and sugars found in all food. Which is why when people cut out carbs in their life...that's basically impossible!
And the difference between refined and unrefined? Think of it as refined is anything processed - cakes, biscuits, breakfast cereals with sugars, fruit juice, white flour, white rice and anything made with these!
So what are some unrefined carbs you can switch to?
- brown rice
- wholemeal flours and in turn wholemeal bread, pasta
Making your diet rich in unrefined carbs is considered one of the best ways to prevent and revers insulin resistance, which is the crux of PCOS. And how come it works? Well, all carbs are broken down into glucose by your body, the fast they break down the worse they are for you and the more dramatic effect they have on your blood sugar levels. A rise in blood sugar levels triggers the pancreas to release insulin, the bigger the rise, the more insulin has to be released. When food, but let's talk carbs for now, are refined a lot of fibres are chucked out along with all the goodness but if they are unrefined the natural fibre remains in tact and therefore takes a lot longer to break down and therefore doesn't incur a spike in insulin.
By switching out refined foods, which break down quickly and cause a spike in our blood sugar level, you'll help your body to create a regular flow of blood sugar lifts which your body hardly has to respond to at all.
It all seems quite complicated doesn't it but the basic facts are - refined food cause blood sugar spikes which are bad because it leads to lots of insulin. Regular lifts of blood sugar created by unrefined or whole foods good so your body doesn't have to react with insulin.
A really easy thing to look for in food is the GI which is their Glycemic Index. This tells you how long foods will take to metabolise -the faster or higher GI will mean BAD and try to avoid.
If you want to go all out add protein to your unrefined carbs. This will improve their effect even more which is a bonus. And don't just think meat! Try fish, eggs, nut butters, humus, quinoa or seeds.