In terms of nutritional value, vegetables and fruit are almost identical. But a little extra knowledge can help you vary their taste and enjoy their individual Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) benefits to the fullest.
Fresh vegetables and fruit are an excellent source of vitamin C, though it’s best not to leave fruit lying around in a bowl for too long. Vitamin C in fruit diminishes over time and the same is true with vegetables. Cooking them also speeds up the process.
You can, however, get the most out of vegetables by eating them raw whenever possible, as in salads, and by buying the freshest possible produce. A good idea is to support your local farmers’ market, as the producers get vegetables from the soil to the consumer very quickly. The swift turnaround time between the vegetables being picked and sold means nutrient content tends to be more concentrated.
If you buy vegetables at a supermarket, it’s worth remembering that frozen vegetables such as peas contain more vitamin C than many so-called fresh ones.
Dried fruit can be an occasional tasty alternative to the fresh variety. Although it’s not as high in vitamin C or other water-soluble vitamins as fresh fruit, dried fruit is a good source of fiber, calcium and zinc. The drawback is that sugar content can be high, so just have a few pieces at a time and drink a glass of water to help you to digest them.
Another option is to cook fruit now and again. Although this process reduces the nutrient content as mentioned, it can give pears, apples and other hard fruits a deliciously different taste. Add spices such as nutmeg, cinnamon or a vanilla pod and use stevia to sweeten if the fruit is too tart.
Try apples stuffed with dried fruits such as sultanas and dried apricots. You can bake a whole trayful and eat them during the week with yogurt or fromage frais.
A balanced, nutritious PCOS diet combined with regular exercise can help reverse the symptoms of Insulin Resistance, an imbalance of glucose and insulin in the blood stream which is often an underlying cause of obesity. Insulin receptor sites on the cell wall enable glucose to pass through the wall and be converted to energy. Insulin Resistance vastly reduces the number of these receptor sites and sends unused glucose to the liver, where it is converted into fat and stored via the blood stream throughout the body.
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