Resveratrol & PCOS

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Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is the most common hormonal health problem faced by women of reproductive age. According to a study from the University of California at San Diego, resveratrol supplements might help. In this randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 30 women with PCOS were given either placebos or 1,500 milligrams resveratrol. After three months, the women taking resveratrol showed significant decreases in testosterone and circulating insulin and a 66% increase in the Insulin Sensitivity Index. The researchers conclude that
“…resveratrol significantly reduced ovarian and adrenal androgens…in part to an improvement of insulin sensitivity and a decline in insulin levels.”

In Perspective: Most women with PCOS develop small cysts in their ovaries, which alter hormone production. Under normal conditions, the ovaries make small amounts of androgens, such as testosterone. In PCOS, this production increases. As a result, menstruation and fertility are affected and the woman may develop acne, facial hair, and show abnormalities in handling insulin. While regular exercise, a healthy diet, and maintaining a healthy weight are at the front line of treatment, this study suggests that resveratrol supplementation should be added to that program.

Elizabeth Somer, M.A.,R.D.

Banaszewska B, Wrotynska-Barcznska J, Spacznski R, et al: Effects of resveratrol on polycystic ovary syndrome. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism 2016; October 18th.

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