Metformin, Weight Loss & Pcos – Does It Actually Work?
Did you know that one of the main reasons you can't lose weight with PCOS is because of your hormones? It's true, and that's why many women (and physicians) turn to using Metformin to try and help with weight loss. But just because it works for some people doesn't mean it will necessarily work for YOU. Find out why metformin helps with weight loss, but more important what works better and how to finally lose weight if you have PCOS. Insulin & PCOS: Why It's so Important One of the most common medications prescribed for PCOS is metformin. But, PCOS is a hormonal condition which results in weight gain, hair growth on the face, infertility, acne and estrogen/progesterone imbalances. So why is metformin, a medication used to lower blood sugar and treat insulin resistance, used to treat estrogen/progesterone imbalances in women? The logic is quite simple: Most of the symptoms of PCOS (all those listed above) stem from insulin resistanc e! In fact many physicians recommend that ALL women with PCOS should be treated for insulin resistance regardless of what their fasting insulin and fasting blood sugar levels are. This means that the root cause of PCOS (at least the majority of it) is insulin resistance, and this is why metformin is so commonly used to treat. Insulin resistance causes a block of glucose uptake in your skeletal muscles which results in a lower metabolism (and weight gain), insulin also directly acts on your ovaries and adrenals increasing androgens like testosterone and DHEA. It's also the action of insulin on your pituitary that results in increased LH production which over stimulates your ovaries resulting in the characteristic "cysts" of PCOS. High levels of DHEA and testosterone lead to acne and hair growth (hirsutism). But one simple question r Continue reading >>
Can Metformin Help With Weight Loss?
Metformin is a drug prescribed to manage blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes. You may have heard that metformin can also help you lose weight. But is it true? The answer is a resounding maybe. Here’s what you should know about what metformin can do for weight loss, as well as why your doctor may prescribe it for you. According to research, metformin can help some people lose weight. However, it’s not clear why metformin may cause weight loss. One theory is that it may prompt you to eat less by reducing your appetite. It may also change the way your body uses and stores fat. Although studies have shown that metformin may help with weight loss, the drug is not a quick-fix solution. According to one long-term study, the weight loss from metformin tends to occur gradually over one to two years. The amount of weight lost also varies from person to person. In the study, the average amount of weight lost after two or more years was four to seven pounds. Taking the drug without following other healthy habits may not lead to weight loss. Individuals who follow a healthy diet and exercise while taking metformin tend to lose the most weight. This may be because metformin is thought to boost how many calories you burn during exercise. If you don’t exercise, you likely won’t have this benefit. In addition, any weight loss you have may only last as long as you take the medication. That means if you stop taking metformin, there’s a good chance you will return to your original weight. And even while you’re still taking the drug, you may slowly gain back any weight you’ve lost. In other words, metformin may not be the magic diet pill some people have been waiting for. It has been shown to reduce weight in some, but not others. One of the benefits of metformin Continue reading >>
The Low Down On Metformin And Vitamin B12 Deficiency
So many women with PCOS are prescribed Metformin (an insulin-sensitizing drug) to manage their Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. And for good reason too. Metformin has been shown to improve many aspects of PCOS, including weight loss, fertility and improved testosterone levels (1). But, it also leads to Vitamin B12 deficiency if used at high doses or for long periods of time. So, here’s what you need to know about Metformin and Vitamin B12 deficiency with PCOS. What is Metformin? As I have already mentioned, Metformin is an insulin sensitizing drug that is often prescribed for women withPCOS. It works by decreasing absorption of glucose through the intestines, lowering the amount of glucose produced by the liver and making the body more sensitive to the insulin that is being produced. The overall effect of Metformin use for PCOS is lowered testosterone levels, improved ovulation and fertility as well as a more regular menstrual cycle. This is all sounding good, right? Well, it is good although there are some nasty side effects. A full discussion on Metformin is not going to be dealt with now, though. I really want to hone in on Metformin’s effect of Vitamin B12 levels as this could be affecting you right now. A free 6 lesson course that has helped women with PCOS around the world learn how to see lasting changes in their PCOS symptoms. Ready to join? Vitamin B12 Vitamin B12 is a vitamin that is vital for the body’s functioning. It is important for red blood cell formation, neurological function and DNA formation. If you are deficient in this important vitamin, it could lead to anaemia and neurological problems. (including memory loss – something that I have seen cropping up more often in PCOS communities). (2) Metformin and Vitamin B12 Right, so this is where it gets Continue reading >>
Foods To Eat While Taking Metformin
Metformin is a prescription medication used in the treatment of Type 2 diabetes. Metformin can be taken alone or in conjunction with other medications, such as insulin. It is important to eat a healthy diet. A dietician can make recommendations for your particular case, but most people with diabetes eat a healthy variety of foods in moderation and follow regular mealtimes. Video of the Day Carbohydrates are broken into two main categories—sugars (simple carbohydrates) and starches (complex carbohydrates). Carbohydrates break down into blood sugar during digestion. Focus on eating complex carbohydrates such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes and low-fat dairy products. Many people with diabetes use the Glycemic Index (GI) to choose foods. The higher GI foods tend to cause a greater increase in blood sugar. Low GI foods tend to be higher in fat. Non-starchy vegetables like spinach, carrots, broccoli and great beans are choices. Eat brown rice and whole wheat pasta. Include high-fiber foods. Aim for 25 to 30 grams of fiber daily. Dietary fiber consists of the parts of plant foods that the body cannot digest. Fiber decreases the risk of heart disease and helps control blood sugar levels. Great sources of fiber include vegetables, fruits, legumes, whole-wheat flour, wheat bran and nuts. Include dry beans such as kidney and pinto beans. Heart healthy dieting is extremely important for a person with diabetes due to the increased risk of heart disease and stroke caused by the accelerated development of clogged or hardened arteries. Limit your intake of saturated fats to less than 7 percent of your daily calories. Eat as little trans fat as possible. Choose monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats instead. Sources of monounsaturated fats include olive and canola oil. Continue reading >>
Metformin is a medicine used to treat type 2 diabetes and sometimes polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). Type 2 diabetes is an illness where the body doesn't make enough insulin, or the insulin that it makes doesn't work properly. This can cause high blood sugar levels (hyperglycemia). PCOS is a condition that affects how the ovaries work. Metformin lowers your blood sugar levels by improving the way your body handles insulin. It's usually prescribed for diabetes when diet and exercise alone have not been enough to control your blood sugar levels. For women with PCOS, metformin stimulates ovulation even if they don't have diabetes. It does this by lowering insulin and blood sugar levels. Metformin is available on prescription as tablets and as a liquid that you drink. Key facts Metformin works by reducing the amount of sugar your liver releases into your blood. It also makes your body respond better to insulin. Insulin is the hormone that controls the level of sugar in your blood. It's best to take metformin with a meal to reduce the side effects. The most common side effects are feeling sick, vomiting, diarrhoea, stomach ache and going off your food. Metformin does not cause weight gain (unlike some other diabetes medicines). Metformin may also be called by the brand names Bolamyn, Diagemet, Glucient, Glucophage, and Metabet. Who can and can't take metformin Metformin can be taken by adults. It can also be taken by children from 10 years of age on the advice of a doctor. Metformin isn't suitable for some people. Tell your doctor before starting the medicine if you: have had an allergic reaction to metformin or other medicines in the past have uncontrolled diabetes have liver or kidney problems have a severe infection are being treated for heart failure or you have recentl Continue reading >>
Pcos And Metformin | Polycystic Ovary Syndrome | Patient
Hi, I'm 27 and have been diagnosed with PCOS for a few years now but have been putting off taking metformin for about two years, cause it made me feel reallynauseous, dizzy and fatigued. However, I recently seen my gynaecologist and headvised me to take the medication 500mg twice a day and said I really need to lose the weight and to regulate my periods again. I would like to know what helped other people lose weight while taking metformin e.g healthy eating/diet and exercise, or if there's anything else I can try please share.. And has metformin actually helped lose the weight? And when did people start seeing changes or progress while taking the medication. Would love to hear your stories or suggestions. Thanks in advance This reply and 2 others have been deleted by a moderator. We delete content if it doesnt meet the requirements in our Terms & Conditions . Yes losing weight really really helps. I can't stress enough how much important it is to lose weight in pcos. It helped me tremendously. It is equally important to lose weight in a healthy way and not going on a diet. Lose weight through exercise. Because if you diet then it will cause insulin spikes which will in turn fluctuate your hormones Hi ther. I'm 29 and I was diagnosed with pcos when I was 20. I suffered really bad with the side effects and didn't take the medication properly for years because I was dreading the effects. I went back to my GP and she changed my dose to 1kg slow release once a day. And it's perfect for me. I struggle with my weight also and constantly joining slimming world etc. I went to see my nurse practitioner to see if they could give me anything to help boost my weight loss as I need to loose around 3-4 stone to be eligible for IVF. So she started me on orlistat. I am now doing a low Continue reading >>
Metformin For Pcos: How It Works, Side Effects & Health Tips
Metformin decreases insulin resistance and helps the body in utilizing insulin effectively. Given that PCOS is also associated with insulin resistance, doctors started prescribing Metformin for this hormonal disorder as well. Let’s understand the role of metformin for PCOS in detail. Insulin Resistance: The Reason Behind Prescribing Metformin For PCOS Insulin resistance is a common condition in a majority of PCOS patients. Experts believe it is a key reason behind this condition. If you’re experiencing insulin resistance, your body fails to respond to normal levels of insulin. As a result, glucose starts to accumulate in the blood. To tackle excess blood sugar, the pancreas produce more insulin. This condition is called hyperinsulinemia or the presence of excessive insulin in the blood. High levels of insulin in the body trigger the over-production of male hormones in the female body. Excess male hormones in the female body lead to symptoms of PCOS such as acne, excess body hair, male pattern baldness, and belly fat. Metformin For PCOS – How Does It Work? The USFDA approved metformin in 1994. Metformin for PCOS works in the following ways: Improving insulin sensitivity of cells, thus helping reduce insulin levels in the blood Curbing the production of glucose inside the liver Increasing the absorption of glucose by cells, and Inhibiting the use of fatty acids for production of energy. Doctors also figured out that prescribing metformin for PCOS helped patients in regularizing their periods. They also found that the drug helped in reducing the levels of male hormones in PCOS patients. PCOS patients have to undergo something called as “ovary stimulation” prior to IVF treatment. Doctors prescribe Metformin for PCOS to reduce the risk of a condition called ovarian Continue reading >>
Pcos And Metformin – Is This Treatment Right For You?
Here at Flo Living headquarters I speak with many women suffering with PCOS who have either been offered Metformin and decided against it or have tried Metformin and it’s not worked for them. If you have a diagnosis of PCOS it’s very likely that at some point your doctor has suggested Metformin. I personally was what would be considered the “perfect” candidate for this treatment when I was in my 20s and suffering with PCOS – overweight, struggling with acne and a complete lack of periods. However, I never tried it myself – instead I created a protocol for myself that became Flo Living. I’ve since helped many women manage their PCOS successfully with this protocol, just as I did my own diagnosis. That said, I speak with women so often about the Metformin option that I want to share my perspective with you. Although I do not dismiss the option completely, I do have some caveats and concerns. What is Metformin? Metformin is a first-line medication for those suffering with type 2 diabetes. It is also presented as a treatment for PCOS sufferers who are also overweight or obese. Not all PCOS sufferers have weight gain as a symptom, it depends on the kind of PCOS. Women with the kind of PCOS that causes weight gain are usually insulin resistant. Metformin reduces overall insulin levels. Insulin resistance is when the cells of your body become resistant to the hormone insulin, preventing glucose from entering your cells to be used for energy, and instead causing soaring levels of sugar blood stream bringing about diabetes, pre-diabetes or insulin-resistant PCOS. The connection between insulin and PCOS is blood sugar regulation. We hear about this most commonly with diabetes, but it’s also very important with PCOS. An unstable, constantly spiking and crashing, bl Continue reading >>
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What was your first week on Metformin like? Horrendous? Terrible? Filled with waves of nausea? The sickest you’ve felt in your life? Let’s reminisce for a minute: About a dozen years ago, on December 24, I went to the doctor for a routine physical. Are you envious of my holiday plans? This was in the years before Pinterest, so I was carrying on with regular life activities on Christmas Eve morn rather than bedazzling the cap of an Elf on the Shelf. Anyway, at the Christmas Eve check-up, my physician mentioned that he had read promising things about Metformin being used in women with PCOS. We chatted about Metformin for a bit, talked about other PCOS things, finished up the tests, and then I headed to the pharmacy to pick up the prescription. We had our traditional Christmas Eve dinner of ham, funeral potatoes, salad with asparagus and strawberries; rolls, and other delicious items. Breaking with tradition, this year’s Christmas Eve dinner was followed by Metformin for me. After dinner, we read the Christmas story from the Bible, watched a short film depicting the events in Luke 2, read a new Christmas book, and headed off to bed. That’s when the fun began. In sum: Worst Christmas Ever. Pros: Family, friends, gifts, good music, good food. Cons: Visiting the loo every 15 minutes, constant nausea, wanting to curl up in bed and not wake up for days. Public Service Announcement: Do not start Metformin for the first time on the day prior to a major holiday. My first year on Metformin was pretty rough. I felt like I had morning sickness every single day. I had diarrhea and nausea every morning. When I skipped a few doses hoping for relief, my symptoms would be twice as bad when I re-started. Looking back, I’m actually amazed that I kept taking the medication. If I st Continue reading >>
Metformin Weight Loss – How It Works, Benefits, And Side Effects
Do you find it extremely difficult to refrain from eating all the time? Have you gained too much weight? Or did your doctor just tell you that you have polycystic ovaries? If you answered “yes” to any one of these questions, chances are your body is resistant to insulin. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, insulin resistance can lead to diabetes type 2, prediabetes, and infertility. This can take a toll on your physical and emotional health (1). To counteract these health problems, doctors often prescribe the drug Metformin. This drug has helped many to lose weight and improve insulin sensitivity, and it can definitely help you too. So, read on to find out how Metformin can help you lose weight, the dosage, side effects, and much more. What Is Metformin? Metformin is a drug that helps to control the blood glucose levels. It is a derivative of biguanide (a group of drugs that prevent the production of glucose by the liver) that helps to improve insulin sensitivity, thereby reducing the sugar levels in the blood and the risk of diabetes type 2. It also helps regulate the amount of sugar absorbed in the intestine. Metformin was first synthesized in the 1920s. But only in 1957, it was made available in the market as an effective antidiabetic drug. It is generally sold under the brand name Glucophage and is taken orally. It is taken by people who are obese and at the risk of developing diabetes type 2 and by women who have irregular periods and are at a risk of PCOs and infertility (2). So, how does Metformin aid weight loss? Find out next. Metformin And Weight Loss – How It Works ? In obese individuals, metformin acts by suppressing the production of sugar by the liver. It reduces the rate of gluconeogenesis and glycogeno Continue reading >>
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Paleo And Metformin For Pcos Not Unheard Of?
Hi there! On my journey with PCOS that's going on 11 years, I've been on combo birth control and aldactone, lapsed into being untreated for 7 years and went back to being on medicine after going to the ER more than I should've for cysts. I was put on 1000mg of metformin and combo birth control which was increased to 2000mg in August after switching docs for the third time. I had a lapse in taking it again and gained 20 lbs to put me at 190 lbs as of New Year's day. I started eating clean after that, as well as working out... I lost 5 pounds but haven't lost any more. I've more or less maintained, with the edema, fatigue, headaches and acne appearing. I started back on the metformin this past week at my current dosage, but eating gluten and select dairy makes me feel sick and eating more than 30g of fruit sugar does the same. It's high time I go Paleo. 1 1 Worst Carb After Age 50 If you're over 50 and you eat this carb you will never lose belly fat. healthplus50.com 2 5 Worst Arthritis Foods Limit these foods to decrease arthritis pain and inflammation. naturalhealthreports.net With all that being said, is it not unheard of to be on metformin and be Paleo? Continue reading >>
What Will Happen If I Stop Taking Metformin For Pcos?
Metformin helps you manage the symptoms of the disease. There is no no doubt that it works. But it does not offer a cure. You can discontinue metformin on only one condition - you should exercise more and cut out all refined sugars and processed foods or just look around to what other diabetics do for insulin resistance. I cannot emphasize home-cooked food enough. Home cooked-food without those processed sauces and canned ingredients. Try it for a short time after you are on an exercise regimen for atleast a month.Keep checking your sugar from time to time. You will know that you need to get back on your metformin if the cravings and the bluesy moods come back. If the cravings don’t come back well and good, but if it does, you should get back on metformin. What I can assure you is that there is no harm in trying - PCOS is a lifelong thing - so nothing that you do can kill or cure you in a day or week. Whatever works will work over months. So give exercise and no sugar a try for two -three months. In the first month continue with the metformin with the exercise and in the next, reduce use by either reducing dosage or eating one every two days. And then if things look positive stop completely. Losing weight also helps reduce metformin dependence. While you are at it one basic advice I can give you is - don’t get into tiring exercise regimes (walking for an hour is also good), don’t get into diets unless your gynaecologist/endocrinologist has recommended one (even then don’t get into anything punishing because sustaining it will be stressful) and do everything it takes to keep a healthy mind - remove or modify habits from your life that induce stress - be it your job, family or friends. Identify them and pull the plug. Be nice to yourself. Please note that if you a Continue reading >>
Pcos Diet Vs. Normal Diet
I recently came across a piece of research that made me SO excited and I just have to share it with you as it could completely transform how you manage your PCOS. Now this research is a gem, a treasure to be looked after and worn close to your heart. It confirms that you don’t have to be a victim of PCOS but that you do have some power and control over what happens with your body. Are you ready for this? The Gem Diet and lifestyle changes are more effective than Clomid and Metformin in managing PCOS (1). I have always firmly believed this but to see it in black and white, evidenced in medical and scientific journals, validates my own approach to managing my PCOS. Researchers compared the effectiveness of Clomid, Metformin, Clomid combined with Metformin, and Lifestyle changes. They measured pregnancy rates and found that Clomid had a 12.5% pregnancy rate with Metformin being 14.4% and the Clomid and Metformin rate was 14.8%. Here is the amazing thing: Diet and lifestyle changes resulted in a 20% pregnancy rate! This is HUGE and so exciting. Well, you might say that you aren't trying to conceive. Why is this relevant for you? Pregnancy rates confirm that a woman has ovulated and if ovulation has occurred, hormones are probably balanced, testosterone levels have dropped and insulin is probably more under control. If that were to carry on over the long term, you can bet that weight loss, decrease in excess hair and improvements in acne are just around the corner. Sounds good, doesn't it?! Right, we have established that diet changes are key to managing PCOS. But just how should we be eating and what should our diet look like? Is it enough to eat a healthy diet or even follow a weight loss program? Will that help us manage our PCOS symptoms? Let's try and answer these que Continue reading >>
The Best Diet For Pcos: Splitting Fact From Fiction
PCOS is one of the most common hormonal disorders in the developed world. In fact, it’s thought to affect almost 7% of pre-menopausal women in the US (1). But there is surprisingly limited information on how to treat it naturally. This article explores the best diet for PCOS, as based on scientific evidence. If You Prefer Video: What is PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome)? PCOS (Polycystic ovary syndrome) is a condition characterised by hormonal imbalances in women. Specifically, it’s an imbalance in the amount of male hormones (or androgens) produced by the ovaries. This short Youtube video illustrates the condition well. The term polycystic ovary means, “to have multiple cysts in the ovaries.” However, the development of cysts isn’t actually necessary for the diagnosis of PCOS. Unfortunately there is no known cure yet, and the cause is unknown. However, genetic predisposition coupled with inadequate diet is thought to be a major driver (2). Summary: PCOS is characterised by an imbalance of male hormones in women. It is likely a genetic condition triggered by diet. Excessive androgen secretion appears to be responsible for most PCOS symptoms. Most will experience one or more of the following symptoms: Irregular or absence of menstrual periods Excess body or facial hair, indicative of increased androgen levels Cysts on one or both ovaries Uncontrollable weight gain Infertility Sleep apnoea Insulin resistance and associated metabolic problems. Summary: PCOS has a cluster of symptoms related to increased male hormone levels. PCOS and Diet: Insulin and Weight Loss are Key The most effective eating pattern for PCOS is one that promotes weight loss and reduces levels of the hormone insulin (3, 4). This is because PCOS coupled with weight gain drives insulin resistance Continue reading >>
3 Things You Need To Know About Metformin
September 30, 2015 by Dr. Brooke in Be Better , Eat Better , pcos 3 Things You Need To Know About Metformin Metformin is recommended by doctors for women with PCOS that want to loose weight or otherwise manage their PCOS and insulin resistance. But there are 3 very important things that you need to know about it including the fact that it's not the only option! Let me first say, I dont hate Metformin for women with PCOS . For some women it really does help spur ovulation, control blood sugar and help with some weight management but.its not without its share of issues. And its definitely not the magic bullet for weight loss although its usually presented that way. How Metformin (or its generic form: Glucophage) Works Metformin is typically given with meals throughout the day, or more commonly now the extended release version is given once with dinner or at bedtime. While only having to pop a pill one time per day is always appealing, this once a day dosing (especially at bedtime) is where I see the most problems with my patients. It lowers both fasting and post meal glucose levels by decreasing the glucose absorption in your intestines after a meal; as well as decreasing the amount of glucose your liver makes for later use. It also does help improve insulin sensitivity by increasing glucose movement into a cell. All sounds good so far right? Not so fast, here are the most common issues I see in women using Metformin: Metformin is notorious for causing sometimes severe digestive issues including stomach pain or upset, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and even a sense of body weakness or metallic taste in the mouth in some. And it is touted as not causing low blood sugar as many older blood sugar lowering drugs did, however I see it every day in my practice that Metformin can m Continue reading >>