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Inositol and PCOS

Updated May 2022

Since writing the Honest, Hairy Truth articles, I’ve had a lot of questions and feedback from many of you wanting more information on Inositol and PCOS. For some of those who have tried it, the results have been dramatic, with one woman losing 21 pounds in a month since taking it. For some of those who have tried it, the results have been dramatic I have to say that my results have not been as dramatic but I have seen a slight improvement in my weight and hirsutism.

Inositol is absolutely one of my favourite PCOS supplements and, together with a good PCOS diet, it has made a huge impact on my symptoms. To find out more about how to manage PCOS naturally, you should check out my FREE training, “How to Manage PCOS Naturally.

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What is Inositol?

Inositol is a naturally occurring substance that used to be considered as one of the B vitamins. The body is able to produce it on its own, though, so it isn’t considered a vitamin anymore.

Inositol is the common name given to Myo-Inositol. So generally, if you see Inositol supplements, it is Myo-Inositol on the bottle.

This is important because myo-inositol is part of a family of 9 forms of inositol, otherwise known as an “isomer”. This gets a bit technical so bear with me. An isomer has the same technical composition and arrangement of molecules but the placement of the atoms differs.

Huh? Basically, there are nine compounds in the Inositol family that are all basically identical except for one minor change between each. This means that if your body is lacking in one form of Inositol, it can convert one of the other compounds into the one that is lacking.

 

What does Inositol do?

pcos and inositol two spoons with white powder and two white capsulesIt seems that Inositol has two jobs really. The first one is that it is important in the insulin receptors of each cell. The receptor is on every cell wall and works as a lock and key mechanism. Insulin needs to fit just right for the receptor to open and let the insulin work its magic on the cell. If the receptor isn’t working very well, your body produces more insulin to compensate, leading to insulin resistance. Inositol helps the receptor work more efficiently so Insulin can bind properly the first time, causing your body to not produce too much insulin.

Its second job involves the Insulin signaling pathway. Now, I’m not a Biochemist but my understanding of inositol’s role in insulin signalling is as follows. As insulin attaches to the cell wall, it sets in a motion a series of changes within the cell. Inositol plays a role in this series of changes and it is important for insulin to be effective within the cell. (1)

Inositol is also involved in stopping insulin’s effect on the cell. In a sense, it helps to flip the off switch.

Right, that’s most of the technical stuff over, I hope.

 

Inositol and PCOS

Let’s move on to the good stuff… Why we should all be taking Myo-inositol.

I could give you loads of research articles but I’m just going to give you the summarized version of the effects of Inositol on PCOS (2):

 

  • Increased progesterone
  • Increased SHBG (sex hormone binding globulin) – Deals with any free testosterone in our blood stream
  • Lowered testosterone levels
  • Improved insulin sensitivity
  • Decreased luteinizing hormone
  • Induced weight loss (that sounds good to me)
  • As mentioned in my Honest Hairy Truth post, it has also been shown to be effective in managing hirsutism
  • OVULATION!

 

PCOS and inositol happy womanThere is also some good research on how myo-inositol supplementation helps with fertility and pregnancy. Inositol has been shown to:

    • Restore normal ovulatory activity and ovulation induction, leading to improved fertility in women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
    • Improve egg quality and pregnancy rate in women with failed IVF and thereby improve IVF outcomes
    • Improve pregnancy rate and lower cancellation rate in women with PCOS

Although myo-inositol is safe to take throughout pregnancy and whilst breastfeeding, please check with your doctor if you do fall pregnant while taking it.

 

How much and how?

Inositol is available in capsules and powdered form. The research studies were conducted using 4g per day of inositol and combining it with Folic Acid. If you take 4g in capsule form, you’ll land up taking a lot of capsules (I found 500mg capsules so I would need to take 8 a day).

The powdered form is mixed in a glass of water. It has a slightly sweet taste and I can hardly taste it. So, when I started taking Inositol, I started with the Jarrow Formulas Inositol Powder, 227g which is available on Amazon.com

Ovasitol from Theralogix is also a great option. It combines two kinds of inositols – D-chiro-inositol and myo-inositol – in a 40:1 ratio. This is the same ratio that these two inositols are found in the body. There is strong evidence for both D-chiro and myo-inositol and PCOS. So, this is what I now take. You can get Ovasitol (using PRC code 144144) at the best price here.

You may also have heard of Cystofert for PCOS. Cystofert is a similar combination of D-chiro-inositol and Myo-Inositol but it only has 1100mg per tablet, as opposed to the recommended 2g of inositol per dose.

 

Some Commonly Asked Questions About Myo-Inositol Supplementation

 

How long does Myo-inositol take to work in women with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome?

We all tend to want results and want them now (I’m exactly the same!) Some women report seeing improvements within a week – weight loss or a reduction in cravings. But, we need to remember that it takes at least 3 months for an egg to be developed in the ovary. So, we need to give Inositol at least 3 months before we can see maximum benefits. So be patient and give it some time. It will be worth the wait!

 

How long does it take for myo-inositol to regulate periods?

PCOS and Inositol periodWe know that one of the hallmarks of PCOS is an irregular menstrual cycle. This can make trying to conceive incredibly frustrating!

As mentioned already, it takes 3. months for oocyte maturation and therefore you need to be ton inositol treatment for at least 3 months before you can expect a more regular period.

 

Do you know of any myo inositol PCOS weight loss success stories?

When it comes to losing weight with PCOS, it’s always a bit of a tricky one. many of us want to lose weight but our hormones are playing havoc!

The good news is that Inositol has been shown to help with weight loss in PCOS.

One study compared 3 weight loss methods in obese PCOS patients. They compared the use of Myo-inositol, diet and combined therapy myo inositol (mi) and d-chiro inositol (dci). The results showed that those women who used the combined mi and dci, as well as a good PCOS diet, had the most accelerated weight loss (3).

I have been using Inositol (Ovasitol in particular), and found that when I initially started taking inositol, my cravings were much more under control and I did have some success with weight loss.

 

Are there any side effects to taking inositol?

There are very few side effects when taking myo-inositol. It is a very safe supplement to take.

Some people may experience mild side effects such as nausea, stomach cramps and headaches, which usually resolve after a few days.

 

Can Inositol help with Gestational Diabetes?

PCOS and Inositol pregnant woman checking blood sugar levelsOne of the many impacts of PCOS is the increased risk of gestational diabetes. The wonderful news is that myo inositol reduces the risk of gestational diabetes.

A randomized controlled trial have compared women who have been diagnosed with gestational diabetes using an oral glucose tolerance test. Some women supplemented with myo inositol whilst others took folic acid on it’s own (4).

Those women who took myo inositol showed increased insulin sensitivity and a lowered risk of developing gestational diabetes.

 

Can you get Inositol Over the Counter?

The good news is that inositol is available over the counter, without a prescription. If you are concerned about taking inositol, please do speak to your doctor before you start taking inositol as part of your PCOS treatment plan.

 

Do you recommend Myo inositol administration with Metformin?

PCOS and Inositol thumbs upIf you are struggling with insulin resistance and glucose metabolism, you may have been prescribed Metformin, an insulin-sensitizing drug.

Both metformin and inositol help to improve insulin sensitivity. This means that taking both together may result in lower glucose levels. Some of the women that I have worked with have found that taking slightly less inositol can prevent this.

If you are uncertain about the effect of Metformin and Inositol together, please do speak to your doctor before starting on Inositol.

 

Summing it Up

So, all of the research on Inositol looks promising for women with PCOS. I have been taking Inositol for years and really feel the difference in my cravings when I am not taking it. I’d love to hear about your experiences of Inositol and if it’s helped you with any of your PCOS symptoms. Please leave me a comment below and we can share the inositol love!

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References:

1Hooper, Claudie. “An Overview of Insulin Signaling Pathways | Abcam.” An Overview of Insulin Signaling Pathways | Abcam, www.abcam.com, 0 0 2000, https://www.abcam.com/pathways/overview-of-insulin-signaling-pathways.

2“Miscarriage Research – Inositol.” Miscarriage Research – Inositol, sites.google.com, https://sites.google.com/site/miscarriageresearch/supplements-and-miscarriage/d-chiro-inositol. Accessed 9 May 2022.

3Le Donne, M., et al. “Effects of Three Treatment Modalities (Diet, Myoinositol or Myoinositol Associated with D-Chiro-Inositol) on Clinical and Body Composition Outcomes in Women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome – PubMed.” PubMed, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov, 1 Mar. 2019, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30915778/.

4Tahir, F., and Z. Majid. “Inositol Supplementation in the Prevention of Gestational Diabetes Mellitus – PMC.” PubMed Central (PMC), www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov, 1 Sept. 2019, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6823013/.

MORE Related Posts

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.

Table of Contents

200 Responses

200 Responses

  1. Hi Tarryn

    I have just started taking all of the B vitamins you have mentioned, individually but have just got wise to the vitamin B complex so that i can take them all in one which is great but with this containing Inositol do i still need to take it in a drink too, I’ve bought the powdered version and take this every morning in fresh orange juice.

    1. Hi Georgina,

      If your Vitamin B complex had 4g of Inositol then it will be fine to just take the Complex. Otherwise, I’d keep going with the Inositol as well.

      Tarryn

  2. Inositol what tablet form should I take could you send me a link for the tablet form please there’s so meny on amazon don’t know witch one to order thanks

  3. Hi Tarryn,

    I am on 8th month of pregnancy, I am diagonised with gaestation dibetities. Could you please advise if it is safe to take Myo-Inositol during last timester of pregnancy. My 31 weeks of pregnancy going on.

    Regards
    ila

    1. Hi Ila,

      I would check with your doctor or midwife. There is some research that Inositol can protect your baby from the effects of high blood sugars. But, it has also been shown to induce labour in high doses so I think you should get some guidance on how much is safe to take. Here is some research on Inositol during pregnancy: https://sites.google.com/site/miscarriageresearch/supplements-and-miscarriage/d-chiro-inositol

      Hope that helps and good luck with the rest of your pregnancy!

      Tarryn

  4. Hi Tarryn
    As well as having PCOS I also have a thyrioid issue – I am on 100mcg of thyroxine. I have been trying to coceive for 2.5 years now and been on metformin, clomid… the works for this length of time. I want to do something different and came across your site. Do you think it is ok to take inositol with thyroxine. I also take a mutlivit with 4oomcg folic acid – do you think that is ok or shall I take a separate tablet for folic acid.
    Thanks for your help
    Catriona

  5. Hi Tarryn,

    I came across your website when researching to find updated information on PCOS. I’ve had PCOS since my late teens. My husband and I were married in 2005 and tried to conceive for years. Late 2011 I decided to talk to a fertility specialist and went through once cycle of IVF treatment and it worked! We were blessed with our son in April 2012. I’m wanting to have another baby in the near future and I want to do it naturally due the expense of IVF. I read about what you posted on Pregnitude and other ladies comments on how well it worked for them. I’m so glad to find this website, I think your doing such a wonderful job giving your insight on PCOS and providing great information on this topic. For a long time I felt so alone in having PCOS but I realized that I am not alone but just part of a special group of women who are a little different.

    Thank you!

  6. Inositol what tablet form should I take could you send me a link for the tablet form please there’s so meny on amazon don’t know witch one to order thanks
    X

  7. Hi Tarryn,
    I am so thankful to have found your website! I am 30 yrs old and was diagnosed about 10 yrs ago. After many side effects from the usual meds and frustration with trying to lose weight and battle Hirsutism, I had sort of given up on trying to manage my PCOS (stupid, I know). Now, 10 years and over 60 pounds later, I am desperate to get my life back!
    Regarding the Inositol, I was wondering if I should take the Pregnitude packets even if I’m not trying I conceive? They just seem more convenient. Also, I’m sure it’s somewhere in your web site but I was wondering if you could give me a list of all supplements I should be taking? One more thing :)…. I recently started taking Garcinia Cambogia supplements to lose weight and was curious if you are familiar with or have any insights into taking it with PCOS?

    I know it’s a lot… I would appreciate any advice you might have.
    Thanks again for such a great site!
    Stephanie

  8. Thank you for this post Tarryn,
    I purchased the inositol powder and will be taking it in the morning and evening. Do you know if it needs to be taken on an empty stomach for better results? I take it right after eating breakfast and dinner but I wonder if I should have it before I eat.

  9. Hello, I just ordered my first box of Pregnitude, and I was wondering – do you take it before eating ? or with food as in after eating ? currently I have had PCOS for ten years, trying to conceive for the past 6 months, I am 38 and my doctor put me on birth control for a few months to help regulate my cycle and decrease my testosterone, I also take a prenatal and metformin. I am very hopeful about pregnitude and hope to get off the Birth control and start working on trying to have a baby again..

  10. Hi! I ran across your website as I was searching PCOS diet, etc. and I am so glad that I found it! I have been on BC all my life and when I finally came off of it to try to conceive, BOOM. No ovulation and my body was attacked by PCOS. I have been struggling for the past two years with hormones and finally started to get a hold on them, though not completely. I started taking Pregnitude about six months ago and I have to tell you, it has done WONDERS for me. I am not at a 28 day cycle by any means, but each cycle gets a little bit shorter. It has improved my acne and ovulation cycle. My doctor also recommended N-Acetyl Cysteine…anyone know a whole lot about that??? I definitely do not do dairy for the reasons you stated on your article. I still struggle with storing fat in my lower abdominal area though. Sometimes I don’t know if I am bloated from GI issues or just storing more fat there. I work out five days a week, and eat well and still have issues with this. This is so foreign to me! Help!

    1. Hi Stefanie,

      Sounds like you have made some really good progress in getting your symptoms under control. The belly fat is a big issue for me too and is a pain to lose (one of the gripes with PCOS). I have heard of NAC but not tried it myself. Sounds like it might be worth a go, though!

      Tarryn

  11. Hello! I’m new to the site and actually just got diagnosed with PCOS tyesterday. I’m only 20 years old so I want to have this maintained so I can actually concieve when I want to!

    In regards to this powder/pill is the best place to buy it amazon? Will i not be able to find it in a local drug store? I’m shopping today for foods for my new PCOS diet and I wasn’t sure if i’d be able to find the Inositol there.

    Thanks!!

  12. Hello

    If it safe to take inositol & metformin together or should I substitute metformin with inositol ?? If I don’t take my metformin I don’t get my period for the month.

  13. Hello
    I would like to ask you? Is it safe to take inositol & metformin together or should I substitute inositol for the metformin I have been taking?

    Thanks

  14. Hi everyone, ok I need some major advice… I started taking the inositol powder on April 1. I have been taking it twice a day. Last Wednesday I started having brown discharge with pink. Every day since its been brownish discharge. Today I have been having the discharge but it almost is hunky as in ovulation. Could this just be things starting to move down there or could this be ovulation? I definitely feel like period, bloated etc… But not sure what to think… help!,

  15. Hi tarryn i really want to upgrade but i cant as money is required. N i cant pay the amount.
    I really want your help as im also suffering from pcos.
    I also want my meal plans and help in what to do.
    Im only 16 years n my height is 5.7’5 n weight is 80kg
    Please reply.
    Thankyou.

  16. Hi Tarryn! I’m so glad I have found your site. I’ve been suffering from PCOS throughtout my teenage life only blaming it on puberty and was diagnosed with PCOS just last summer. I’m 21. It has stolen my feminism. It is literally ruining my life because I was diagnosed with depression and used to have multiple panic attacks, and eating disorder. I didn’t understand why my body was getting more and more hairy like a freaking monkey whereas I was shedding my hair on my head. I took BCP for a year and yet there was no significant improvement on my face. I was still breaking out like crazy and my face now looks like a war zone. I do so much to lose weight, limit my calorie intake, stuff myself with protein, workout my ass off and within 3 months, I only see a little result by losing hardly 6lbs.
    Okay negative points aside, I’m so happy that I found people who understands this and going through the same and fighting with this awful thing. I heard spironolactone was very helpful in curing acne. Have you ever tried it? Do you think it’s a bit too much if I use BCP, spironolactone and inositol all at once? You can tell right? I’m desparate; to lose weight and to have a clear skin.
    Please help me!

  17. So if I am taking the Jarrows brand, do i need to take 1.6 teaspoon daily, in order to reach the 4g? It says 1000mg = 1g, and each 1/4 teaspoon of the Jarrows = 600mg.
    Or am I missing something? Sorry, confused…

  18. I am ordering some today. I will give you an update later. I am excited to try something new. I got off all my prescriptions because they weren’t working. I want to try to manage my PCOS with diet, exercise and supplements.

  19. Hello,

    I purchased the Jarrows Inositol. I’m only taking 1/4 teaspoon and in a week I lost 2 pounds. I also try to watch my carbs and workout but I usually gain weight if I cheat. This time I didn’t gain weight over the weekend. This is giving me hope.

  20. Hi

    I am already taking Yasmin, high strength Vitamin B complex, Chromium and spriulina. Would you suggest I continue taking all these supplements in addition to the folic acid and inositol?
    I am keen to finally shift the excess weight(2stone).

    Suzie

  21. I have just read about the inositol and looked at the amazon site however you have mentioned to take it with folic acid would that be in form of tablets? I have nto actually taken any sort of supplements for my PCS and cant wait to start. Thank you for the information also I am not trying to conceive just manage my PCOS.

    1. Hi Nazia,

      Tablet form is fine. You can either get 400mcg and take 1 per day or 2mcg and take 2 per day. Supplements are key to managing your PCOS so I hope you see some good results from it.

      Tarryn

    2. Nazia are you from india?
      I am also serching Inositol in india.
      please let me know if you can help

  22. oops, and the myo-inositol is 2000mg… i guess i might have dyslexia in addition to PCOS! (haha) sorry for the string post! it wont happen again 🙂

  23. tarryn,
    i just got my pregnitude in the mail, and it says to take two packets a day. im not trying to conceive, i just want to have healthier organs. each packet comes with 200mg Myo-inositol / 200mg folic acid. would you suggest taking two packets a day, or just one? thanks!
    im excited a bout starting it!

    -sarah

    1. Hi Sarah,

      Most of the research has been done on 4mg per day so I would take 1 packet in the morning and 1 in the evening, for maximum results, even if you’re not trying to conceive.

      Tarryn

  24. Hello! your website is giving me a lot of hope. Thank you. I just ordered the Jarrow Formulas Inositol Powder and was wondering how much folic acid should be taken in addition with this? thanks so much Kristen

  25. I’ve been living with pcos since i was 13, im 19 now and going back and forth to the hospital having refferals has not helped me one bit. I was wondering where would I be able to get this Inositol? and what is the best one to get? as i have tried everything that the doctors have given me.

    This site has helped me alot xx

    1. Hi Priah,

      I’m so glad this site has helped – thanks for letting me know! I use Jarrow Powder Inositol which I ordered from Amazon. It costs about £20 but should last roughly three months. Also make sure that you take it with Folic Acid, even if you are not trying to conceive.

      Hope that helps!

      Tarryn

    1. Hi Blerta,

      I think it depends what results you’re looking for. Many lose weight soon after taking it and it should start to improve your glucose metabolism almost immediately. Hirsutism takes about 6 months to start seeing improvements.

      Hope that helps!

      Tarryn

  26. Hi just wanna ask my bottle of folic acid that I got says 800µg i have no idea how much that is and how much folic acid should i take with 4 g inositol thanks

    1. Hi Mary,

      The research was done on 4g Inositol with 400µg Folic acid. So you may want to take just 1 folic acid per day with 4g Inositol. Please remember that I’m not a doctor and a doctor would be able to confirm the correct doses.

      Tarryn

  27. Hi. Thanks for all ur help and support just wanted to ask about metformin and inositol. My concern is weight loss so would like to know if you have pcos would metformin be good or inositol to take for weight loss or are they the same if not what are the differences between them thank you very much

    1. HI Laila,

      Thanks for your question. Here is an article I recently came across: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20222840 The researchers concluded that Inositol was more effective than Metformin in restoring spontaneous ovulation. This is important because it means that hormone balance has been somewhat restored and I’m sure there was an improvement in other PCOS symptoms. One of the women who read this blog reported losing 25lb in 1 month by taking Inositol. So, to answer your question, Inositol has been shown to improve PCOS symptoms without many of the side effects of Metformin. Your doctor would be able to give you some more specifics and guide you as to what would work best for you, in light of your blood tests and medical history.

      I hope that helps!

      Tarryn

  28. Hi Tarryn,

    Can you suggest a brand of inositol to take. I was looking on iherb.com but there is a huge selection.

    Laura

    1. Hi Laura,

      I bought the Jarrow powder Inositol from Amazon. It seems the most cost effective and I got free delivery.

      Hope that helps!

      Tarryn

      1. I live in Ireland so i’m finding it hard to get. I would prefer to take it in tablet form if possible. Most seem to be available in 500mg though, is the daily recommended intake 4g?

        1. Hi Laura,

          The powder just dissolves in a glass of water and really doesn’t taste bad (a little like sugar water). You can take the tablets but to take 4g a day, you would need to take 8 capsules per day. I do found the powder less expensive to be honest.

          Tarryn

  29. Hi Guys I am new also and i am wondering if having the marina in for really bad symptoms with my periods will effect me taking the inositol?
    I am not looking to get pregnant just make my symptoms better. I have two children already and my symptoms got worse after my second baby. My weight is the biggest problem for me i just cant seem to loose it!! i would be grateful for any advice..

    1. Hi Edel,

      Thanks for the question. As far as I know there are few contra-indications for taking Inositol so it should be fine. It may well help you manage your general PCOS symptoms.

      Tarryn

  30. Hi Taryn

    I found your website over the weekend and find it so beneficial as the doctor doesn’t really give much info on pcos
    I was diagnosed with pcos in January and have impaired glucose levels
    The hospital prescribed me with the pill called dianette, I haven’t seen the benefits yet as I still have acne and a lot of facial hair but they’ve told me to persist.

    I was thrilled when I came across your website as it helps to know there are other things to try. After reading your inositol article I have been taking 2 650mg capsules a day
    I haven’t seen a difference yet but it’s only been 4 days, however I wanted to ask whether I should be taking folic acid as well to see the benefits?

    1. Hi Amy,

      Thanks for sharing some of your story and for your question.

      The first thing to note is that studies were done using 4g of inositol per day, plus folic acid, so you may want to consider increasing your dose. Also, research is still underway on the effect of using inositol on it’s own. All of the current research uses the combination of inositol and folic acid so it may be safer to take the folic acid anyway. If I come across any research that says otherwise, I’ll let you know!

      Tarryn

  31. Ok thanks Tarryn this info was very helpful!!! I will be sure to go out and get the other vitamins!!!!

  32. Hi Tarryn,
    Ok I have started taking Inositol a few weeks ago when I found your blog. But I have been really confused as to which form of inositol I should be taking to achieve a successful pregnancy, and how. I see that there’s a “Myo-Inositol” and a “D-Chiro-Inositol”. Do forgive me if I’m saying or spelling it wrong, but the form that I’m taking is only Inositol alone. So please tell me your opinion on what form and how I should take it regarding combining it with another supplement or what. I’m totally confused!!!!!!
    Thanks kindly,
    Dre Cluse

    1. Hi Dre,

      Inositol is often myo-inositol (with Inositol being it’s common name). D-chiro-inositol is another form of myo-inositol that the body can produce from myo-inositol. Research shows that both myo-inositol and D-chiro-inositol have similar effects on PCOS but D-chiro-inositol is taken at a lower dose to be effective. D-chiro does tend to be more expensive though.

      So to answer you question, the inositol that you have is myo-inositol and should be helpful in increasing your fertility. Make sure that you’re also taking Folic acid, Omega 3 and Vitamin D.

      Hope that clears up some of the confusion but let me know if you have any other questions!

      Tarryn

  33. Hi Tarryn,
    Thanks for this info. I’ve been taking 1500mg of metformin daily for the past two weeks and it cause me to have horrible headaches. I’m going to try the vitamins you’ve mentioned here. I was diagnosed with PCOS after I had my son 4 years ago. I always suspected that something was wrong but my doctors never bothered to test me,even though for 5 years prior to getting pregnant with my son I expressed my concerns. My biggist issue is weight loss, it all goes straight to my abdomen. Thank you again for being a voice for the rest of us.

    1. Hi LeKearnekea,

      Thanks so much for your comment and it is a real pleasure to be a voice of women with PCOS. I love connecting with women like you!

      How frustrating that you didn’t get the help that you needed and I’m sorry to hear about your Metformin side effects. I have heard great results from Inositol in particular so I hope that it works for you too!

      Tarryn

  34. Wow christina! Thanks so much for sharing such wonderful news! It is very encouraging.

  35. Hi!

    My husband & I have been trying to start our family since Aug of 2009 and in Nov of 2010 I was diagonsed with PCOS. I found your website a few weeks ago on Pinterest and found your article on Myo-inositol very interesting so I started doing some of my own research. I haven’t seen anything scary about it and it’s been getting some pretty great reviews. So I took the plunge and purchased the Pregnitude on Amazon.com and started it on March 1. I’m happy to report that it hasn’t even been 2 weeks and AF has arrived after a 5 month absence. I am very excited that it is acutally working and I haven’t been excited or hopeful about this area of life in a long time. Praying that in a few weeks I might actually see two little pink lines for the first time ever!! Thank you for all of your hard work & for sharing your story with us. It’s greatly appreciated!

    1. Hi Christina,

      Thank you so much for sharing your amazing story! I’m SO happy and excited for you that there is hope at the end of your tunnel. It is so encouraging to hear your story and it is a privilege for me to be a small part of that – thank you!

      I hope you get your amazing baby news soon and I can’t wait to hear it!

      Tarryn

  36. Hello,
    The amount recommended on the bottle to take is a 1/4 teaspoon. Is this the proper amount for people with PCOS? Should I be taking more? Thanks!

    1. Hi Jenna,

      The research was done on 4g per day. So, if you have the Jarrow Inositol powder, it should be 2g in the morning and 2g in the evening…

      Tarryn

      1. OK for those of us without a kitchen scale, can you weigh out 2g and tell us approx how many teaspoons or tablespoons that is? 🙂 I’ve ordered the Inositol and can’t wait to start it to see if it helps!!! Thank you for all of this information. 🙂

          1. Thanks so much for this answer – it helps a lot! I’ve purchased it and started taking it this morning. Do you think it matters how much water you take it with? And do I need to take the folic acid with it, or is it ok if it’s in my multi vitamin that I take separately?

  37. Your site is so good. I have not been diagnosed PCOS but I am writing to my doctor (as face-to-face she does not seem to listen) regarding PCOS because of the hair on my face increasing, acne etc etc… I have been using natural progesterone cream for over a year which has helped my moods somewhat but not other symptoms yet. Have you had any success with natural progesterone cream? I use serenity.

    Also do you experience thirst? I am thirsty a lot of the month and blood tests ruled out diabetes.

    Thanks in advance for your response, keep up the great work!

    1. Hi Kelly,

      Thanks so much for your comments and sharing your story.

      Doctors can be very frustrating and there’s often not enough knowledge of PCOS out there! A letter sounds good – just make sure that you get the service you need! If you are worried about PCOS, ask for blood tests and an ultrasound.

      I have not used progesterone cream myself but it is commonly used to treat PCOS. The theory is that the progesterone sends messages to the brain, causing it to release and inhibit other hormones that stimulate the ovaries so that ultimately there is a decrease in testosterone production by the ovaries. I think that it could be beneficial as part of your PCOS treatment but maybe you need to also make sure you’re eating well, taking supplements and exercising regularly.

      Funnily enough, I am often thirsty but never linked it to PCOS. I’ll do some research!

      Tarryn

      1. Thanks Tarryn, will do, I have had blood tests but they came back clear but I know that when women are still menstruating blood tests are not that conclusive. I am going to encourage my GP to do an ultrasound. The last time I saw her she basically said “you don’t need to worry whether you ovulating, will come to that bridge when your trying to conceive”. Hmpph! My response afterwards was I want to know before the event not after the event. I am 36 and have yet to meet my life partner (fortunately not overly desiring children at present – BUT who knows how I will feel in the future).

        Regarding progesterone, I will probably keep taking it, as it has helped, I have completely changed my diet to a no sugar/no refined flour diet and no coffee. I am yet to cut out dairy but going to consider that when I return from my week away. I am having almond milk at the moment which I love but do have soft cheese on ryvitas during the week. I am not sure on giving up butter, as I did think butter did not contain milk protein that causes the problems that is in milk and cheese etc.. but will think about that further.

        Supplements I am taking on mainly mult-vitamin and evening primrose oil. I am considering inositol after reading this and also trying to drink spearmint tea (yack!), I love herbal tea but mint tea is something that makes me feel sick but if it helps hersuitism that is something i am willing to try again.

        I walk around 4 times a week for at least 40 minutes, often an hour and do tai chi. But mainly I need to find a way to relax more as I have anxiety and this does not help any of this. I am investigating blood type diets too as I must say I relate more to my blood type and apparently type A+ are not good with dairy or meat sooo will see…

        Look forward to hearing if you find out anything regarding the thirst.

        Hugs x

        1. Hi Kelly & Tarryn! I’m new here, but am so thankful for the info you’ve provided Tarryn!!! I wanted to further comment about the diet about blood types. I did that for a bit & felt wonderful! A lot of what he said concerning the blood type & issues that I had were very accurate. For me, at least. I’m A neg. And what he recommends goes right along with the pcos diet (& info presented from Tarryn). It’s worth looking into. Take the best of both diets… although, I think you’ll find them similar already (esp for blood type A).

          1. Hi Vanessa,

            I’ve never considered the Blood Type Diet. I’ll look into it…

            Tarryn

  38. Tarryn,
    I am so happy I came across your website. I have been at a dead end with PCOS. I have been to Dr. To Dr. And all they want to do is to give me more meds. I told one dr. No more drugs!!!! I need help and the medicine is not working. I am going to look into inositol. I will keep you posted!!! Thank you, for making my day better! I see a light at the end of this very long tunnel 🙂

    1. Hi Kerri,

      Thanks so much for your comment and sharing your story!

      Well done on saying No to the drugs! Supplements, diet and lifestyle changes can be hugely effective in managing your PCOS.

      Let me know how you get on with Inositol!

      Tarryn

  39. Hi! I am trying to combat my growing, terrible symptoms of PCOS naturally. I am only 20 only wishing to manage my symptoms, not increase fertility. Is there any information on using this in correspondance to birth control?

    1. Hi Sarah,

      Thanks for your question.

      Birth control can help to regulate your cycle as well as manage your testosterone levels (some can make your symptoms worse so make sure your doctor knows you have PCOS). BCP does not, however, treat any underlying insulin issues. Recent research has shown that women who take BCP and Inositol have better insulin and testosterone levels with better overall improvement in their symptoms.

      So, yes! Inositol should help to improve your symptoms and I’d recommend taking it.

      Tarryn

  40. Do you know of any reason why I should try myo-insitol first versus d-chiro-insitol or the other way around?? Thanks

    1. Hi Jenna,

      You can find more info here: https://sites.google.com/site/miscarriageresearch/supplements-and-miscarriage/d-chiro-inositol but it seems as though both D-chiro-inositol and Myo-inositol have very similar effects but D-chiro-Inositol is more effective at lower doses (you need to take more myo-inositol to have the same effect). Inositol seems to be less expensive than D-chiro-inositol so I don’t mind taking a higher dose for it to have the same effect as it is more affordable at the higher dose.

      Tarryn

  41. I’m going to have to try this. I have a really hard time ovulating, losing weight, hirutism. The Dr always want me on BCP. I already take enough medication for another condition and would rather try this. Thanks

    1. Hi Maria,

      BCP really does seem to be the go-to treatment, especially when you’re not trying to conceive. But all it does is put a band aid on the problem. I really think Inositol is worth a shot!

      Good luck!

      Tarryn

      1. I’m assuming BCP mean birth control pills. If that’s correct, would I be able to stop taking them if i start on one of the inositol supplements you mentioned? Are there other things I should take as well? I’ve already started to eat better and I’m exercising more.

  42. I’ve never thought about the powder. I’ve been using Chiral Balance D-chiro-inositol. How is the Inositol different from that? How much of the powder do you use each day and how long does it last?

    1. Hi Andrea,

      D-chiro-inositol seems to be more expensive than Inositol but it also has some good research to back it’s effectiveness in PCOS. Myo-Inositol can be converted to D-chiro-inositol in the body (D-chiro-inositol is one of the 9 isomers along with myo-inositol). So, supplementing with either one should be effective in managing some of your PCOS symptoms.

      I take 4g of powder per day so my 227g tub of powder should last me just under 2 months.

      Tarryn

      1. I found the 1000mg caps on amazon for $36 for a 90day supply! Is there a particular brand anyone suggests?

  43. Ok great!! Once again thanks so much!!! This information is fantastic, but I’m going to do a little more research to see if it I’d ok to still take it after becoming pregnant,, maybe it might help reduce the chances of miscarriages in woman like myself whos had more than one, or even reduce the chances over all.

  44. Hello im new here thanks for this great information!! One question though,,can we buy this stuff at like a GNC store or do we get prescriptions for it??

    1. Hi Dre,

      Inositol is a supplement that it available OTC. You can get it off Amazon or the combination of Inositol and Folic Acid called Pregnitude.

      Tarryn

  45. Hi,

    Hope you are well. I was searching for Inositol and I came across a multi B vitamin capsules… So they contain folic acid and inositol an other things that fall under the B vitamin category… Would this be a sufficient amount or do we need to take a higher percentage of inositol for it to work…

    Many thanks

    Tess

    1. Hi Tess,

      Thanks for your question.

      The research was based on 4g of Inositol a day. It’s unlikely that a Vitamin B complex will give you that dose so you may need to find the Inositol powder and folic acid.

      Hope that helps!

      Tarryn

      1. Hi again

        Hmmm this vitamin tablet says it contains 10mg inositol, 400ug folic acid.. Etc etc … It’s from natures best.. Multi B complex… I have to look for tablet forms as powder makes me throw up .. So just thought I’d ask what you think 🙂

        Thankyou

        1. Hi Tess,

          If you work on the 4g used in the research that’s 40 tablets per day! Try this one: Solgar 500mg Inositol Caplets Also, the powder dissolves in water and hardly tastes like anything. If you do decide to go with the capsules, you’ll need to take at least 4 a day, up to 8 if you want to take 4g per day.

          Hope that helps!

          Tarryn

          1. Hi Tarryn,

            I got the Solgar 500 mg Inositol Caplets, and I just started taking them today. I just took 4 of them, this means I have to take 4 more tonight? Just want to make sure I have it right.

            I also bought Chromium picolinate 500 mcg, how many do I take on that? Bottle says one per day. Also going to take Vitamin D, Omega 3, and Vitamin B, along with Folic Acid.

            Does that sound good?

          2. Hi Kittykat,

            Sounds like you’re doing well! You’ve got all of the right supplements and combinations. I would take 4 of the Inositol caplets in the morning and 4 in the evening.

            Keep well,

            Tarryn

  46. Hi there is it a must to take the inositol with folic acid? I have had my babies & only took folic acid in the pregnancys.. I have PCOS plus alopcia totallis (overload with hair now none!) I’m taking omega3 fish oil & multi vit both one a day plus I’m on a clean diet most of the time!lol thanks a lot
    Helen

    1. Hi Helen,

      I think the studies suggest Inositol with Folic Acid in case of pregnancy. I don’t think you need to take Folic Acid for Inositol to be effective.

      Sounds like you’re doing all of the right things so I hope you start to see improvements soon!

      Tarryn

    2. Hi,

      I am a nutritionist, and yes Folic Acid is necessary, it allows vitamins and minerals to become digestible to the body. For instance, vitamins like Vit D and B12 cannot be digested unless taken with folic acid. Hope this helps.

  47. Would you happen to know if its safe to take while breast feeding?
    Thank you for the article it gives me hope that I can tackle this nasty nasty PCOS.
    Thank you 🙂

    1. Hi Stephanie,

      I don’t think enough research has been done on Inositol’s safety whilst breastfeeding. I wouldn’t take it until you’ve weaned off the breast, just to be on the safe side. You could also check with your Doctor.

      Hope that helps!

      Tarryn

  48. What would you say the differences are of this to metformin? Are there more benefits from taking this vs. metformin? They sound familiar at first read …. Are they able to be taken together?

    1. Thanks for the great question, Michelle. You are right in that they do seem quite similar and seem to act on the same insulin pathways. I would check with your doctor before taking Inositol and Metformin. None of the research studies suggest that they were used together and it may cause your blood sugar to drop too much.

      Tarryn

      1. Hey Tarryn!
        Congratulations on getting pregnant 🙂
        How long were you on the Inositol? And do you think it may have played a role in conceiving with your second :)?

        I haven’t menstruated in 9 years… When I first started, it was sort of irregular.. late by a few days, then months. My Dr. prescribed Tricyclen(Birth control pill,)And my periods did become regular… however, I never felt well on them. Once I stopped, the periods disappeared all together. I also gained 100 pounds and my allergies went on a rampage… (I never had allergies before). 9 years later I’m now married and considering starting a family. I fear that when I am ready… it may be too late and I may not ever be able to conceive.. I’ve heard things about cysts causing scar tissue on the ovaries making it more difficult to release follicles. Should I start fertility treatment now and not wait?

        I’m so glad I have found this group, I have been losing sleep for quite some time now.. Dr.s seem to know very little about this disorder…

        1. Hi Cochrt,

          Thanks for your comment and for sharing your story.

          I think the best thing to do at this point would be to seriously look at your diet, supplement and exercise regime. You can really improve your symptoms and fertility by making some changes in all of these areas. Recent research has also shown that diet and lifestyle changes can be more effective than medication anyway.

          Once you’ve done all of this for 3 months at least, you could look into fertility treatments. The diet, supplements and exercise will also stand you in good stead for when you do fall pregnant and you may well respond better to the treatment than if you dived right in first.

          I hope that helps!

          Tarryn

      2. I am taking both and everything is fine. I have lost quite a bit of weight since taking both rather than just metformin. I cant get the powder here so am taking capsules.

    2. Hello All, This is my first ever time to reach out. I have finally given up on hiding that I have PCOS. I am almost thirty and have no idea what else to do. I dont take prescritption medicine I try doing everything naturally. And I need all the help I can get my husband and I have been trying to get pregnant but obviously no luck since Ive never done anything to help it all i wanted to do was ignore it. Any Suggustion Advise ? Thank you so much ! Does this website also have an I phone App?

    3. I have just ordered Inositol from Amazon, not started the metformin yet but am due to, I haven’t spoken to my consultant about taking Inositol, is this safe to use? The benefits sound good!

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