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Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is the most prevalent reproductive problem in young girls and women. Women with polycystic ovarian syndrome have:

  • Insulin resistance, which in turn leads to weight gain, blood sugar problems, high triglycerides and high androgens;
  • High blood sugar level (leading to high insulin, which leads to high androgens. High androgens lead to excess hair, weight problems, acne, suppression of ovarian function, leading to anovulation
  • High triglycerides which lead to heart disease;
  • Low progesterone levels (as ovulation does not take place, so only half the cycle is being completed);
  • High levels of 5-alpha reductase (this converts oestrogen to androgens. Progesterone inhibits 5 alpha reductase).

If insulin resistance is reversed, insulin levels drop, this in turn lowers androgen levels, which in turn prevents the suppression of ovarian function, allowing the ovaries to start functioning normally.

The common treatment for PCOS is the contraceptive Pill (to prevent ovulation) and Metformin (a diabetic drug to bring down sugar levels).
The Pill contains synthetic progesterone and oestrogen, which stop ovulation, but also reduce the level of natural progesterone. Synthetic progesterone or ‘progestins’ increase insulin resistance.

It is crucial that the insulin resistance is reversed before ovarian function returns to normal.

Support for PCOS:

  • Reduce insulin levels – eat organic protein (with no growth hormones), avoid all starchy carbs, including fruit, eating only the non-starchy leaves, shoots, sprouts etc
  • Reduce androgen levels – use progesterone and avoid all food which converts to glucose, to reduce insulin, which causes androgens to rise
  • Use between 200-250mg/day of progesterone cream, this helps stabilise blood sugar and suppresses androgen production. It also helps to correct ovarian malfunction
  • The B vitamin inositol is essential for the reversal of insulin resistance
  • The amino acid L-glutamine is very helpful. It’s best dissolved in water and drunk throughout the day. The brain can use it in place of glucose for energy, so it stops all binging, tiredness, cravings for sugary foods and alcohol, it heals the lining of the gut, it boosts the immune system and is the most abundant amino acid in the muscles, so helping with muscle weakness
  • Have a homocysteine test, if It’s high, take:
    • 150mg B2-riboflavin
    • 75mg B6-pyrodoxine
    • 1000mcg B12-cyanocobalamin
    • 1200mcg Folic acid
    • 3000mg TMG-tri-methyl glycine (anhydrous)
    • 20mg Zinc

As homocysteine could be a contributing factor to polycystic ovarian syndrome, a blood test should be carried out. If the results are higher than 6 then it is essential to take the following nutrients:

  • 150mg B2-riboflavin
  • 75mg B6-pyrodoxine
  • 1000mg B12-cyanocobalamin
  • 1200mcg folic acid
  • 3000mg TMG-tri-methyl glycine (anhydrous)
  • 30mg zinc

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The link between progesterone and the menopause is highlighted by the fact that women in industrialised countries have a hard time with menopausal symptoms compared to women in rural societies. Dr. P. Ellison of Harvard University studied oestrogen levels in various ecological and cultural populations and found that oestrogen levels in western women are abnormally high. This can be due to a number of factors:

  • the food consumed (particularly animals fed oestrogen to fatten them)
  • the crops sprayed with pesticides (most of which are oestrogenic)
  • the Pill and HRT
  • drinking recycled water which has not had the oestrogen removed
  • using cosmetics which are made with liquid paraffin and oestrogenic antioxidants.

An understanding of the effects of a lack of progesterone is vital to understanding that progesterone can play an enormously beneficial role in helping to go through menopause without too many adverse affects. By naturally opposing the action of oestrogen, the symptoms of oestrogen dominance are lessened and in some cases eliminated. The easiest method to apply progesterone is in a cream form.

New research conducted by Wallace and Kelsey published in “Human Reproduction”, indicates that it might be possible to show the approach of menopause by a scan of the ovaries. Currently blood hormone levels are used to try to determine this, but these are notoriously inaccurate as it is common practice to only check oestrogen levels, not progesterone. The patient generally needs to specifically request this despite the fact that progesterone and menopause are inextricably connected. As the symptoms of menopause are caused by a lack of progesterone and too much oestrogen, the standard ‘oestrogen only’ test is of little help.

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