A component of PCOS that can significantly contribute to the physical and biochemical manifestations of the disease – is an underlying insulin resistance
Insulin resistance is when your body is producing insulin, but the insulin receptors are not responding to the current concentrations of insulin in the system, in turn your body ramps up insulin production to make MORE insulin to ensure the receptors respond. Elevated insulin levels can contribute to abdominal adiposity, development of cardiovascular disease as well as worsening already imbalanced hormones
Metformin is the best studied and commonly prescribed medication to combat insulin resistance, but today I want to shine a light on inositol – another potential treatment option !
Inositol works similarly to a B vitamin in the body (co-factor to enzymes + reactions) and at the level of the insulin receptor inositol can improve insulin sensitivity. D-chiro inositol has been shown to work more in the periphery and Myo inositol works more specific to PCOS at the level of the ovary to improve insulin function. This is crucial for adequate FSH signaling at the ovary, as well as estrogen production! Studies have found that inositol can be a safe and effective alternative when working with insulin resistance in PCOS.
This is NOT a blanket statement that everyone with PCOS should start taking inositol – some cases do not have insulin resistance. Please work with your PCOS informed health care provider for a treatment option that is going to work best for you and is specific to your case – Check out my post “The many faces of PCOS” to try and figure out what category you may fall under!