Lately, I’ve been reflecting on the differences between the way I treat Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) with Chinese herbs compared to the formulas my patients have taken elsewhere in the past with limited improvement. If you are taking or considering taking Chinese herbs for PCOS, read on to discover what makes an effective herbal formula, as revealed from the mind of a herbalist.
I believe that a custom Chinese herbal formula is the best adjunct remedy if you have PCOS and are trying to have a baby.
Chinese medicine has accumulated centuries of documented knowledge on treating menstrual disorders with herbs. I remember reading Chinese medicine texts with great interest as I came to understand the minds of past master herbalists and how they evolve in their treatment of menstrual disorders, building on the knowledge of the herbalists before them.
Some of the most significant symptoms of PCOS that can be successfully treated are delayed menstruation, and anovulation (no ovulation). Resolving these symptoms is the key to enhancing your fertility.
Anovulation and infertility are most commonly caused by Kidney deficiency. The Kidneys are often referred to as the “Root of Life”. The Essence of the Kidneys controls various stages of change in life, i.e. birth, growth, reproduction, and development. Aging itself is due to a physiological decline of Essence.
The Kidneys have a Yin and Yang aspect and in my practice, Kidney Yin herbs comprise 33-40 percent of a PCOS formula, and Yang herbs comprise 10-12 percent. I find most women’s fertile health is best optimized with Kidney Yin herbs, balanced by milder Yang herbs with less dry characteristics. Treatment is always adjusted to suit the individual.
From a Chinese Medical perspective, it is always important to look at the individual presentation of each person and not automatically put a disease or disorder into one generic pattern or diagnosis. I take issue with commercialized remedies when a complex condition is treated with one or two Chinese herbs and marketed as a PCOS tea.
Next time, peek into the mind of your herbalist and check your prescribed formula against a standard list of Kidney herbs. Get a second opinion, an experienced Chinese medicine practitioner and Herbalist can properly assess if the formula contains the right amount of Yin Yang balance for your fertile health.