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Berberine aids in-vitro fertilization
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Berberine aids in-vitro fertilization

Berberine aids in-vitro fertilization

Some infertile women have PCOS, or polycystic ovary syndrome, with symptoms such as irregular periods, hormone imbalances, and a link to insulin resistance. In this study, 128 infertile women with PCOS undergoing in-vitro fertilization treatment took 500 mg of berberbine or 500 mg of metformin, three times per day, or a placebo.

After three months, both berberine and metformin groups had better hormone balance and fasting insulin levels, but berberine more effectively lowered total and LDL cholesterol. Compared to placebo, both groups had more pregnancies. The live birth rate was highest for berberine, at 48.6 percent, compared to 36.8 and 20.6 percent for metformin and placebo, respectively.

Reference: Clinical Endocrinology; 2014, Vol. 80, No. 3, 425-31

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Additional Comments from Don Goldberg

Berberine is a component (an alkaloid) of various herbs, including Goldenseal, Barberry, and Oregon Grape.

To get a dosage in the range utilized in this study, however, a concentrate of berberine would need to be used. Some of the products available are the following:

Code 62231    THORNE RESEARCH    BERBERINE 500 MG    60 Veggicaps    
Code 66573    NATURAL FACTORS    BERBERINE 500 MG WELLBETX    60 Veggicaps
Code 54811    INTEGRATIVE THERAPY    BERBERINE COMPLEX    90 CAP
Code 63014    DAVINCI LABS    BERBERINE FORCE 500 MG    60 Veggicaps

Berberine, and herbs that contain berberine, should not be used by pregnant or lactating women, unless recommended by a physician.

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Note: A version of this article appeared in the Summer 2016 Willner Window Newsletter/Product Catalog.