Objective: To determine the effect of cinnamon on menstrual cyclicity and metabolic dysfunction in women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
Study design: In a prospective, placebo controlled, double-blinded randomized trial, 45 women with PCOS were randomized (1:1) to receive cinnamon supplements (1.5 g/d) or placebo for 6 months. Menstrual cyclicity (average cycles/month) during the 6 months study period was compared between the 2 groups using the Mann-Whitney U test. Changes in menstrual cyclicity and insulin resistance between baseline and the 6 month study period were compared between the 2 groups using Wilcoxon signed rank tests.
Results: The 45 women were randomized, 26 women completed 3 months of the study, and 17 women completed the entire 6 months of the study. During the 6 month intervention, menstrual cycles were more frequent in patients taking cinnamon compared with patients taking placebo (median, 0.75; interquartile range, 0.5-0.83 vs median, 0.25; interquartile range, 0-0.54; P = .0085; Mann Whitney U). In patients taking cinnamon, menstrual cyclicity improved from baseline (+ 0.23 cycles/month 95% confidence interval, 0.099-0.36), yet did not improve for women taking placebo. (P = .0076, Wilcoxon signed rank). Samples (n = 5) of serum from the luteal phase in different patients within the cinnamon group were thawed and ovulatory progesterone levels (>3 ng/mL) confirmed. Luteal phase progesterone levels (>3 ng/mL, n = 5) confirmed ovulatory menses. Measures of insulin resistance or serum androgen levels did not change for either group.
Conclusion: These preliminary data suggest that cinnamon supplementation improves menstrual cyclicity and may be an effective treatment option for some women with PCOS.
Keywords: PCOS; cinnamon; randomized controlled trial.
Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.