Shrinking The Bulge: How to Get Rid of PCOS Belly?

Amoha Jha
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how to get rid of pcos belly

One of the common symptoms of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is weight gain.

According to Clinical Medicine Insights, 38-88% of women with PCOS are overweight or obese.

In this type of weight gain, excess fat is accumulated around the abdomen, often referred to as ‘PCOS belly’. 

Dealing with a PCOS belly can be challenging, but with the right approach, achieving a healthier and more balanced body is possible. 

This article will explore effective strategies to help you get rid of your PCOS belly and improve your overall well-being.

Cause of PCOS belly fat

The abdominal fat in PCOS is often linked with insulin resistance.

Fact:
Insulin resistance is when your body cells can’t easily take up glucose from your blood.

A study was conducted to learn about abdominal fat quantity and distribution in women with PCOS and its relation to insulin resistance.

A total of 110 patients with PCOS and 112 people with similar weight were studied.

The results showed that compared with people without PCOS, patients with PCOS had more central abdominal fat. 

Moreover, studies have shown that PCOS is associated with higher central abdominal fat depots independent of Body Mass Index (BMI). 

How to get rid of PCOS belly fat

There are many ways to get rid of a PCOS belly. Here are some of the effective ways:

Metformin

As PCOS induced-belly fat results from insulin resistance, your doctor may prescribe you related medications.

Metformin is an insulin-sensitizing medication usually used to treat PCOS.

This medication functions by assisting in the restoration of the body’s insulin response. 

It works by reducing blood sugar production by the liver and decreasing the absorption of sugar by the intestines or stomach.

Thus, it decreases fat accumulation in the abdominal region. 

Additionally, Metformin can also aid in weight loss, indirectly contributing to the reduction of PCOS belly fat.

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Low glycemic index (GI) diet

A low GI diet is a dietary approach that takes into account the impact of various foods on blood sugar levels. 

GI involves categorizing foods on a scale of 0 to 100 based on their effect on blood sugar. 

Foods with a low GI have a minimal impact on blood sugar levels, while high GI foods can cause significant fluctuations. 

Therefore, low GI foods do not cause a rapid or substantial rise in insulin levels compared to foods high in sugar or heavily processed carbohydrates. 

A low-glycemic diet can include the following:

  • Whole grains
  • Proteins
  • Fruits
  • Vegetables
  • Healthy fats
Caution:
Consult your doctor or dietician before making any dietary changes, as it may lead to side effects.

Exercise regularly

Woman cyclingSource: Nullplus_from_Getty_Images
Woman cycling

Regular exercise aids in reducing PCOS belly fat through multiple mechanisms. 

Exercise increases energy expenditure, burns calories, and promotes weight loss. Thus, also reducing the abdominal fat in PCOS.

Moreover, it also improves insulin sensitivity, allowing cells to utilize glucose effectively and reducing the need for excess insulin production. 

This helps regulate blood sugar levels and prevents fat accumulation around the belly.

You can follow these activities to reduce belly fat:

  • Walking at a quick pace
  • Biking
  • Rowing
  • Running
  • Swimming 

Also, strength training exercises like planks and crunches help tone the abdominal muscles.

Reduce stress

Meditation to manage stressSource: yuriyseleznev
Meditation to manage stress

Managing stress levels is crucial in reducing belly fat. 

Studies have proved that chronic stress triggers the release of Cortisol, a hormone that promotes fat accumulation, particularly in the abdominal area. 

By actively managing stress, you can lower Cortisol levels and prevent the buildup of belly fat. 

Stress reduction techniques can help promote relaxation and balance hormonal levels.

You can try these stress management techniques:

  • Mindfulness meditation
  • Yoga
  • Deep breathing exercises
  • Engaging in activities that bring relaxation 

Prioritizing self-care and seeking support from mental health practitioners can contribute to better stress management.

Focus on portion control

Implementing portion control is a valuable strategy for reducing PCOS belly fat. 

Women with PCOS often have an increased level of Testosterone and Androgen.

A study stated that sex hormones play essential roles in regulating appetite and eating behavior in women.

It claimed that Testosterone might stimulate appetite.

Excess Testosterone can increase cravings for foods that contain high amounts of fats and calories, contributing to weight gain.

Portion control helps prevent overeating and allows you to create a calorie deficit, which is vital for weight loss. 

You can target excess fat accumulation around the abdomen by reducing overall calorie consumption, particularly from high-calorie and nutrient-poor foods. 

Being mindful of portion sizes, using smaller plates, measuring servings, and practicing mindful eating all contribute to portion control. 

Seek professional guidance

Healthcare professionals, such as gynecologists, registered dietitians, or endocrinologists, possess specialized knowledge and experience in managing PCOS and weight loss. 

They can provide personalized advice tailored to your specific needs, taking into account your medical history, hormonal imbalances, and individual goals. 

Professionals can help you create a customized meal plan, monitor your progress, and provide ongoing support and guidance. 

Their expertise ensures that you follow a safe and effective approach, maximizing the effectiveness of your efforts to reduce PCOS belly fat.

Takeaway

Dealing with PCOS belly fat can be challenging, but achieving a healthier and more balanced body with the right approach is possible. 

PCOS belly is often linked to insulin resistance, and medications like Metformin can help restore the body’s insulin response and decrease fat accumulation in the abdominal region.

Natural strategies such as following a low glycemic index diet, exercising regularly, reducing stress, and practicing portion control can be effective in reducing belly fat. 

Moreover, seeking professional guidance can expedite the weight loss process and help you reduce abdominal fat more effectively.

By implementing these strategies, women with PCOS can take control of their health and achieve their weight loss goals.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I lose belly fat with PCOS at home?

To lose belly fat with PCOS at home, focus on a low glycemic index diet, exercise regularly (walking, biking, or swimming), manage stress levels, and practice portion control. These strategies can help regulate insulin levels, promote weight loss, and reduce abdominal fat.

How can I reduce my tummy with PCOS?

There are many ways in which you can reduce your tummy with PCOS. You can try natural ways like having low glycemic index foods, exercising regularly, reducing stress, and focusing on portion control. You can also take Metformin, an insulin-sensitizing medication, with the guidance of a healthcare professional.

Is it possible to have a flat stomach with PCOS?

While it may be challenging, achieving a flatter stomach with PCOS through lifestyle changes and medication is possible. By following a balanced diet, engaging in regular exercise, managing stress, and seeking professional guidance, it is feasible to reduce belly fat and work towards a flatter stomach.

What are the best exercises for a PCOS belly?

The best exercises for a PCOS belly include a combination of cardiovascular exercises (such as brisk walking, cycling, or swimming) to burn calories and reduce overall body fat, along with strength training exercises (like planks and crunches) to target and tone the abdominal muscles, promoting a flatter and more defined stomach.

Citations:
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