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Hi, I’m Alyssa! AKA, The PCOS Nutritionist Alyssa!

I’m a Registered Dietitian dedicated to helping you eliminate your PCOS symptoms with sustainable and realistic nutrition changes.

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Best Bread for PCOS: What To Look For & Top Brands

What’s the best bread for PCOS? If this is something you’ve been wondering, I’ve got you covered! 

If you’re new here, hi! I’m Alyssa, a registered dietitian who specializes in PCOS (I also have PCOS too!). Managing PCOS may seem overwhelming sometimes. My goal is to give you the evidence-based facts in an easy to understand way so that PCOS isn’t so confusing for you. 

This blog post will break down the benefits of bread, whether it should be gluten-free bread, and the best bread for PCOS (including brand recommendations). 

background image is various types of breads and grains with a text overlay stating best bread for pcos.

This post may contain affiliate links. This means that if you click on a link and make a purchase, I may make a small commission. 

How Your Diet Impacts PCOS

Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder that affects 6-12% of women of reproductive age. Some common symptoms of PCOS include irregular periods, infertility, weight gain, hair loss, hirsutism (excessive hair growth), acne, fatigue, and cravings.

PCOS has been linked to insulin resistance, chronic low-grade inflammation, and high androgen levels (aka male hormones such as testosterone and DHEA-S). These put you at a greater risk to develop other health conditions such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, gestational diabetes, high blood pressure, and even endometrial cancer. 

While there isn’t a known cure, the good news is that a balanced diet and lifestyle changes can dramatically reduce your PCOS symptoms and lower your risk of developing other chronic diseases. 

To read more about a PCOS-friendly diet (and snag a free meal plan), don’t miss this one: A Dietitian’s 7-Day PCOS Diet Plan (PDF Included).

Benefits of Bread

While bread often gets a bad reputation in society, especially by those who are following a low-carb or keto diet, it can actually be a great way to get more nutrients into your diet. 

The truth is that bread does have carbohydrates, which can increase your blood sugar and insulin levels. Our bodies need carbs though. Additionally, there are different types of carbs, and they have varying effects on your blood sugar levels. There’s also some tricks we can use to mitigate the high blood sugar levels (more on that later, though!). 

When it comes to bread, the type of bread you choose can make a big difference. Whole grain bread is going to be your best option because they have more fiber and nutrients than traditional white bread. 

Fiber is a type of carb that gets digested very slowly. It also causes a gradual increase in your blood sugar levels, as opposed to a quick spike. This will help you to feel full for longer periods of time, which may help curb carb cravings and overeating. 

Whole grains, such as whole wheat bread, contain prebiotics. You may have heard of probiotics before, right? Well, think of prebiotics as the food source for those healthy gut bacteria. Including a variety of high fiber foods and prebiotics helps to maintain a healthier gut, which is associated with better overall health.

Including bread in your diet may also promote more physical and mental satisfaction with meals, which can reduce cravings and help improve your relationship with food. 

a loaf of sliced bread on a cutting board.

Downsides of Bread for PCOS

The only downside I can see for including whole grain breads in your diet is how you’re eating them. If you’re eating bread by itself, your blood sugar level may go a little higher than we’d like since it’s predominantly carbohydrates. 

Don’t worry, there’s an easy fix for this though! Add some protein and healthy fats to your bread. This will help to slow down that blood sugar rise, which can improve insulin sensitivity. Some examples may be having scrambled eggs along with peanut butter toast, or having a turkey & cheese sandwich on whole wheat bread. When you approach bread with this mindset, it can absolutely be included as part of a healthy PCOS diet.

What about gluten?

There’s a lot of misinformation circulating around the internet and social media stating you need to follow a gluten-free diet for PCOS. Currently, there’s no research to suggest that everyone with PCOS should be following a gluten-free diet. And frankly, I just don’t find it to be necessary based on the hundreds of PCOS clients I’ve worked with who are able to include whole grain breads that contain gluten without any issues (myself included!).  

For more information on who should consider a gluten-free diet with PCOS, check out this post: Gluten and PCOS: Should You Really Go Gluten-Free?

Now, let’s dive into what you’ve been waiting for…the best PCOS bread brands!

Best Bread For PCOS

Whether you’re eating homemade bread or store-bought bread, there’s a few things I recommend looking for to help guide you in choosing the right bread. If you’re not already, getting comfortable with reading food labels is probably a good idea. 

Things to look for in a bread for PCOS:

  • At least 3 grams of fiber per slice (for most people, the higher the better)
  • The word “whole” should be the first ingredient on the ingredients list. Examples may be whole wheat flour or whole oat flour

Store Bought Bread

As nice as homemade bread sounds, that’s just not reality for the majority of us. Store bought breads are convenient, cost effective, and nutrient dense options. I’m going to review a few of my favorite store bought PCOS-friendly bread options. Don’t forget to add one of these to your PCOS grocery list!

Dave’s Killer Bread

Dave’s Killer Bread is kind of the new kid on the block, but quickly rising in popularity for good reason. This seed bread is not only tasty, but it’s a great source of fiber, protein, and lots of micronutrients thanks to the seeds it uses. One slice of the 21 Whole Grains & Seeds bread will give you 5 grams of fiber, 5 grams of protein, some omega-3 fatty acids, and other micronutrients like B vitamins.

Ezekiel Sprouted Grain Bread

Ezekiel bread is another great option. It’s made using organic ingredients and will provide you with 3 grams of fiber and 5 grams of protein per slice. This bread is located in the freezer section and should be kept frozen until you’re ready to eat a slice.

Silver Hills Bakery

Silver Hills Little Big Bread has small slices but a big flavor. One serving, or two slices, will provide you with 5 grams of fiber and 7 grams of protein. 

Arnold’s Whole Grain Breads

Arnold’s (or Oroweat) is another great option with 3 grams of fiber and 5 grams of protein per slice. This bread is readily available in most grocery stores. 

Gluten Free Bread

Ok, I know I already mentioned that going gluten-free isn’t necessary for most people with PCOS. But for those who truly do need to be gluten free, whether it be for celiac disease or a known gluten intolerance, gluten-free breads are a necessity and I’m not going to leave you hanging! 

For gluten-free breads, looking at the ingredients list may not be the best guide since many GF breads don’t contain the word “whole” at the beginning. Instead, look for higher fiber options with at least 3 grams of fiber per slice. It may be a little bit more difficult to find this since popular gluten-free bread brands are pretty notorious for having virtually no fiber in them. 

Some brands that fit the bill for gluten free breads are: Happy Campers, Young Kobras, and BFree Brown Seeded.

infographic with photos of different bread brands for PCOS.

PCOS & Bread FAQs

Can I eat bread if I have PCOS?

Yes, absolutely! Choose whole grain breads that have at least 3 grams of fiber per slice. Be sure to add some protein and fat to your bread to help promote more balanced blood glucose levels. 

Can I eat whole wheat bread if I have PCOS?

Yes, you can eat whole wheat bread if you have PCOS. Whole wheat bread is a good source of fiber, a small amount of protein, and various micronutrients to improve your health. If you have celiac disease or gluten intolerance, you’ll want to choose a gluten-free bread. 

Is whole wheat bread good for PCOS?

Yes, whole wheat bread is considered a PCOS friendly bread. If you’re having whole wheat bread as part of your meal, make sure to add some protein and fat to the meal also. 

Is sourdough bread good for PCOS? 

Depending on the sourdough bread, it can be good for PCOS. Look for a high fiber sourdough bread with at least 3 grams of fiber per slice. Sourdough starters are a good source of probiotics, which can improve gut health; however, you’re probably not receiving any of these probiotics by the time the bread has been baked and you’re eating it.

The Bottom Line

Bread, especially whole grain breads, can be an important part of a healthy PCOS diet. It can provide a good source of fiber and micronutrients to help balance blood sugar levels and keep you feeling full and satisfied. Whole wheat bread also contains prebiotics that can improve your gut health. 

Look for whole grain breads that have at least 3 grams of fiber per slice. When eating bread, pair it with a good source of protein and fat for optimal blood sugar balance.  

Most people do not need to eliminate gluten or only eat gluten-free bread to be able to manage their PCOS symptoms. 

Disclaimer: this is for educational purposes only. It is not intended to be substituted for medical advice for polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) or any other medical condition. Consult with your healthcare provider or registered dietitian for personalized dietary recommendations. 

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