PCOS is the main cause of infertility due to metabolic, hormonal and ovarian dysfunctions. Women affected by PCOS often suffer of insulin resistance and of a compensatory hyperinsulinemia. These conditions put the patient at risk of developing several metabolic disorders.
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome may be one of the most complex female health issues of our time. It is the most common endocrine disorder in women of reproductive age. PCOS is accompanied by a variety of different health issues, many of which directly impact fertility. Classic PCOS presents with obesity, polycystic ovaries (multiple ovarian cysts that look like a strand of pearls), elevated levels of androgens and absent or irregular menstrual cycles. Not all women who will go on to be diagnosed with PCOS will have these issues though.
Causes of PCOS: Poor nutrition often plays a major role, as does exposure to certain chemicals. Age plays less of a role before menopause. Many women turn to a low-fat, high fiber diet in an attempt to increase health and lose weight. Weight loss has been shown to increase fertility, but losing weight in this way is rarely effective for increasing fertility because it deprives the body of the necessary proteins and fats necessary for hormone production.
Several links including genes, possible abnormal fetal development, insulin resistance and inflammatory response are contributing to the cause. We know that insulin resistance plays a key role in PCOS, but what leads to the development of this has not been pinned down. PCOS is also negatively affected by diet, lifestyle and exposure to certain environmental toxins. PCOS directly impacts fertility, but has serious health implications as well, especially if left untreated.
Genetic Predisposition and Abnormal Fetal Development:
Women whose mothers, sisters or grandmothers had PCOS are at a higher risk for developing PCOS. Research suggests that exposure to excessive amounts of male hormones (androgens) by the developing fetus may alter proper gene expression. This means that the affected genes will not function correctly later in life, which may cause PCOS during the reproductive years of a woman's life.
Insulin is a hormone produced in the pancreas and is responsible for signaling cells in the body to function correctly, most importantly to convert glucose to energy and to control their growth. It also plays a key role in the metabolism of carbohydrates, lipids and proteins. Insulin resistance happens when the body's cells become resistant to the effects of insulin. When this happens, higher levels of insulin are needed so that insulin can have the proper effects. At this point, the pancreas must overcompensate, working harder and harder to produce more insulin.
It has also been found that women with PCOS have low-grade inflammation, which may be a cause for insulin resistance. White blood cells produce substances to fight infection, this is known as inflammatory response.
PCOS and Insulin Resistance:
Approximately 10% of women of reproductive age have PCOS, an endocrine disorder characterized by hormonal imbalance and often anovulation. Women with PCOS have ovaries that contain many small follicles, called cysts, which appear like a string of pearls on an ultrasound scan. A woman with PCOS does not experience the typical hormonal surge that would induce ovulation; therefore these follicles don't grow or ovulate normally and can contribute to the overproduction of the hormone testosterone.
Myo-inositol (MI) and D-chiro inositol (DCI) glycans administration has been reported to exert beneficial effects at metabolic, hormonal and ovarian level. Beside these common features, MI and DCI are indeed different molecules: they belong to two different signal cascades and regulate different biological processes.
In a study, the D-Chiro-inositol group had an improvement in insulin resistance and a 55 % reduction in testosterone levels compared to the placebo group. Significantly more women ovulated in the Chiro inositol group than in the placebo group (86% vs. 27%). D-Chiro-Inositol helps to improve insulin sensitivity, lower free and total testosterone, lower blood pressure, and increase the frequency of ovulation.
Grape seed Extract in this combination acts as an antioxidant and improves insulin sensitivity and restore redox balance in patients with PCOS.
Berberine lowers insulin and glucose level, and regulates insulin receptors and also stimulates the uptake of glucose into cells.
L-Methylfolate helps control homocysteine levels. Homocysteine is an undesirable substance in the body that is often elevated in women with PCOS.
Chromium, a trace mineral, enhances the action of insulin.
This formula also contains Vitamin D3. Vitamin D3 deficiency appears to occur in women with PCOS and may contribute to some of the biochemical abnormalities seen in this condition. Functions of Vitamin D3 include improved insulin sensitivity, better bone health, reduction of inflammation, and longer lifespan.
So, the rational use of nutritional supplements, combined with a healthy diet, will contribute substantially to health promotion and work in balance and synergism on protection and integration of the physiological functions of the body.
Indications and Usage:
This formula is useful in:
- PCOS (Polycystic ovary syndrome)
- Improves pregnancy rate and lower cancellation rate in women with PCOS
- Restores normal ovulatory activity and fertility in women with PCOS
- Increases SHBG (sex hormone binding globulin) – Deals with any free testosterone in our blood stream
- Increases progesterone
- Lowers testosterone levels
- Improves insulin sensitivity
- Decreases luteinizing hormone
- Induces weight loss
- Help a fat-clogged liver to unclog itself (Fat clogged livers are a problem for roughly 50% of women with PCOS)
- Relieves depression and mood disorders
- Improves appetite
Myo-Inositol and D-Chiro Inositol:
This combination contains one of the most widely studied dietary supplements in population is inositol. And with good reason: both Myo (MYO) and D-Chiro-inositol (DCI) inositol types have been shown to improve many of the metabolic and reproductive aspects of PCOS. These benefits include improvements to cholesterol, insulin, androgens and weight. Women who take inositol report fewer cravings. Best of all, MYO has been shown to boost fertility by improving egg quality and restoring menstrual regularity as well as reduce the risk for gestational diabetes. While both MYO and DCI types offer many benefits to women with PCOS, new research now shows that it's the combination of the two types, in the body's natural ratio that shows the most benefit.
Inositol is a term used to refer to a group naturally occurring Carbohydrate compounds. Inositol plays a critical role in insulin signaling. Conditions such as hyperglycemia and diabetes are associated with disrupted insulin signaling leading to insulin resistance. Thus results in infertility. INOSITOL plays a key role in follicular development, improves oocyte (egg) quality and helps in the restoration of ovulation in women.
Main features of Myo & Chiro Inositol for PCOS:
- Improves the way the body use insulin
- Reduces cravings
- Decreases androgens
- Regulates menstrual cycle
- Improves ovarian function
- Supports normal lipid levels
- Promotes egg quality
- Reduces risk of gestational diabetes
Berberine (as Berberine HCl):
Berberine is the active constituent of a number of different traditional herbal medicines including the western herb Goldenseal and the Chinese herb Phellodendron. Berberine is an alkaloid compound with a rich yellow color. Berberine exhibits anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and androgen-inhibiting properties.Berberine is an isoquinoline derivative alkaloid extracted from Coptis chinensis (goldenthread), Berberis aquifolium (Oregon grape), and Hydrastis canadensis (goldenseal), among other plants.
How does Berberine Help in PCOS:
Berberine lowers insulin and glucose in a way similar to the conventional medicine metformin. It up-regulates insulin receptors, and stimulates the uptake of glucose into cells. Berberine also blocks testosterone production by ovarian cells, and has a beneficial effect on gut microbes. Berberine has some nice side benefits. It reduces anxiety, and is excellent treatment for acne. A recent study found that berberine improved acne by 45% after just 4 weeks of treatment.
Berberine may regulate the functions of body by targeting several mechanisms and organs, therefore alleviating metabolic disorders (obesity, hypertension, and dyslipidemia) by getting to the root causes. Much of berberine's efficacy is due to its powerful anti-inflammatory, antibiotic and androgen-inhibiting functions.
Berberine Releives PCOS, just as effective as Metformin:
Berberine may prove a viable alternative to metformin in optimizing the health outcomes of women with PCOS. In a study at Herbin Medical University in China, of 109 women with PCOS were given berberine. The researchers discovered that it was as effective as the drug Metformin for improvement of insulin sensitivity, weight loss, and reduction of testosterone and blood sugar levels.
Berberine appears to be a very promising nutritional supplement for women suffering from PCOS and can relieve symptoms as well as or better than - Metformin, without the side effects of Metformin.
However, Berberine is superior to Metformin in several aspects:
- Reduction of total cholesterol and "bad" LDL cholesterol
- Increasing "good" HDL cholesterol
- Shrinking waist circumstances
- Increasing beneficial sex hormones binding globulin (SBHG). SBHG is very important for properly managing your hormones
- Reduction of triglycerides, a fat found in the blood
Functions of Berberine:
Berberine targets a very basic regulator of metabolism called AMPK-activated protein kinase (AMPK).
- Stimulates the uptake of glucose into the cells
- Improves insulin sensitivity
- Reduces glucose production in the liver
- Slows the release of free fatty acids, which lowers lipid levels and prevents harmful fat deposition
- Boosts fat burning in the mitochondria
- Stimulates the release of nitric oxide (NO), a signaling molecule that relaxes the arteries, increases blood flow and lowers blood pressure, and protects against atherosclerosis
- Inhibition of several inflammatory pathways involved in PCOS pathology, including TNF alpha interlukin – 6 and COX2. Most women with PCOS have some degree of chronic inflammation, which causes symptoms to be more severe
- Antioxidant and protection from DNA damage
- Helps to repair damage to the intestinal wall. A healthy intestinal barrier is critical for good health, including better control of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
Grape Seed Extract: Grapefruit Seed Extract (GSE) is a substance derived from the seeds, membranes, and the pulp of grapefruit. Used as a broad-spectrum, non-toxic, antimicrobial product, it is known to be highly effective for fighting infection and promoting health. GSE is used as a purifier, antiseptic, and preservative. The seed of the grape is its most nutritious part which helps boost fertility. Grape seed is also a great antioxidant and caters to overall health. Antioxidants are one of the most important components to having healthy fertility. Antioxidant supplementation has been shown to improve insulin sensitivity and restore redox balance in patients with PCOS.
Grape seed extracts are used for treating a host of bacterial and fungal infections of the body and boost the immunity; it can also be used for protecting the sperm from infections and allergies of the body and safety transferring it into the womb after fertilization. It has anti – inflammatory affects; supports blood vessel structure; may improve glucose intolerance.
Grape seed extract is rich in flavonoids, phytochemicals that have antioxidant properties. Proflavanol is one of those options. It is a plant derived antioxidant combined with extracts from grape seeds. It actually helps your body remove waste (free radicals) produced by cells when they use oxygen. Damage caused by poor diet, stress, and excessive hormones is mitigated. Proflavanol's greatest asset to fertility is its ability to reduce inflammation and help bring the body into balance.
In women, Proflavanol increases blood circulation to the pelvic area, decreases inflammation, and reduces the impact of stress on the body. The overall effect of these changes is an enhanced uterine environment that is better prepared for implantation and a healthy pregnancy.
Chromium is an essential trace mineral that is needed for insulin activity in carbohydrate, fat and protein metabolism. Optimal levels may reduce insulin resistance, improve blood sugar control, and may help to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and type-2 diabetes. Supplementation may also help to reduce triglycerides and total cholesterol while improving HDL "good" cholesterol.
In a small study, six women with PCOS took chromium picolinate for a period, at which time their glucose disposal (insulin sensitivity) had improved by an average of 35%, and their baseline insulin levels fell by 22%. Chromium improves the effectiveness of insulin. Chromium may improve blood sugar control.
L-Methylfolate, the active form of folic acid is helpful in regulating homocysteine levels, promoting ovarian normality and smooth functioning. It is required for DNA synthesis and optimal neurological function. It works in tandem with vitamin B12. Folic acid may be helpful in reducing homocysteine, which is a metabolic byproduct that is too high in some PCOS women.
As women with PCOS, having increased risk for miscarriage and infertility – and folate is one of the most important nutrients involved in reproductive health.
Besides possibly reducing infertility associated with PCOS, folic acid may also improve pregnancy outcomes with PCOS. As with all pregnant women, pregnant women with PCOS need to get sufficient folic acid to prevent neural tube defects. Both low folic acid levels and PCOS are linked to miscarriage; pregnant women with PCOS may thus help reduce their risk of miscarrying by taking folic acid.
Vitamin D3 is one form of vitamin D, a fat-soluble vitamin whose main role in your body is to promote the absorption of calcium in the intestinal tract. Vitamin D also assists with cell growth, inflammation reduction, neuromuscular function and immunity. Since your body needs vitamin D to absorb calcium, a vitamin D deficiency typically results in weakened bones, called rickets in children and osteomalacia in adults.
This Vitamin has also been found to be involved in follicle egg maturation and development. Vitamin D receptors have now been identified in almost every tissue and cell in the human body and the vitamin has been found to be involved in follicle egg maturation and development. In a small trial study of 13 women with PCOS who were deficient in Vitamin D, normal menstrual cycles resumed within 2 months in 7 of the 9 women who had irregular menstrual cycles when given Vitamin D repletion with calcium therapy. Two women even established pregnancies. The study suggests that abnormalities in calcium balance may be responsible, in part, for the arrested follicular development in women with PCOS and may even contribute to the pathogenesis of the syndrome.
Low Vitamin D levels were found to be associated with lower rates of follicle development and pregnancy after stimulation with clomifene in women with PCOS. Vitamin D also plays a key role in glucose regulation, notably in decreasing insulin resistance. Low levels of vitamin D have been negatively correlated with the incidence of type-1 and type-2 diabetes.
Side Effects :
The product is possible safe for most women. There is no disadvantage associated with the product if taken under the recommended usage or as directed by dietician.
Special Precautions & Warnings (During Pregnancy and Breast-Feeding mothers):
Store in a cool, dry & dark place. Protected from direct sunlight.