One question I’m often asked: Can spearmint tea help you get rid of PCOS symptoms?
As a dietitian specializing in PCOS, I’m out to explore all the ways food and beverage can help you manage PCOS well.
So the short answer is: MAYBE.
As someone living with PCOS, you may experience high androgen levels, like testosterone, that lead to symptoms like hirsutism, hair loss, cystic acne, and irregular periods.
It’s widely spread on social media that spearmint tea has anti-androgenic effects and can help improve androgenic symptoms!
Can it really? Keep reading for all you need to know below.
Let’s explore the research on spearmint tea and PCOS.
First, know that there’s very little research, so the evidence isn’t strong enough to make bold statements about spearmint tea’s effects on PCOS.
Here’s what we do have:
In the latest study, a randomized control trial, 42 volunteers with PCOS were randomized to drink spearmint tea twice per day for 30 days and then a placebo for 30 days. Androgen levels were measured throughout the 30-days, and degree of hirsutism was clinically rated using a special scoring scale (objective) and self-reported by volunteers (subjective).
At the end of the study, free and total testosterone was significantly reduced, as was self-reported hirsutism. However, the objective scoring for hirsutism showed no significant reduction.
Takeaways: The study wasn’t near long enough. Spearmint tea may have some anti-androgenic effects and some people may notice improvements in hirsutism, but anecdotal and subjective evidence isn’t the most reliable.
Bottom line: It doesn’t hurt to try it and see what happens, and at the very least, you may find a new beverage to add more variety!
How to Drink Spearmint Tea
There’s no specific amount known to be the perfect amount of spearmint tea for maximum effects. Again, there’s just not enough studies to determine this.
In the study described above, 2 cups per day of spearmint tea was prescribed for one month. Because of this, I suggest 2 cups per day for at least a month.
Understand it could take longer to see any results in lowering testosterone and androgenic symptoms, like hirsutism.
How to make it:
Steep a spearmint tea bag in hot (just boiled) water for 5-10 minutes.
What is the best spearmint tea for PCOS? There’s no special recommended brand specific for PCOS, and remember that “PCOS Spearmint Tea” is simply a marketing tactic, nothing special.
Search Amazon or find it at your local tea shop.
Additional Ways to Help Lower Testosterone and Manage PCOS Symptoms
If spearmint tea isn’t your thing or doesn’t work for you, no biggie. There are many MORE EFFECTIVE ways to lower your testosterone and manage your PCOS symptoms.
A short list of the basics to improving testosterone and PCOS symptoms:
- Balance your blood sugar + reduce insulin levels: Higher insulin can result in higher testosterone. Eating regular meals throughout the day, pairing protein + fat with carbs, and choosing higher fiber carbs can help keep blood sugar stable and reduce insulin.
- Add strength training and yoga to your exercise routine: Both have been shown to reduce testosterone in those with PCOS.
- Add anti-inflammatory foods, like fish/seafood, nuts and seeds, fruits and veggies, whole grains and starchy veggies, olive oil, and avocado. Check out my meal guide “The Ultimate PCOS-Friendly Meal Guide” for meal ideas + recipes!
- Work with a dietitian and/or doctor to see if a supplement or medication would be a good fit for you. Common supplements prescribed for PCOS include Ovasitol, magnesium, zinc, omega-3, and more. Find quality provider-grade supplements at Fullscript.
The Bottom Line on Spearmint Tea for PCOS
- Spearmint tea MIGHT be helpful for those dealing with high testosterone and androgenic symptoms like hirsutism, but the effect is small and there is little evidence.
- Drinking spearmint tea is a simple thing to try and see if it’s helpful. At the least, it will add variety to what you drink.
- There are many other, and more effective, ways to lower testosterone and manage PCOS. Spearmint tea won’t get you there alone, anyhow.
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