Does Magnesium Help With Hirsutism Symptoms?
Polycystic ovary syndrome, or PCOS, is a condition that causes women to produce a higher-than-average level of male hormones. Unlike the name, this hormonal imbalance may not lead to actual cysts in the ovaries, but it can result in irregular periods and difficulty in getting pregnant, acne, weight gain, and more serious health complications, including diabetes and heart disease.
While not all cases of PCOS are so serious, the condition can also result in hirsutism, or excessive amounts of facial hair, causing a woman to become very self-conscious about her appearance. While hair removal methods such as waxing and specialty creams can address excessive facial hair, could magnesium help for the symptoms of hirsutism and PCOS?
To better understand how to treat PCOS and its symptoms, it’s good to first understand a bit more about hormones and how they affect your overall appearance. First note that everyone produces a mixture of testosterone, the “male” hormone, and estrogen, the “female” hormone. Men will have a higher ratio of testosterone to estrogen, while women will have higher levels of estrogen.
These hormones affect a wide range of health factors, as well as the physical characteristics of a person; testosterone, for example, affects a person’s overall muscle mass, the deepness of their voice, and their levels of facial hair. These are all characteristics typically associated with men, so when women have a higher-than-average amount of testosterone in their system, they may have certain masculine features, including a more muscular frame, a deeper voice, and more facial hair than average.
What Is Magnesium?
Magnesium is a mineral in the body, working as an electrolyte. Electrolytes can conduct electricity; this might sound like a bad thing to have in your body, but remember that many functions of the body, including emotions, the function of the brain, metabolism, heart contractions, and the like are all controlled by electrical impulses running along the nervous system, between synapses in the brain, and in the body’s metabolic system.
Magnesium also works to regulate your body temperature, transport energy throughout the body, calm adrenal glands, and regulate insulin and glucose; these last two factors are especially affected by PCOS and hormonal imbalance in women.
Why Women Often Lack Magnesium
Some experts estimate that up to 75% of women in the United States lack sufficient levels of magnesium in their system. This is often the result of causes such as:
- Unbalanced diet
- Chronic stress
- Excessive menstruation
- Ingesting high amounts of alcohol
- Gastrointestinal disorders
It makes sense to check your magnesium levels with your doctors, so they can see if it makes sense for you to start with a magnesium supplement. Never start a supplement on your own, as it can interact with other medications you may be taking, always check with your doctor first.
Benefits of Magnesium for Women With PCOS and Hirsutism
Hirsutism is not the only symptom of PCOS and unhealthy hormone levels in women. Magnesium has been shown to help with many symptoms related to PCOS, menopause, and other such hormonal conditions common to women. Note a few benefits of magnesium for women with hormone imbalances and even some everyday conditions that may or may not be caused by fluctuations in your hormone levels!
- Magnesium was found to help with migraines and severe headaches. This mineral relaxes blood vessels, preventing them from narrowing and then creating small clots that result in headache pain.
- Magnesium is linked to a reduction of inflammation, alleviating pain along the joints, shoulders, and back. Magnesium-infused butters and creams are often used by people who work out or who suffer from arthritis, to soothe sore muscles and joints.
- Some women enjoy relief from severe PMS symptoms by taking a magnesium supplement or eating foods high in magnesium right before their periods begin. It’s believed that magnesium helps to stop bloating, cramps, fatigue, headaches, and even irritability associated with PMS.
- Lack of proper magnesium levels might contribute to anxiety and other mood disorders. Adding magnesium-rich foods to your diet or taking a magnesium supplement can therefore alleviate your mood, especially during times of hormonal fluctuation such as during your period or the onset of menopause.
- Magnesium is thought to regulate or lower your blood pressure to a normal and healthy level. Healthy blood pressure levels are vital for avoiding heart disease, heart attacks, and other serious health complications.
Magnesium can alleviate many issues associated with hormonal imbalances in women, as said. While much research still needs to be done, it is believed that magnesium supplements can help to alleviate some symptoms of hirsutism in women. Make sure to talk to your doctor or Pharmacist before starting to take a magnesium supplement.
If you take a magnesium supplement or increase your intake of magnesium rich foods and still notice unsightly facial hair, it might then be time to consider methods of long-term hair removal. These methods might include waxing, using an epilator or hair removal cream, or having a laser hair removal treatment. These hair removal methods can ensure your hirsutism is manageable and doesn’t detract from your appearance or self-confidence.