How Does Myo-Inositol Affect Fertility?*

Sep 14, 2020 12:40:41 PM

Written By:
Ramneek S. Bhogal, DC, DABCI


Conceiving a child is an awe-inspiring, complex process. Many factors impact fertility, and many doctors and their patients continually search for ways to support the process and increase the likelihood of conception.

When it comes to fertility, there are many aspects of an aspiring mother’s health that come into play. A healthy lifestyle, proper diet, adequate exercise, and plenty of rest are all practices that can encourage fertility. Additionally, there are nutritional compounds like CoQ10, Choline, and Myo-Inositol that play an important role in conception and may promote fertility.* In this article, we’ll discuss Myo-Inositol and address the most commonly asked questions regarding its role in fertility.*


What is Myo-Inositol?

Myo-inositol, commonly referred to as B8, is a carbohydrate compound similar to compounds in the B-vitamin family. It’s ubiquitous in the human diet and akin to choline in how it works in the human body. One of its primary functions is to fortify the structure of cells.*

One of inositol’s other primary functions is to regulate the metabolism and subsequently, sex hormones.* The body can convert Myo-inositol to D-chiro-inositol, a stereoisomer of Myo-inositol. This type of inositol acts to optimize insulin reception at a cellular level.* It helps support the bonding of insulin to the cell membrane, thereby regulating insulin release.* Because insulin levels correspond with hormones such as estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone, it also helps to regulate the hormone cascade.* Therefore, at a cellular level, inositol has a powerful impact on metabolism and the structural development and maintenance of cells.

Because Myo-inositol is readily available in foods such as citrus, whole grains, nuts, and legumes, deficiencies in this essential nutrient are not very common. Generally speaking, if someone has low levels of inositol, the challenge most likely lies in their ability to absorb and convert the biological compound, rather than a lack of it in their diet.

Myo-inositol is also produced by healthy, thriving gut microbiota. In fact, gut health plays a significant role in fertility and overall health.

Learn about supplements that play key roles in fertility.* Check out our guide.

How Does Myo-Inositol Help with Egg Quality?*

The quality of the ovum, or egg, plays a vital role in fertility. Myo-inositol has shown the potential to improve fertility in the following ways:*

  • May improve the oogenesis process*
  • May stabilize the cytoskeleton of the egg*
  • May stabilize genetic material within the egg*
  • May improve insulin sensitivity*

Myo-Inositol & Oogenesis

The oogenesis process refers to the development and maturation of ova in the ovarian cycle. Each egg is grown in stages, with the cycle ending in ovulation. In addition to overall cellular enhancement, Myo-inositol has been shown to support follicular maturity.*[1] This results in the ovaries of women taking Myo-inositol releasing more mature, healthy eggs during ovulation, which tend to have a better chance at conception.*[2]

Myo-Inositol & Egg Cytoskeleton

The “cytoskeleton” refers to the structural layers surrounding an egg. Myo-inositol may help keep the structural integrity of all three layers at optimal levels.* There is an extremely intricate process that happens when sperm meets egg, and the integrity of the cytoskeleton has to be perfect for everything to work as it should.

We’ve all heard the people say, ‘it only takes one sperm to fertilize the egg.’ But what happens when multiple sperm enter? The result is polyspermy, which ends in extra mitotic spindles, and the faulty separation of chromosomes, then development ceases. However, in a perfectly healthy egg, there is an ionic shift at the exact moment the first sperm enters the egg. The polarity of the egg changes so that no other sperm can attach. Think of it like a switch that gets flipped, and the security curtain quickly drops to keep everyone else out; closed for business.

Alternatively, in an egg with a healthy cytoskeleton, there is an ionic shift at the exact moment the first sperm enters the egg. The polarity of the egg changes and the cytoskeleton becomes less permeable, ensuring that no other sperm can attach.

With millions of sperm swimming at the egg, if you flip that switch and there is a delayed reaction, the shutter doesn't drop in time, more than one is bound to get inside. Thus, it is critical to have a perfectly stable cytoskeleton with its ionic charge to exist for conception to occur.

Genetic Stabilization

Getting into the yolk of the matter, Myo-inositol has also shown potential to stabilize chromatin within the egg.*[3] Chromatin is the genetic substance inside an egg's nutrient-rich yolk. In short, it's where all of the protein, DNA, and RNA resides, which is needed to combine with DNA from the spermatozoid to produce a healthy fetus. The DNA and RNA must be carefully wound and packaged within the ovum's center to allow it to coalesce with the genetic material from the sperm. This requires an intricate enzymatic process where the DNA correctly unwinds for the genetic union. Myo-inositol may contribute to the stability of the DNA unpacking process upon egg fertilization.*[4]

Insulin Support*

Besides encouraging the development of a healthy ovum, Myo-inositol also has metabolic benefits, particularly related to insulin.* Overall, inflammation tends to increase when insulin is not adequately regulated, and those with optimal insulin sensitivity tend to have lower system-wide inflammation than those struggling with insulin resistance.[5] High levels of inflammation tend to signal stress in the body, whereas optimal fertility occurs when the body feels safe and secure. Myo-inositol helps to regulate insulin, which can ultimately help maintain normal levels of inflammation, and support fertility.*


How Much Myo-Inositol Should I Take?

Before starting a regimen of Myo-inositol, consult with your preferred healthcare practitioner. People consume about one gram of Myo-inositol per day through diet alone, and studies have shown it to be well-tolerated up to 18 grams per day. A current standard recommendation by fertility specialists includes two grams of Myo-inositol twice daily.[6]

How to Take Myo-Inositol

Myo-inositol generally comes in a powder form that can be mixed with cool water and consumed like a tonic. In many cases, it's best to couple Myo-inositol with folic acid. However, be aware that some formulations may include Myo-inositol, D-chiro-inositol, and folic acid.

How Long Does Myo-Inositol Take to Work?

Studies on Myo-inositol supplementation vary in length from a few weeks to 12 months. However, for basic fertility support, there is a trend among natural health practitioners to recommend that aspiring mothers take Myo-inositol for at least two menstrual cycles leading up to attempts at conception.*


There is a multitude of moving parts when it comes to fertility, and no singular dietary supplement is the answer. It's best to take a holistic approach to fertility, starting with your overall health and wellbeing. Still, nutritional compounds like Myo-inositol may help give an edge to conception by supporting the ovum's health at the cellular level.* Be sure to consult with your integrative medical practitioner before making any significant dietary or lifestyle changes to increase fertility.

New call-to-action

[1] "Follicular fluid and serum concentrations of myo-inositol in ...." Accessed 10 Sep. 2020.

[2] "How to Achieve High-Quality Oocytes? The Key ... - Hindawi." Accessed 10 Sep. 2020.

[3] "(PDF) Endocrine and clinical effects of Myo-Inositol ...." 25 Aug. 2020, Accessed 8 Sep. 2020.

[4] "(PDF) Endocrine and clinical effects of Myo-Inositol ...." 25 Aug. 2020, Accessed 8 Sep. 2020.

[5] "Inflammation and Insulin Resistance - NCBI." 29 Nov. 2007, Accessed 10 Sep. 2020.

[6] "Myoinositol as a Safe and Alternative Approach in the ... - NCBI." 23 Aug. 2016, Accessed 8 Sep. 2020.

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.