Inositol HUH?We talk a lot about prenatals and Folate at Pink Stork, but when digging into infertility, you have to talk about Inositol. You’re now wondering, “What is it?” Why does it have such a weird name? Have other women seen benefits from it? We can’t answer the name part, but here are some of the biggest things about Inositol.
What is Inositol?Inositol is a naturally occurring substance with antioxidant properties. It’s part of the vitamin-B complex family. While not a vitamin itself, Inositol is used to treat a wide range of conditions like metabolic and mood disorders. Inositol is naturally occurring in some fiber-rich foods and maybe already part of your diet.
Some recent studies on Inositol have shown compelling benefits for women struggling with PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome). Some fertility doctors may prescribe Inositol for IVF (in vitro fertilization) or ovulation.
We’ve talked about Inositol as a catch-all term so far, but there are nine forms of Inositol. The two biggest are Myo-Inositol and D-Chiro-Inositol when it comes to fertility.
How does Inositol support a woman’s well-being?Myo-Inositol and D-Chiro-Inositol both help balance the hormones responsible for producing androgens (male sex hormones). Together Myo-Inositol and D-Chiro-Inositol work to help with blood glucose control, reproductive support, ovarian support, hormone support, and aiding in IVF outcomes.
Myo-Inositol has been shown to promote female fertility through supporting hormone balance and ovarian functions. We know you’ve been waiting to hear this part.
D-Chiro-Inositol on the other hand supports metabolic health in women. It plays an important role in cell growth, blood sugar levels, and blood pressure.
Most over-the-counter supplements will have both in a 40:1 blend. For an even more powerful punch, you want to look at a 3:6:1 blend. 3:6:1 blend of Myo-Inositol + D-Chiro-Inositol has been found to be more effective in increasing pregnancy rates in clinical studies.
Inositol improves insulin sensitivityIf you’ve known someone to suffer from PCOS, you know improving insulin sensitivity (or insulin resistance) is incredibly important. By simply improving their insulin sensitivity, women with PCOS can reduce or eliminate some of the worst symptoms. Many of these symptoms include weight gain, infertility, or acne. We could do without any of them, so Inositol is sounding pretty appealing.
Myo-inositol and D-Chiro-Inositol both have positive effects on insulin sensitivity and as a result, have shown improvements in several hormone-related biomarkers. Biomarkers are used to measure how your body responds to treatments.
PCOS symptoms can be tough for any woman. New ways of controlling symptoms have significantly improved in recent years, with some women following targeted diets and lifestyle programs. Many programs will have specific nutrients and botanicals to aid in their specific journey.
Is Inositol right for you?Inositol can help with infertility, metabolic syndrome, gestational diabetes, depression, and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). They’re not for everyone, but we’ve found many women swear by them. We always recommend checking with your care provider before beginning any new supplement or wellness routine.
Why do women use Folate with Inositol?Some pregnant women will be prescribed Inositol combined with Folate during their pregnancy.
The goal of using them together is to help prevent a woman from developing diabetes during her pregnancy. When the combination of Folate and Inositol are taken together, they encourage improvements in insulin sensitivity and increase the effects of insulin. When it comes to pregnacy, it’s all about getting ahead and preventing them altogether. The combo supports regulating glucose homeostasis also. They’re a great duo but make sure you ask your care provider if they’re right for your situation.
Some women may need supplementation if they suffer from PCOS, as many will have an Inositol deficiency. The good news is that when Inositol and Folic Acid are taken together, you may see decreases in inflammation and a regularization of the ovulation process!
Gestational diabetes and InositolDid you know that upwards of 14 percent of women are affected by gestational diabetes? Gestational diabetes occurs due to glucose intolerance, which is usually detected early in a pregnancy. A woman’s insulin receptors can change during pregnancy due to the placental lactogen hormone produced by the fetus. Myo-Inositol and D-Chiro-Inositol can combat this by acting similar to insulin and helping regulate glucose homeostasis.
How much Inositol do you need?There is no standardized recommended daily amount for Inositol.
For our 40:1 blend, we recommend taking 3 small capsules per day.
For our 3:6:1 blend, we recommend taking 2 small capsules per day.
Another study showed 4,000 mg/day improved fertilization rates and improved embryo quality. While more studies are showing the benefits of Inositol use all the time, work with your care provider to determine the right supplementation routine for your specific situation. Thousands of women have had success with our 40:1 and 3.6:1 blends.
How long does inositol take to help with infertility?We wish we had a magic 8-ball, but every woman is different. Studies have shown results in 3 to 4 months. Your journey is unique to you—so results can differ.
Inositol rich foodsSupplements are great, but there are plenty of fiber-rich foods that can be integrated into your diet. For those looking to add naturally occurring Inositol into their routine, here are some of the best foods.
- Cantaloupe: A great source of inositol, it also packs the perk of providing 72 percent of the daily value for vitamin C per cup. All fruits (except lemons) are great sources of Inositol.
- Beans: Beans are one of the best foods high in D-Chiro-Inositol. You can get up to 9.6 grams of heart-healthy fiber with just ½ cup cooked.
- Bananas: Provides 10 percent of the daily value for potassium.
- Cabbage: Make sure it’s fresh to really get the full benefits of cabbage. Just one cup of cabbage can provide 56 percent of your DV for Vitamin K. Vitamin K is important for blood clotting and healthy bones.
- Liver: It’s not everyone’s favorite food for dinner, but it’s a great source of inositol. Liver is great for vitamin B12 with 3,035 percent of the DV per 3 ounces cooked.
- Nuts: Nuts have high Inositol and are all-around delicious. They’re a great handheld snack that you can take everywhere. Low intake of nuts and seeds was associated with 8.5 percent of adult diet-related deaths like heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
- Wheat Bran: Throw some wheat bran on top of your favorite cereal and enjoy the extra fiber for the day.
- Brown Rice: Brown Rice provides up to 43 percent of the daily value (DV) for manganese, which helps the body form connective tissue, blood-clotting factors, and sex hormones. Oh yeah, it’s a great source of Inositol.
- Peas: Where’s the love for peas? They pack 4.3 grams of protein and 4.4 grams of fiber per half of a cup cooked.
If you have any questions, as always, reach out to our Customer Obsession Team.