Inositol and PCOS

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What is it?

Inositol is a member of the B-vitamins and a component of the cell membrane.
There are many reasons women with PCOS may want to take this supplement
as inositol has been linked to improved insulin, triglyceride, and testosterone
levels, as well as improved blood pressure, ovulation and weight loss.

PCOS & inositol

Only a handful of studies were conducted on inositol and PCOS, but all showed
favorable results, especially when it came to fertility. In the most recent and
largest study, 25 women received inositol for six months. Twenty-two out of the
25 (88%) patients had one spontaneous menstrual cycle during treatment, of
whom 18 (72%) maintained normal ovulatory activity. A total of 10 pregnancies
(40% of patients) were obtained. It is believed that inositol increases the action of
insulin in women with PCOS, thereby improving ovulation, decreasing
testosterone, and lowering blood pressure and triglycerides.

Side effects

Generally, inositol well tolerated but can cause nausea, fatigue, headaches and
dizziness. No interactions with herbs and supplements are known. There is
concern, however, that high consumption of inositol might exacerbate bipolar
disorder. Inositol is sold as myo-inositol (most common in the U.S.) or d-chiroinositol.
Dosage is 200 to 2,000 mg daily. As always, check with your physician
before starting inositol or any other dietary supplement.

Source: Papaleo, E., Unfer, V., Baillargeon, J.P., et al. (2007). Myo-inositol in patients with
polycystic ovary syndrome: A novel method for ovulation induction. Gynecological
Endrocrinology,23 (12), 700-703.

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