Herbs for PCOS

Let’s discuss one of the leading causes of infertility in women, Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). Symptoms include heavy bleeding, heavy cramping, male pattern baldness in women, hair growing on your face and body, weight gain, acne, dark patches on your skin, headaches, lack of periods, and irregular periods.

In PCOS, there is liquid (mucus) that forms around the immature eggs. This liquid keeps the eggs from maturing. If the eggs don’t mature, then the ovaries do not release the eggs to be fertilized and ovulation cannot occur. Lack of ovulation causes hormonal dysregulation in the body: an increase in male hormones (Androgen) and a decrease in the female hormones (estrogen, progesterone, FSH, and LH).

Doctors do not agree on what causes PCOS, although they believe it is a combination of factors such as insulin resistance, inflammation, stress, and genetics. In addition to infertility, PCOS can lead to sleep apnea, endometrial cancer, depression, and metabolic syndrome.

Treatment for PCOS begins with a change in lifestyle and diet. Removing mucus-causing foods has historically been shown to reduce the liquid build-up in the ovaries. Increasing fruit and vegetable intake will aid the body in cleansing and detoxing toxins from the body while providing the nutrients it needs to function optimally. Increasing aerobic exercise will also help the body to lose weight and remove toxins. Maintaining a healthy weight can help decrease insulin resistance and regulate your period.

You can do all of this simultaneously by taking a detox, allowing your body to eliminate toxins and remove pounds of waste. Check out my 7-Day Detox Challenge to choose the perfect detox for you.

Herbs historically used for PCOS include Red Clover, Fenugreek, Maca Root, Ashwagandha, and Licorice.

Red Clover and Fenugreek contain phytoestrogens, plant-based estrogen, that aids in balancing estrogen levels in the body. Make a tea with Red Clover.

Fenugreek has historically been used to control insulin resistance. Use the seeds or the dried leaves in cooking.

Maca Root has traditionally been used to boost fertility and may help balance hormones and cortisol levels. Maca root powder can be mixed with water, smoothies, and other beverages.

Ashwagandha has historically been used to balance cortisol levels which can improve symptoms of PCOS. Use ashwagandha in broths that simmer for long periods of time.

Licorice’s anti-inflammatory properties have historically been used to help metabolize sugar and balance hormones. Use the root or powder of this plant to make tea.

You can purchase all of these herbs in my apothecary. Remember that the effectiveness of herbs improves with the combination of diet and lifestyle changes. Reach out to me for your personalized health and herbal consultation to learn more about what herbs may be perfect for your body and what changes you can make to reduce symptoms of PCOS.

As always, speak to your health care provider before taking any herbs.

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