Effects of Prebiotics & Probiotic for PCOS Hormone Balance

Effects of Prebiotics & Probiotic for PCOS Hormone Balance

PCOS is a hormonal disorder that affects how the ovaries function, leading to irregular menstrual cycles and an imbalance in sex hormones, often resulting in symptoms like cyst formation in the ovaries and excess production of androgens. PCOS can also cause other symptoms, such as irregular periods, infertility, weight gain, and excess hair growth. It is a common condition among women of reproductive age and can have long-term health implications if left untreated. 

What Causes PCOS?

Although the exact cause of PCOS is unknown and may differ from woman to woman, several factors can have an impact on PCOS. Some of them are listed below. 

  • Hormonal Imbalance

The bodies of women with PCOS frequently contain higher-than-normal levels of androgens or male hormones. This hormone leads to the formation of ovarian cysts and irregularities in the menstrual cycle.

  • Genetics

The fact that PCOS frequently runs in families suggests that the illness may have a hereditary basis.

  • Inflammation

Prolonged, low-grade inflammation may contribute to the onset of PCOS and the symptoms that go along with it. Inflammation can impact insulin sensitivity and hormone levels, which can aid in the onset and development of the illness.

  • Lifestyle Variables

 Several lifestyle variables, including stress, bad eating habits, and inactivity, might make women more susceptible to PCOS or make their symptoms worse for those who already have the disease. 

How Can Prebiotics and Probiotics Help Ease PCOS?

Through several methods, prebiotics and probiotics have demonstrated encouraging results in enhancing hormonal balance in women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). These methods include intestinal bacteria populations and pH regulation, improved intestinal digestion and absorption of nutrients, and inhibition of the generation of inflammatory cytokines.

Since prebiotics and probiotics can alter the gut microbiota, experts frequently suggest using them in the therapy of PCOS. More specifically, they aid in the restoration of the general microbial balance and the growth of good bacteria like Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. They also help to lower intestinal permeability, which lessens the amount of lipopolysaccharides that are transferred from the intestine into the circulation. Together, these benefits help to lessen the symptoms of PCOS and enhance overall well-being.

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PCOS and Gut Health

The relationship between the gut microbiome and PCOS is complex; however, several studies have shown that the composition of the gut microbiome is altered in women with PCOS. Research has also suggested that there is less diversity in the types of microbes living in the guts of women with PCOS, with fewer different types of good bacteria and higher numbers of bad bacteria.

An increase in the amounts of bad bacteria in the gut may activate the immune system and cause inflammation, leading to the symptoms associated with PCOS such as ovarian dysfunction and insulin resistance. Therefore, looking after your gut is an important aspect of PCOS treatment.

Foods That Can be Consumed to Deal With PCOS

  • Probiotic Foods

  1. Yoghurt: Yoghurt that contains live, active cultures helps support a healthy microbial environment in the stomach.
  2. Sauerkraut: A probiotic-rich fermented cabbage.
  3. Kimchi: A fermented vegetable dish from Korea that is high in probiotics and typically made with cabbage and other vegetables.
  • Prebiotic foods

  1. Garlic: Packed with prebiotic fibre and high in inulin.
  2. Asparagus: This vegetable has prebiotic fibres such as inulin.
  3. Bananas: Prebiotic fibre can be obtained from resistant starch, which is present in ripe bananas.
  4. Whole grains: Prebiotic fibres found in oats, barley, and whole wheat can help to maintain intestinal health.

By including these foods in your diet, you can promote a healthy gut microbiota, which may benefit insulin resistance, hormone balance, and inflammation—all of which are important for managing PCOS. 

Effects of Probiotics and Prebiotics on PCOS

Keep the following considerations in mind while incorporating probiotics into your diet to manage PCOS effectively.

  1. Consume a wide variety of probiotics and prebiotics to help maintain a healthy gut microbiota. For probiotics, include a variety of fermented foods; for prebiotics, include a range of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
  2. Select probiotics and prebiotics from high-quality, organic, and minimally processed sources.
  3. Foods high in probiotics and prebiotics have their advantages, but moderation is essential. 
  4. Overindulging in some foods, particularly those heavy in sugar or processed carbs, can cause gut bacterial imbalances and worsen the symptoms of PCOS.

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By enhancing insulin sensitivity, decreasing inflammation, fostering a healthy gut microbiota, and supporting weight management, prebiotics and probiotics may help manage PCOS. While they aren't direct treatments for PCOS, incorporating prebiotics and probiotics into your diet may help alleviate some symptoms of PCOS and support overall health. 


  • Do prebiotics balance hormones?

Yes, they help balance and maintain hormone levels.

  • Are prebiotics good for fertility?

A healthy gut is key for overall health, including fertility health.

  • Can I take prebiotics on an empty stomach?

Probiotics are best taken on an empty stomach. Intake of prebiotics can reduce the absorption of some medications.


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