By naturopath Margaret Jasinska
Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is one of the most common hormone imbalances in young women. We see several women with the condition each week at our clinic. It affects approximately 1 in 10 women of reproductive age and is the most common cause of menstrual disturbances and reduced or absent ovulation.
Now researchers have discovered a link between abnormally high levels of harmful microbes in the intestines and the condition.
A large percentage of women with PCOS are overweight or obese, and it is well known that insulin resistance (syndrome X) is a major contributor to the condition. This means the hormone insulin doesn’t work as efficiently as it should. Even slim women with PCOS tend to be insulin resistant. New research has discovered a link between bad bugs in the intestines and insulin resistance. According to the researchers:
“This novel paradigm in PCOS aetiology suggests that disturbances in bowel bacterial flora (“Dysbiosis of Gut Microbiota”) brought about by a poor diet creates an increase in gut mucosal permeability, with a resultant increase in the passage of lipopolysaccharides (LPS) from Gram negative colonic bacteria into the systemic circulation. The resultant activation of the immune system interferes with insulin receptor function, driving up serum insulin levels, which in turn increases the ovaries production of androgens and interferes with normal follicle development. Thus, the Dysbiosis of Gut Microbiota (DOGMA) theory of PCOS can account for all three components of the syndrome-anovulation/menstrual irregularity, hyperandrogenism (acne, hirsutism) and the development of multiple small ovarian cysts.”
Having an excess of bad bacteria in your gut is not always due to an unhealthy diet. You may have inherited the wrong bugs from your mother. Maybe you had several courses of antibiotics which was unavoidable because you had serious infections. Maybe you had food poisoning or gastroenteritis which affected the migrating motor complex in your intestines, leaving you prone to bacterial overgrowth. There are several reasons why a person can end up with bad gut bugs.
We are increasingly discovering the critical role that gut microbes play in our health. An imbalance in gut bugs can create or aggravate almost any disease or symptom. A sugar free, low carbohydrate diet is helpful for restoring healthy gut bugs, but sometimes more powerful strategies are needed. Some people require a course of antibiotics, while others feel better with herbal remedies. BactoClear capsules contain the herbal extract berberine, as well as essential oils of clove, oregano and thyme. They help to relieve symptoms of bloating, indigestion and medically diagnosed irritable bowel syndrome.
Having an overgrowth of the wrong gut bugs usually causes inflammation to the gut lining. The ingredients in Gut Health powder have been specifically chosen to help repair the damage.