Polycystic ovarian syndrome is a complicated endocrine disorder affecting many different areas of a sufferer’s body and life. Reliable information can be hard to come by and symptoms such as infertility, excess facial and body hair, acne, fatigue and excess weight can leave women with PCOS feeling inadequate, demoralised and depressed with life.
There are many simple steps that women with PCOS can incorporate into their lives to gain control over PCOS and put them on the path to better health. In this series of articles, we will explore 20 simple and easy steps that can make a difference to PCOS.
Step # 15
Work with a qualified professional to choose a selection of herbs and nutrients which support healthy carbohydrate metabolism.
Alpha-lipoic acid has been found to greatly increase insulin sensitivity in addition to being an incredible antioxidant and having the ability to help the body ‘recycle’ other antioxidants. Unusually, it is both fat and water soluble, meaning it is capable of passing into any body tissues including crossing the blood-brain barrier.
Carnitine has been shown to increase glucose uptake by cells, improve glucose storage, decrease serum insulin levels and improve insulin sensitivity in several studies. It is also commonly used as an aid to weight loss.
Vitamin C has been found to reduce blood sugar levels as well as having protective effects on the kidneys, eyes and nervous system. In people with high blood sugar, it has been shown to prevent accumulation of a kind of sugar known as sorbitol that can lead to serious complications with these organs. Diabetics accumulate high levels of sorbitol, which results in the cells leaking important molecules including nutrients. Researchers have found vitamin C to be superior in normalizing sorbitol levels to drugs designed for the same purpose.
Vitamin E has been shown to reduce insulin resistance as well as protecting cells against the damage caused by high blood sugar levels. Studies have shown that a dose of between 400 – 800 i.u. depending upon the weight of the subject is effective for this purpose.
B-vitamin group nutrients are all vitally important for energy regulation and frequently at less than optimal levels in women with PCOS, particularly if they have taken the drug metformin.
Co-enzyme Q10 is a very powerful antioxidant which may improve pancreatic beta-cell function and enhance insulin sensitivity.
Next article in series: 20 simple steps you can take to control polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) #16
To read more articles by Anne Seccombe click on the links for Health, PCOS or Low Carbohydrate Lifestyles.
You can also find more information on PCOS at My PCOS Info.
This article was originally published at My PCOS Info – News & Research. Further references and links to the studies mentioned can be found there.
(C) Copyright 2012 Anne Seccombe. This material may not be published, rewritten or redistributed without the express permission of the author. All rights reserved.