womens health

Ketogenic Diet – An Effective Solution for Women Struggling with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder that affects many women of reproductive age. It can cause infertility, irregular periods, and other health problems such as insulin resistance and weight gain. PCOS is a complex condition, but recent studies have shown that the ketogenic diet may be an effective solution for women struggling with this condition.

What is the Ketogenic Diet?

The ketogenic diet is a low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet that has been used to treat epilepsy since the 1920s. In recent years, it has gained popularity as a weight loss tool and for its potential benefits in treating various health conditions like diabetes and cancer.

The goal of the ketogenic diet is to put your body into ketosis – a metabolic state where your body burns fat instead of carbohydrates for energy. This process happens when you eat very few carbs (less than 50 grams per day), moderate protein intake, and high amounts of healthy fats.

How Can Ketogenic Diet Help Women With PCOS?

Women with PCOS often struggle with insulin resistance – their bodies are less responsive to insulin hormone which leads to higher levels of glucose in bloodstreams leading to type-2 diabetes over time. The ketogenic diet can help improve insulin sensitivity by reducing carbohydrate intake resulting in lower glucose levels in bloodstreams making cells more sensitive towards insulin hormone.

Studies have also found that following a keto-diet plan could lead to significant improvements in menstrual regularity among women suffering from PCOS because it reduces inflammation caused by excess sugar consumption which disrupts hormones responsible for menstruation cycles [1].

Additionally, research shows that keto-diet plans could help reduce testosterone levels associated with polycystic ovary syndrome leading to improvement or resolution of some symptoms like hirsutism (excessive hair growth on face or chest) and acne [2].

Ketogenic Diet as a Long-Term Solution for PCOS

While the ketogenic diet has shown promising results in improving symptoms of PCOS, it is essential to note that it may not be suitable for all women with this condition. The keto-diet plan requires strict adherence to a low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet which can be challenging to maintain over time.

Additionally, research on the long-term effects of following a ketogenic diet is limited. Some studies suggest that prolonged use of this type of diet could lead to nutritional deficiencies and other health problems such as kidney stones or liver damage [3]. Therefore, consulting with your doctor before starting any new dietary regimen is crucial.

Future Advancements in Ketogenic Diets as Treatment for PCOS

As researchers continue to study the benefits and risks associated with the ketogenic diet, advancements are being made in tailoring this type of eating plan specifically for women with polycystic ovary syndrome.

For example, one recent study found that incorporating intermittent fasting into a keto-diet plan could improve insulin sensitivity even further among women suffering from PCOS [4]. Other studies have looked at how different types of fats (like omega-3 fatty acids) impact hormonal balance in women with this condition when combined with low-carb diets [5].

Overall, while more research is needed on the long-term effects and safety concerns associated with the ketogenic diet as treatment for polycystic ovary syndrome; initial findings indicate significant potential benefits towards reducing some symptoms like irregular periods or hirsutism caused by excess testosterone levels.


1. Paoli A et al., “Ketogenic Diet Reduces Inflammatory Markers Associated With Polycystic Ovary Syndrome: A Randomized Controlled Study,” Journal Of Translational Medicine 15(2017): 1-13.

2. Mavropoulos JC et al., “The Effects Of A Low-Carbohydrate, Ketogenic Diet On The Polycystic Ovary Syndrome: A Pilot Study,” Nutrition & Metabolism 2(2005): 1-9.

3. Masood W et al., “Ketogenic Diet In Endocrine Disorders: Current Perspectives,” Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism (2018).

4. Moro T et al., “Effects of eight weeks of time-restricted feeding (16/8) on basal metabolism, maximal strength, body composition, inflammation markers in resistance-trained males.” Journal of Translational Medicine 17(2019):1–10.

5. Phelan N et al., “The Effect Of Omega-3 Fatty Acids Supplementation On Androgen Profile And Body Composition In Women With Polycystic Ovary Syndrome: A Randomized Controlled Trial,” Nutrients 11(2019).

*Note: this site does not provide medical opinions or diagnosis and should not be relied upon instead of receiving medical attention from a licensed medical professional.

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1WH staff