Vitamin D and PCOS: A New Ray of Hope?
Health LibraryLatest Research in Women's Health
Vitamin D and PCOS: A New Ray of Hope?

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a prevalent endocrine disorder affecting women of reproductive age, marked by symptoms like irregular menstrual cycles, excessive hair growth, acne, and fertility issues. Recent studies have explored a connection between vitamin D levels and PCOS, suggesting that vitamin D supplementation might play a role in managing this complex condition.

Understanding the Link

Vitamin D is not just crucial for bone health but also plays a significant role in cellular growth and immune function. Interestingly, research indicates that many women with PCOS have lower levels of vitamin D compared to those without the syndrome. This deficiency has been linked to several metabolic and endocrine abnormalities associated with PCOS, including insulin resistance and hormonal imbalance.

The Study: Vitamin D Supplementation in PCOS

A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) aimed to clarify the effects of vitamin D supplementation on women suffering from PCOS. The study delved into various outcomes, including hormonal levels, inflammatory markers, and metabolic health indicators.

Key Findings

The meta-analysis, incorporating data from 13 RCTs with a total of 840 participants, highlighted several potential benefits of vitamin D supplementation for women with PCOS:

  • Improvement in Vitamin D Levels: Not surprisingly, supplementation significantly increased serum vitamin D levels, underscoring its effectiveness in correcting this common deficiency in PCOS patients.
  • Reduction in Inflammatory Markers: There was a notable decrease in serum hs-CRP levels, suggesting that vitamin D could help reduce systemic inflammation in PCOS.
  • Hormonal Improvements: The study observed reductions in total testosterone and parathyroid hormone levels. This could potentially ease some PCOS symptoms related to hormone imbalance, such as acne and hirsutism.
  • Cholesterol Management: There was also a significant decrease in total cholesterol, pointing towards an improvement in metabolic health.
  • Increased Endometrial Thickness: Interestingly, vitamin D supplementation was associated with increased endometrial thickness, which could have implications for fertility in PCOS patients.

What It Means for Women with PCOS

These findings are encouraging, especially considering the safe profile of vitamin D and its ease of supplementation. Vitamin D could potentially serve as a low-cost, effective therapeutic option to manage various aspects of PCOS, from reducing inflammation and balancing hormones to improving metabolic health.

Implementation in Daily Life

For women with PCOS, these findings suggest that checking vitamin D levels could be a worthwhile step in managing the condition. If deficiency is detected, vitamin D supplementation could be a simple strategy to help alleviate some of the symptoms associated with PCOS. However, it's crucial to consult with healthcare providers to determine the appropriate dosage and ensure that supplementation fits into the broader management strategy for PCOS.

A Look Ahead

While the results are promising, the study's authors call for more high-quality research to further solidify the role of vitamin D in PCOS treatment. Future studies with larger sample sizes and longer duration are needed to fully understand the impact of vitamin D supplementation on PCOS and its symptoms.


Vitamin D supplementation appears to offer multiple benefits for women with PCOS, addressing not just the deficiency seen in many patients but also potentially easing some of the syndrome’s burdensome symptoms. As we await more detailed studies, vitamin D emerges as a beacon of hope for many women battling with PCOS, highlighting the importance of nutritional management in chronic conditions.

  • Zhang B, Yao X, Zhong X, Hu Y, Xu J. Vitamin D supplementation in the treatment of polycystic ovary syndrome: A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Heliyon. 2023 Mar 8;9(3):e14291. doi: 10.1016/j.heliyon.2023.e14291. PMID: 36942243; PMCID: PMC10023924.
  • Yang M, Shen X, Lu D, Peng J, Zhou S, Xu L, Zhang J. Effects of vitamin D supplementation on ovulation and pregnancy in women with polycystic ovary syndrome: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Front Endocrinol (Lausanne). 2023 Aug 1;14:1148556. doi: 10.3389/fendo.2023.1148556. PMID: 37593349; PMCID: PMC10430882.
  • Han Y, Cao Q, Qiao X, Huang W. Effect of vitamin D supplementation on hormones and menstrual cycle regularization in polycystic ovary syndrome women: A systemic review and meta-analysis. J Obstet Gynaecol Res. 2023 Sep;49(9):2232-2244. doi: 10.1111/jog.15727. Epub 2023 Jun 26. PMID: 37364886.
  • Crider K, Williams J, Qi YP, Gutman J, Yeung L, Mai C, Finkelstain J, Mehta S, Pons-Duran C, Menéndez C, Moraleda C, Rogers L, Daniels K, Green P. Folic acid supplementation and malaria susceptibility and severity among people taking antifolate antimalarial drugs in endemic areas. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2022 Feb 1;2(2022):CD014217. doi: 10.1002/14651858.CD014217. PMID: 36321557; PMCID: PMC8805585.
  • Chen X, Tao C, Wang J, He B, Xu J. Meta-analysis of therapeutic efficacy and effects of integrated traditional Chinese and Western medicine on coagulation and fibrinolysis system in patients with threatened abortion and polycystic ovary syndrome. Am J Transl Res. 2022 May 15;14(5):2768-2778. PMID: 35702093; PMCID: PMC9185052.
  • Zhao JF, Li BX, Zhang Q. Vitamin D improves levels of hormonal, oxidative stress and inflammatory parameters in polycystic ovary syndrome: a meta-analysis study. Ann Palliat Med. 2021 Jan;10(1):169-183. doi: 10.21037/apm-20-2201. PMID: 33545754.
1.Understanding the Link
2.The Study: Vitamin D Supplementation in PCOS
3.Key Findings
4.What It Means for Women with PCOS
5.Implementation in Daily Life
6.A Look Ahead