The Tea on Keto and PCOS with Dr. Frank

Last week, I left you all with a cliff-hanger. Why does Dr. Frank recommend a keto template for the people he works with? What are the pros and cons of keto? Did you know there are different versions of this popular diet? Cause I sure didn’t!

We also talk about PCOS and the effects of dairy and hormones for females and our endocrine system. Let’s pick up where we left off!

Jeanette: When you started working with me, you started me on the ketogenic diet, which I followed through with and continue to eat mostly that way today. Would you recommend that to everyone you work with? How would you go about dealing with someone who might be vegan or vegetarian? 

Dr. Frank: …we recommend keto because it controls blood sugar. If you don’t control blood sugar, you don’t control weight. If you’re not controlling blood sugar and weight, you’re not controlling inflammation. A Vegan diet in reality consists of things that are very, very high in carbs and starch. They do typically tend to lack in certain things like B-vitamins, it’s very hard to find a rich source in omega 3 fatty acids like you find in a piece of fish as compared to a bean. So typically, my approach is explain to a person what I would want them to do, and if they say that doesn’t fit into their agenda for one reason or another, then I will refer them to another provider – someone who’s willing to maybe take that approach. But for me, everyone starts with a keto template, and then we build from that. And even saying eating all keto is tough. Keto really focuses on tons of fats and tons of protein, so it always depends on what variation of keto you’re looking at. Some variations say “eat all of the bacon you want, eat all of the cheese you want,” and I wouldn’t encourage someone to eat all of the bacon or all of the cheese they want. You want to look at the quality of the fat, and some keto diets don’t differentiate between fat quality. They just kind of say “fat is fat, so eat as much of it as you want,” instead of saying eat omega 3 fats from fish are very different from omega 9 fats from vegetable oil or canola oil. You will still lose some weight on those things, but those oils are very inflammatory and rich in things that will raise cholesterol. The type of keto diet your following matters. We are not real big on dairy with people, but we are really big on vegetables, and a lot of people forget that green leafy vegetables are just a source of fibrous carbohydrates. Some keto diets will really limit vegetables, but we encourage tons of vegetables because of the nutrients in them. That’s why I say this is a modified keto diet, because this diet focuses on controlling a persons blood sugar.

J: And when it comes to dairy, I have PCOS and I know you work with women who have PCOS, you said it’s okay to have a little bit of cheese here and there. I’ve heard that you’re not supposed to have any dairy with PCOS. When you work with these women, do you flat out say “don’t have dairy”?

F: I would say the easiest approach for someone – don’t have dairy. If there was really a sticking point, I would say we can test to see if someone has dairy problems, like lactose intolerance. That person I would say absolutely do not have dairy. But the problem with dairy is that I would never recommend someone to drink milk or to have a brick of cheese as a snack. Dairy, due to our farming agriculture, how these cows are raised, and how milk is produced, it’s been greatly influenced by added hormones and antibiotics. That really messes up the female endocrine system, and male, so it would be easiest to say don’t do any dairy. You can lose weight while consuming it – it will slow down weight loss, but from a hormonal standpoint, just because of the nature of how we get our dairy today and how it can be modified, it’s easiest to just stay away. We usually say if you want to sprinkle some cheese on top of something, go ahead. Beyond that, I wouldn’t touch it. It raises blood sugar levels and it’s very active in hormones – it causes acne issues too. PCOS and dairy can be a huge problem when it comes to acne for females. When you do blood work, you see how it effects estrogen and progesterone, and when you eliminate it, you can see how these things level out. In really limited quantities, full fat cheese can be okay for you, but I would never recommend it beyond that.

Next week, we are switching gears over to exercise! Stay tuned as to why weight lifting is a great form or exercise, along with Dr. Frank’s #1 tip for being successful in your weight loss journey!

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