Should Red Wine be a part of your PCOS Diet?

One of the questions that I am often asked is, “If I am going to have a drink (Make that an alcoholic drink), what should I have? What is least likely to impact on my PCOS?” Well, recent research suggests that there is something in red wine that might help manage your PCOS hormones. So, let’s have a look at what you need to know about PCOS and wine and if is should be a part of your PCOS diet.

Resveratrol for PCOS

There was recently a piece of research done using a powerful anti-oxidant called resveratrol. Resveratrol occurs naturally in many foods such as peanuts, grapes, some blueberries and red wine. So, why could it help your PCOS?

Well, researchers investigated the effects of resveratrol on 34 women with PCOS. They were split into two groups – one given a resveratrol supplement while the second group was given a placebo (1). All of the women were matched in terms of BMI, testosterone, fasting insulin and fasting glucose.

The results were clear – there was a significant drop (23%) in serum testosterone and much better insulin management.

In fact, the researchers even suggest that the results are comparable to that of the birth control pill or metformin. That is really huge and promising.

Resveratrol is an insulin sensitizer

Another huge benefit of resveratrol is that it has also been shown to improve insulin sensitivity and reduce insulin secretion from the pancreas (2). This is so important because in PCOS, insulin impacts on our ovaries and adrenal glands, causing them

to produce too much testosterone. So, the more insulin you need, the more insulin your pancreas is releasing, the more your testosterone levels are likely to rise, the worse your PCOS will get.

Controlling insulin levels is one of the corner stones of the PCOS diet.


PCOS and Wine

Now, all of that sounds very exciting. But, to get the same results, you would need to drink 100 bottles of red wine per day! That sounds a bit excessive to me!

In the research study, women took 1500mg of resveratrol per day (1). It’s nigh impossible to get to that quantity every day simply through your diet.

So, should red wine be a part of your PCOS Diet?

Here’s the bottom line. You might be on a girls night out and fancy a drink. Or you may be snuggled up in front of the fire with a good book and want something to drink. If you are going to have a drink anyway, red wine would be a good choice. There are a lot of other health benefits to drinking red wine, and if helping to improve your PCOS even in the smallest way, I would feel okay about including it in my PCOS Diet.

All things in moderation

Now, it would be completely irresponsible of me to do an article on red wine as part of the PCOS Diet without also giving you a word of caution. Whilst red wine has some benefits, excessive alcohol consumption is not going to help you or your PCOS. Here are some helpful guidelines around alcohol consumption.

So, the next time you’re going to enjoy a glass of wine, opt for red.

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Tarryn Poulton

Tarryn Poulton

Tarryn Poulton is a PN1 Certified Nutrition Coach and PCOS expert who has been a leader in the online PCOS space for over 8 years. Tarryn has the support of leading clinicians from around the world who support her scientific approach to understanding and talking about PCOS this includes all medical journals and ongoing research. You can read more about Tarryn and the team here.

2 Responses

2 Responses

  1. As far as resveratrol supplements, is there a recommendation as to what time of day to take them? Single dose or multiple?

  2. Hi Tarryn, I have been following you on Facebook for quite a while now. I was diagnosed with PCOS in my early 20’s. I’m now 47. My 13 year old daughter was diagnosed as being pre PCOS in November 2016. I would like to subscribe to your PCOS starter kit. We live in South Africa so I’m not sure if we will be able you receive all your material. Please will you let me know if you are able you help us in South Africa. Kind regards Yvette

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