By Grace Ingram
Polycystic ovary syndrome (commonly referred to as PCOS) is a condition that affects nearly 1 in 10 women of reproductive age (1). As the name suggests, it is characterised by enlarged ovaries with multiple cysts and comes with a plethora of unpleasant symptoms. These include irregular menstrual cycles, weight gain, and trouble controlling blood sugar levels (1).
Most current treatment options for PCOS are centred around keeping metabolic factors such as weight, cholesterol, and blood sugars within a healthy range. This is done via several strategies including medication, exercise, and diet (1).
Recently, some new evidence has emerged for the role that cinnamon may play in multiple areas of PCOS management.
Firstly, cinnamon has been shown to improve the regularity and frequency of menstrual cycles. Improvements could be seen in as little as 20 days when consuming cinnamon daily (2). Though this is promising research, the mechanism behind these improvements is still unknown (2).
Further investigation is required to better understand how cinnamon acts to help women with PCOS return to regular periods.
On top of this, cinnamon also plays a role in improving a number of factors related to the long-term health of women with PCOS.
Studies show that consuming cinnamon daily helps the body to manage blood sugar levels (3) and cholesterol levels (4) in those living with PCOS. This decreases their risk of developing chronic diseases like diabetes and heart disease later in life.
Some research suggests that cinnamon may even help to decrease obesity and fat mass of women living with PCOS, however more long-term research is required in this area before significant conclusions can be made (4).
Research shows that even 1.5g of cinnamon per day can have positive effects for those living with PCOS (4) – that’s less than half a teaspoon!
5 ways to “spice” up your diet with cinnamon:
1. Stir into your favourite breakfast oats
2. Add to baking recipes such as muffins, cookies, or banana bread
3. Sprinkle on yogurt for breakfast or a snack
4. Include it in your next smoothie
5. Add to marinades for a Mediterranean flavour
PCOS can sadly affect fertility, we also know AGE’s can too – here is what you need to know about AGE’s and fertility!