Phytoestrogens are compounds prouced in plants that may act similiar to the estrogen naturally produced in your body. They are much weaker than natural estrogen however they circulate at much higher levels (thousands of times higher) in the blood stream.
Research into the benefits of phytoestrogens has focused on:
- Cancer (breast in particular)
- Heart disease (antioxidant activity)
- Other potential areas of benefit include diabetes and cognitive function.
It has been observed that women in Japan have one of the lowest prevalence's of breast cancer in the world. It has been researched that when Asian women migrate away from home, to America for example, the incidence of breast cancer significantly increases. Hence it has been suggested that environmental factors, especially the diet, play an important role.
There is a marked difference in dietary consumption of phytoestrogens between Japan and the US; the intake of phytoestrogens in Japan is 30 times greater than in the US. The total isoflavone intake of the Japanese population has been documented in 1994 as being between 150 and 200 mg/day. This high consumption of soy isoflavones in Japan has been highlighted to be a major factor in the reduced incidence of breast cancer among the Asian population.
Epidemiological evidence has shown promising results. Dietary intervention studies indicate that soy and linseed have effects in women which may prove beneficial with regards to the risk of breast cancer. For example, soy has been shown to increase the length of the menstrual cycle and/or delay menstruation and to reduce the levels of the sex hormones at various stages of the cycle. Typical levels of soy products used in intervention studies have been 38 g/day of soy protein isolate or 60 g/day of soy protein, providing 45 mg isoflavones per day. These intakes have affected the levels of the sex hormones and therefore potentially contribute to a decrease in breast cancer.
Natural Alternatives for Menopause
Bioidentical Progesterone Cream with Phytoestrogens
Contains both progesterone and phytoestrogens which work together to provide women more effective control of their menopausal symptoms.
Menopause Formula (PhytoBalance)
PhytoBalance contains eight of the most tested and proven herbs that reduces hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, irritability, and depression associated with perimenopause and menopause.