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One out of ten women of childbearing age deal with polycystic ovary syndrome or PCOS, a condition induced by imbalanced reproductive hormones. The imbalance affects ovulation and disrupts menstrual periods. Small sacs of fluid called cysts sometimes develop, and infertility is common. Women with PCOS often have elevated insulin levels, which leads to complications including insulin resistance and obesity. Studies suggest that the best PCOS diet is one that helps regulate insulin and weight. Evidence shows specific eating patterns that emphasize certain foods have the potential to alleviate symptoms.

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1. Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) Diet

Whole foods are unprocessed or minimally processed and free of artificial additives; examples include vegetables, fruits, legumes, meats, and unrefined plant oils. The DASH eating plan is one regimen that highlights these foods, and a 2015 study in Hormone and Metabolic Research observed that this diet promotes abdominal fat loss, lowers inflammation, and increases insulin sensitivity.

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