woman and man running

Inositol: What Is It and Why Is Everyone Talking About It?

Inositol - have you heard of it? It's the buzzword on everyone's lips right now and for many good reasons. Can you guess what it does? You don’t have to; we’re going to take you through what inositol is and why it might be the missing star of your supplement stack.

If you’re an avid podcast listener, you’ve probably heard a bit about Inositol. This natural supplement has been discussed for its potential ability to help alleviate symptoms associated with PCOS, as well as its potential benefits for improving mental health and reducing stress.

As more and more people discover the benefits of inositol, the demand for it has only grown. So, if you’re asking yourself where I can buy inositol in Australia, well, we’ve got you covered at ASN. But first, let’s discuss why you might need this supplement.

With a growing body of research supporting its benefits, there's never been a better time to give inositol a try.

What Is Inositol?

Inositol may be a term that might not ring a bell to most. You may have heard of it referred to as vitamin B8, but inositol is actually not a vitamin. You may be surprised to hear this, but inositol is actually a type of sugar that plays numerous important functions in the body.

Inositol naturally occurs in foods like fruits, beans, grains, and nuts, and it can play a vital role in various cellular processes, including insulin function, metabolic health, mental health and PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome). The supplement form of inositol can be derived from two forms: myo-inositol and D-chiro-inositol (Meixner, M., 2023).

Though both types offer health benefits, it’s hard to pinpoint a clear difference, as both forms are almost identical on a molecular level. They differ slightly, however, with both forms playing a different role in signalling insulin and other psychological pathways. Myo-inositol, which is perhaps the more common form, aids the body’s use of glucose, while D-chiro inositol is involved in glycogen synthesis and storage (Intimate Rose., n.d.).


What Does Inositol Do?

This versatile nutrient offers a range of benefits that can help you feel your best, both physically and mentally. Inositol has been linked with mental health, PCOS, insulin sensitivity, and more. Let’s take a look at some of the key reasons inositol can support your health and wellness goals.

Inositol and Insulin Sensitivity

Inositol has gained popularity in recent years for its potential benefits in promoting insulin sensitivity and glucose metabolism. Insulin is important for controlling blood sugar levels in your body, and inositol has been linked with producing molecules that play a role in insulin’s action in your cells. Inositol can improve the body’s sensitivity to insulin, with one six-month study on postmenopausal women with metabolic syndrome showing that a 4g dose of inositol per day helped to improve insulin sensitivity, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels (Tinsley, G., 2023).

When taken in conjunction with berberine, inositol has been found to be particularly effective in maintaining healthy blood glucose levels. Both inositol and berberine offer their own unique benefits that support weight management and insulin sensitivity. Berberine is a bioactive compound sourced from various plants, and it is also a popular dietary supplement for its potential benefits in diabetes, cholesterol levels, and more. The reason berberine can be effective when combined with inositol is because berberine is an insulin sensitiser. This means that it can cause low blood sugar, especially when combined with other insulin-lowering compounds like inositol. As with any supplements, it is always important to consult a GP before combining different compounds (Grassi, A., 2023).

To learn more about berberine, check out our blog on  The Benefits of Taking Berberine .

Inositol and PCOS

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, commonly known as PCOS, is a hormonal disorder that affects women of reproductive age. In Australia alone, it is estimated that between 8-13% of women suffer from this condition, with 20% of Indigenous women affected (Swannell, C., n.d.).

While the exact cause of PCOS is not known, studies have shown that inositol, specifically myo-inositol, can help regulate the hormones involved in this disorder. Many women are buying inositol supplements to manage their menstrual cycles and potentially alleviate some of the symptoms associated with PCOS. If you’re experiencing menstrual cycles or have cycles with no ovulation, myo-inositol may help to improve the regularity of your menstrual cycle. For women supplementing with inositol, the recommended dosage of myo-inositol is 4,000 mg per day, taken in two doses (Sullivan, T., 2024).

Because PCOS is hormone-driven, supplementing with inositol can assist with weight loss, potentially due to its beneficial effects on insulin sensitivity. Understandably, inositol is not a miracle weight loss cure. Weight loss is still determined through diet, exercise, and general health, but myo-inositol has been linked to reduced BMI (Sullivan, T., 2024).

While it is important to note that inositol is not a cure for PCOS and should not be relied on as such, it is an option for those seeking natural ways to manage their condition. If you are considering inositol supplements, it's essential to research reputable sources and speak with your healthcare provider.

Inositol and Anxiety

Inositol has garnered attention for its potential to alleviate mild anxiety and act as a promising treatment for depression and panic disorder. While only a small number of studies have been conducted on the effectiveness of inositol for studies, the research suggests that inositol may help to alleviate symptoms of anxiety by affecting serotonin. Inositol impacts the processes that make neurotransmitters like serotonin, which can play a role in your behaviour and mood (Tinsley, G., 2023).

In addition to its potential anxiety-supporting benefits, inositol has also been found to aid in the treatment of depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). With its potential to improve mental health and well-being, it's no wonder that more and more people are turning to inositol as a natural alternative to traditional medications.

Inositol and Sleep

While there is currently only anecdotal research available on the subject, the potential benefits of inositol for sleep are definitely worth exploring. Inositol, specifically myo inositol, has been studied for its potential to improve various aspects of mental health, including anxiety and depression. Since these conditions are often linked to sleep problems, it stands to reason that inositol may have an impact on sleep as well. If you’re a regular listener of Andrew Huberman’s The Huberman Podcast, you may recall that inositol is part of Dr. Huberman’s sleep cocktail (Inositol Australia., n.d.).

One study found that myo-inositol supplementation can improve global sleep quality, subjective sleep quality, and sleep duration during pregnancy. While more research is needed to fully understand the relationship between inositol and sleep, these early findings are certainly promising (Mashayekh-Amiri, S et al., 2022).

The Bottom Line

Inositol is a natural compound that has shown promising benefits in improving various health conditions. Its ability to help regulate insulin levels, reduce anxiety and depression, and support PCOS in women has made it a popular supplement in 2024.

When it comes to purchasing inositol, it can be overwhelming to navigate through the various options available. The first step is to determine your specific needs, such as whether you are looking for myo-inositol or another form. Additionally, it's important to consider the source and quality of the inositol you are purchasing. Be sure to do your research before making a purchase.

To learn more about the benefits and uses of inositol, berberine, and other popular supplements, check out our Education Hub for more articles on the topic. Alternatively, you can visit our knowledgeable team in-store or reach out online for more help!


Meixner, M. (March 2023). ‘Inositol: Benefits, Side Effects and Dosage’. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/inositol

Intimate Rose. (n.d). ‘Myo-inositol vs D-chiro Inositol: What’s The Difference?’ https://www.intimaterose.com/blogs/womens-health/myo-inositol-vs-d-chiro-inositol

Tinsley, G. (March 2023). ‘5 Evidence-Based Health Benefits of Inositol’. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/inositol-benefits#TOC_TITLE_HDR_3

Grassi, A. (January 2023). ‘Berberine for PCOS: Benefits and Side Effects’. Very Well Health. https://www.verywellhealth.com/pcos-and-berberine-4136324#:~:text=Since%20berberine%20is%20an%20insulin,like%20inositol%20or%20n%2Dacetylcysteine .

Swannell, C. (n.d.). ‘Australian-led PCOS guideline an international first’. MJA. https://www.mja.com.au/journal/2018/australian-led-pcos-guideline-international-first#:~:text=PCOS%20affects%208%E2%80%9313%25%20of,21%25%20of%20Indigenous%20women%20affected .

Sullivan, T. (March 2024). ‘The benefits of myo-inositol for PCOS’. Fertility Family. https://www.fertilityfamily.co.uk/blog/the-benefits-of-myo-inositol-for-pcos/#:~:text=The%20main%20reason%20myo%2Dinositol,PCOS%2C%20insulin%20resistance%20is%20present .

Inositol Australia. (n.d.). ‘Does Myo Inositol Improve Sleep?’. https://inositol.com.au/sleep/improving-sleep-naturally-with-myo-inositol/

Mashayekh-Amiri, S et al. (September 2022). ‘The impact of myo-inositol supplementation on sleep quality in pregnant women: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study’. PubMed. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32933356/