Do you have trouble managing your PCOS symptoms while taking care of your crazy, awesome, busy, loving family?
If you answered yes, you’re not alone. This is 100% totally normal. So instead of pretending we have it all perfectly together, let’s talk about it!
PCOS Fit Revolution member Ellie is a homeschooling mother of three and small business owner. She is very familiar with the challenges of managing PCOS and a busy household. Today Ellie and I had an honest chat about how she and her family are slowly learning to live a PCOS-friendly lifestyle.
How Ellie is learning to manage her PCOS symptoms and her crazy-awesome family
If it does not work out the first time, don’t give up.
It took Ellie several tries to find a meal planning strategy that worked for her. If you try to make a healthy change, and it does not go well, DO NOT beat yourself up! Instead, try a different strategy. Sometimes you have to experiment with a few different methods to make a new habit stick-toable.
Pair new habits with daily chores.
Pair new habits, like meal planning, with chores you already do on a regular basis. For Ellie, that meant prepping her healthy lunch and breakfast when she packed her husband’s sack lunch each day.
Embrace slow changes.
When you have a family in tow, making big changes to your diet can feel overwhelming and may not be practical. The cool thing is that you can see good results by making one small change at a time. Preparing lunch ahead of time helped Ellie dramatically reduce her sugar intake and lose 4 pounds in two weeks.
Give yourself credit!
When you do something well, give yourself credit. Wives, mothers, and women, in general, put a lot of pressure on themselves to be perfect. Celebrate the positive changes you are making instead of comparing yourself to impossible ideals.
Find social support.
Ellie mentioned that she struggles with being too hard on herself. When Ellie feels down on herself, she reaches out to her fellow PCOS Fit Revolution members. This is so smart! Instead of feeling isolated and disappointed with herself she gets affirmations and encouragement from women who really understand what she’s going through.
Erika’s Pro Tips
A PCOS-friendly diet is good for the whole family.
I know many women living with PCOS feel like they have to eat differently from the rest of their family, and this is a huge source of stress. The truth is that a PCOS-friendly diet is beneficial for all humans! Slowly introduce healthier foods and traditions into your family so that you can adjust to a new lifestyle together. Let your family join you on this journey and share in the health benefits!
Longterm success happens one step at a time.
If you are eager to embark on a PCOS-friendly lifestyle, start with the basics. Instead of becoming a gluten-free vegan, cross-fit junkie in the space of one week, just try adding veggies to every meal and strength training a few times a week.
Diving head-first into a complicated and demanding series of lifestyle changes is not necessary for managing PCOS and you might even do more harm than good.
Rethink “kid food.”
Many parents have come to me with the same story… “I bought the (name of junk food here) for the kids, but I ate most of it myself and now I feel awful.”
Children do not need to eat highly processed foods. In fact, it is better if they ate as few of these foods as possible. Consider cutting back on the “kid food” you buy for the family and gradually start replacing it with real food. For example, replace fruit snacks with freeze-dried fruit, PB&J with Apple & Almond Butter Sandwiches and goldfish crackers with roasted almonds. Looking for more ideas? Check out this list of 45 Real Food Snacks for Kids by Stacy Karen of the blog Keeper of the Home.
Be patient and kind to yourself.
It is ok to slip up now and then, that is part of being human! The key to successful PCOS management is not being perfect; the key is to keep trying. Look for ways to make the most out of your current situation. Making lasting changes takes some creativity and resilience.