Luke Stanaway

Registered Nutritionist

The Top 9 Supplements For PCOS 

The Top 9 Supplements For PCOS 

The Top 9 Supplements For PCOS 

Key Takeways

  • Inositols, which exist naturally in some foods, can lower increased insulin levels and improve blood sugar levels.

  • In women with PCOS, vitamin D supplementation can help regulate menstruation, boost fertility and pregnancy rates, and improve mood.

  • B complex vitamins, such as B12 and folate, help with insulin resistance, enhance mood management, and are especially crucial for women who use Metformin, which can deplete B12 levels in the body.

  • Berberine, an alkaloid derived from herbs, has been shown to reduce insulin resistance, enhance weight loss, and increase fertility in women with PCOS.

  • Fish oil supplements are a strong source of Omega-3s, which have anti-inflammatory properties and can aid in the treatment of inflammatory and autoimmune illnesses. Natural sources of Omega-3 fatty acids include fish, nuts, and plant oils.

  • Magnesium: People with PCOS are more likely than the general population to be deficient in magnesium. Magnesium supplements and magnesium-rich foods such as spinach, cashews, almonds, pumpkin seeds, and whole grains can assist to increase magnesium levels.

  • Zinc deficiency is frequent in PCOS women and can lead to insulin resistance and excessive cholesterol. Zinc supplementation has been demonstrated to help with insulin resistance, hormone imbalances, ovulation, acne, hair growth, weight loss, and hair loss.

  • N-Acetyl-Cysteine (NAC), aids in the production of antioxidants in the body and has been demonstrated to enhance insulin resistance, menstrual regularity, egg quality, and miscarriage rates in women with PCOS.

  • Coenzyme Q10 can aid in the treatment of age-related infertility and increase ovarian responsiveness in women prior to IVF therapy. It has also been discovered to have a positive effect on insulin and testosterone levels in PCOS patients.

Managing PCOS 

Managing PCOS effectively necessitates treating insulin resistance in the cells. To address this issue, many women with PCOS are administered metformin, a diabetic medication that has been demonstrated to be useful in alleviating some of the symptoms. Some women, however, are sensitive to the medication's gastrointestinal adverse effects. In light of this, we've developed a list of the top 5 supplements for women with PCOS that can help with insulin, metabolism, and hormones. 

Before getting into the best supplements for PCOS management, it is critical to understand the significance of obtaining safe and high-quality supplements that are appropriate for your body. This means choosing supplements that have been certified by the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) and the US Pharmacopeial Convention (USP). The reason for this is that the Food and Drug Administration in the United States does not currently test or approve dietary supplements before they are marketed. By selecting supplements that have been authorised by the NSF and USP, you can be confident that the goods you buy fulfil the exacting criteria and objective metrics required for approval by these organisations. 

  1. Inositols 

Inositols, which occur naturally in foods such as fruits, beans, nuts, animal products, and cereals, are a form of carbocyclic sugar that should be combined in a 40:1 ratio. These substances have antioxidant effects. It is worth noting that inositol was previously categorised as a vitamin. This has changed because most people create plenty of it naturally. Individuals with PCOS, on the other hand, do not, and as a result, they may require supplementation. 

As previously stated, PCOS is a metabolic disorder characterised by inflammation, insulin resistance, and/or elevated androgen levels. Inositol contributes to insulin regulation via a complex collection of processes that influence metabolism and important reproductive pathways. 

According to research, inositols help reduce elevated insulin levels and improve blood sugar levels in women with PCOS. A meta-analysis of research on the effects of myo- and d-chiro inositols on women with PCOS indicated that myo-inositol can lower total testosterone levels, and the good effects of inositols on androgen profiles and acne may take six months or more to see. 

  1. Vitamin D 

Vitamin D is a vital mineral that around 27% of New Zealanders are lacking in, and women with PCOS are no exception. Interestingly, studies have shown that taking vitamin D supplements for three months helps enhance menstruation regularity in individuals with PCOS. Furthermore, vitamin D intake has been demonstrated to increase fertility and pregnancy rates during assisted reproduction therapy, making it a crucial supplement for women who are having difficulty conceiving. Furthermore, vitamin D supplementation has been associated to improved mood and a lower incidence of depression in both PCOS and non-PCOS women. 

  1. B Complex Vitamins 

The B Complex vitamins, which include B12 and folate, are among the most effective natural treatments for PCOS. They are thought to aid in the treatment of insulin resistance in people who have it. 

However, the advantages of these water-soluble nutrients do not stop there. B6, for example, is a strong supplement that is thought to improve mood regulation by assisting in the manufacture of serotonin and dopamine, both of which are required for experiencing sensations of joy and satisfaction. Similarly, B12 is thought to assist regulate mood by playing an important role in serotonin synthesis and metabolism. 

B12 supplementation may be especially important for women with PCOS because Metformin can lower B12 levels in the body. 

  1. Berberine 

Berberine, an alkaloid derived from herbs, is available in pill or liquid form and is known for its ability to alleviate insulin resistance by fostering improved insulin signal transduction. Berberine was found to be as beneficial as metformin in lowering insulin and glucose levels, LDL levels, and increasing HDL levels in a short study of 89 women with PCOS. Berberine may promote weight loss by blocking fat storage and lowering cravings, in addition to its metabolic advantages. Berberine supplementation can also improve fertility in women with PCOS, with some studies demonstrating improved ovulation and pregnancy rates when compared to metformin or a placebo. 

  1. Omega 3  

Fish oil supplements are a good source of Omega 3s, which have anti-inflammatory characteristics and can help with inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. It's worth noting that Omega 3s from fish are more bioavailable than those from plants. 

Several placebo-controlled trials have indicated that Omega 3 supplements had a "significant benefit" over placebos in terms of disease activity and anti-inflammatory medicine use. A recent meta-analysis discovered that Omega 3s are especially beneficial in reducing insulin resistance and high levels of total cholesterol in women with PCOS. 

In addition to taking Omega 3-rich supplements, it is also recommended to consume natural sources of Omega 3s, such as fish (particularly salmon, mackerel, and herring), nuts (particularly walnuts, flaxseeds, and chia seeds), and plant oils (such as canola oil, flaxseed oil, and walnut oil). 

  1. Magnesium 

Research has shown that people with PCOS have a 19-fold higher risk of magnesium insufficiency than the overall population. This deficit can worsen insulin resistance and disrupt hormonal balance and signaling, all of which are common in PCOS patients and can have a negative impact on reproduction. 

Incorporating magnesium supplements into the therapy regimen of people with PCOS may improve insulin sensitivity, reduce inflammation, and ease PMS symptoms. It's also worth noting that magnesium-rich foods like spinach, cashews, almonds, pumpkin seeds, and whole grains can help boost magnesium levels, but it's critical to choose supplements that are easily absorbed by the body, like magnesium citrate or magnesium glycinate, and avoid magnesium oxide to avoid hypermagnesemia. 

Another way to be sure to avoid hypermagnesemia we recommend increasing your magnesium intake from diet rather than supplementing. 

  1. Zinc 

Zinc is a mineral that is needed for several enzyme functions and acts as a powerful antioxidant. It also controls hormone release, cell development, and reproduction. Women with PCOS are more likely to be zinc deficient, which can contribute to common PCOS symptoms like insulin resistance and high cholesterol. 

Fortunately, zinc supplementation has been shown to improve numerous parameters related to insulin resistance, hormone imbalances, and ovulation in PCOS women. Zinc supplements may also assist with other PCOS symptoms like acne, hair growth, weight management, and hair loss. Although zinc insufficiency is uncommon in the United States, women with PCOS may benefit from zinc supplementation to control their symptoms. 

  1. N-Acetyl-Cysteine 

N-Acetyl-Cysteine (NAC) is an amino acid-derived molecule that helps the body produce antioxidants. It comes in the shape of capsules. NAC has been shown to offer the following benefits in women with PCOS: 

Increase insulin resistance Reduce insulin and glucose resistance Encourage menstrual regularity Improve egg quality (oocytes) Reduced miscarriage rates (for women who are unresponsive to clomiphene, a fertility drug) 

This supplement is excellent for all PCOS women, especially those who plan to conceive. At least six months of usage is required to see improvements in body composition and androgen symptoms (such as hirsutism or hair growth).  

  1. Coenzyme Q10 

Coenzyme Q10 (Co-Q10) has several benefits for female fertility in both PCOS and non-PCOS women. Taking Co-Q10 pills before IVF therapy has been found in studies to improve ovarian responsiveness in women. Furthermore, Co-Q10 can help with age-related infertility issues such decreased oocyte quality and quantity. 

For PCOS patients, Co-Q10 has additional benefits. It has been discovered to have a beneficial influence on insulin and testosterone levels. 


Specific vitamins can be quite effective in a woman's PCOS management regimen. With so many "PCOS supplements" on the market, it is critical to conduct research to discover which supplements are genuinely worth investing in. 

Because each woman with PCOS is unique, the treatment method should be tailored to her specific requirements. As a result, at Nourish Nutrition, we place a high importance on assessing each individual's needs, allowing us to make necessary adjustments at each stage of their lives. As a woman approaches the time to start a family, her PCOS hormone balancing technique, for example, may need to be updated. I encourage my patients to begin this conversation with me 6-12 months before their plans so that we can fully test and alter their treatment strategy. 

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