Inositol Reduces the Risk of Gestational Diabetes in PCOS Women

Women who have PCOS tend to have pregnancy complications. One of those complications is a condition called "gestational diabetes". This condition is when your blood sugar gets too high during pregnancy, most likely due to insulin hormone dysfunction or poor diet. You do not have to be diagnosed as a diabetic in order to have gestational diabetes. There are no typical, obvious symptoms for this disorder except for high blood sugar.

Untreated gestational diabetes may cause problems for your unborn baby, such as abnormal birth weight, blood sugar abnormalities, and possibly a higher risk of developing diabetes later in life.

It's treated with diet, exercise and medications. Is there anything else you could do?

The University of Messina recently published a 3-year study of women with PCOS who became pregnant. One group (44 women) took metformin until the pregnancy occurred. The other group (54 women) took the B-vitamin inositol during their entire pregnancy.

The metformin group was found to have more than twice the risk of developing gestational diabetes compared to the inositol group. In other words, taking inositol cut the risk of gestational diabetes in half compared to not taking inositol.

We've spoken for years about the benefits of inositol and its cousin, d-pinitol. This is an additional piece of evidence that inositol supplementation should be considered if you have polycystic ovary syndrome, whether you are pregnant or not. It is safe and has no drug-like side effects.

Source: D'Anna R et al, Myo-inositol may prevent gestational diabetes in PCOS women, Gynecol Endocrinol, 2012 Jun; 28(6):440-2.

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