**pics at the end of the post **
Ok ladies (sorry, this might not apply to men), after a LOT of research, I have been using inositol (myo-inositol in powder form) for about 2 months now and I wanted to wait at least this long so that I can be sure that this is not a temporary fix. Inositol's benefits are extensively discussed on PCOS forums, but haven't recently been discussed on acne.org so I thought this might help some of you who do not want to take bcp or other hormonal treatments or would like to supplement hormonal treatments with inositol. Basically, inositol is a B vitamin but it's not typically included in B-complexes anymore because it can be produced inside the body. However, recent studies showed that women with PCOS or other hormonal imbalances might be deficient in inositol, so in my opinion inositol functions as a pro-hormone rather than just a vitamin (as does vitamin D). I have PCOS and low progesterone, and I also have symptoms of estrogen excess and high androgens, that's why I thought this would be a good multi-tasker.
What I noticed the first month and then 2nd month of using inositol:
1. Reduction of facial fuzz/hair (reduction confirmed by my esthetician) - inositol is also supposed to help with hair growth on scalp, but I haven't noticed too much of a change so far.
2. Reduction of numbness in extremities (this was a bonus - inositol can benefit the nervous system)
3. Better sleep, less insomnia (another bonus)
4. Fewer flare ups, pimples taking less time to heal (I noticed this about 3 weeks into it). PMS breakout was less severe last month and healed in 2 days. This month I skipped my ovulation breakout, which hasn't happened in over 1 year! Face feels flat, no pimples under the surface, just a lot of hyperpigmentation, red marks and scars (but at this point, I'll take what I can get).
5. My blood flow during my period is more normal
I should add that I'm also doing other things to control my acne because some of it is triggered by high histamines. What else I'm going: vitamin D prescription (3rd month), vitamin C twice a day, digestive enzymes with large meals, low histamine diet, gluten-free, low carb, low sugar, added more meat to diet, reduced grains. I also get regular facials with aloe peels, high frequency and red/blue light treatments. I think hitting acne from various angles is the most successful approach. One supplement or pill might not fix all your issues, and might even create new hormonal imbalances. Stress management and regular exercise are also important. Just because you are taking something for your acne, doesn't mean you can be unhealthy in other aspects and just rely on a pill to do all the work.
Anyway, just wanted to mention inositol as another option for you, with NO side effects at the recommended dosage. You have to work your way to the recommended dosage, which is 1/4 teaspoon per day. I started with 1/8 and felt a bit dizzy the first few times, but now I take about 1/4 teaspoon split into 2 doses twice a day. Inositol is water soluble, so it's best to divide your dosage. Don't take too much - less is more in this case and BE PATIENT. Do some research on it, most studies were done in Europe (Mediterranean). And speaking from experience, mediterranean women with PCOS have some of the most stubborn and persistent symptoms (like facial hair and acne), so it's very promising that they saw results in the studies between 8 weeks - 6 months.
Benefits of myo-inositol according to the Miscarriage Research Website:
- restores normal ovulatory activity
- increases fertilization rate
- prevents spina bifida birth defect
- lowers free testosterone (research has shown up to a 73% reduction)
- lowers total testosterone (as much as 65% reduction)
- lowers LH (as much as 55% reduction)
- lowers insulin response after meals (as much as 62% reduction)
- lowers DHEA-S (as much as 49% reduction)
- increases SHBG (as much as 92% increase)
- lowers androstenedione (as much as 27% reduction)
- lowers triglycerides (as much as 51% reduction)
- lowers blood pressure (minor decrease)
- increases peak progesterone (129% increase in one study)
If you are interested, please read the following clinical studies and medical articles on the many benefits of inositol.
- Unfer V, Carlmango G, Dante G, Facchinetti F (2012) Effects of myo-inositol in women with PCOS: a systematic review of randomized controlled trials. Gynecol Endocrinol 28(7):509-15.
- Gerli S, Papleo E, Ferrari A, Renzo GC (2007) Randomized, double blind placebo-controlled trial: effects of Myo-inositol on ovarian function and metabolic factors in women with PCOS. European Review for Medical and Pharmacological Sciences 11: 347-354.
- Zacchè MM, Caputo L, Filippis S, Zacchè G, Dindelli M, Ferrari A (2009) Efficacy of myo-inositol in the treatment of cutaneous disorders in young women with polycystic ovary syndrome. Gynecol Endocrinol 25(8):508-13.
- Lam S, McWilliams A, leRiche J, MacAulay C, Wattenberg L, Szabo E (2006) A Phase I Study of myo-Inositol for Lung Cancer Chemoprevention. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 15: 1526.
And my question is: Why the *&%# aren't there more studies on this, and why do doctors underestimate it as a supplement? Well, because then pharmaceutical companies would go broke, that's why. I had to see several doctors recently for some other health issues, and when they asked how I managed to get my acne under control and I said I was taking inositol they had no idea what it was. It just goes to show you that you need to do your research before relying on mainstream treatments that can have serious side effects.
Edited by WishClean, 05 December 2013 - 06:52 PM.