Phytoestrogens: friend or foe? Responsible nutritionist

Estrogen is a female hormone which modulates a specific function for both women and men. Phytoestrogens, although plant-based, functioning like estrogen in humans. When we eat phytoestrogens, our bodies may respond as if it were allocated our own estrogen. Nctlcolor tells to whom are they useful, and what side effects you may have.

Фитоэстрогены: польза или вред? Отвечает нутрициолог

What do phytoestrogens for our body

Menopause
Phytoestrogens significantly reduce hot flashes. Numerous studies find positive effects against hot flashes and other perimenopausal symptoms. Today the additional studies for the use of phytoestrogens during menopause.
Prevention of osteoporosis
Phytoestrogens may help prevent loss of bone mass. It is known that natural estrogen helps to maintain normal bone density. When women age, estrogen levels fall, making them more vulnerable to osteoporosis.
Menstrual cycle
Some women use phytoestrogens as herbal medicines for the relief of menstrual problems. Estrogen levels may drop during certain periods of the menstrual cycle, causing unpleasant symptoms.

The most important sources are:

  • Angelica
  • broccoli
  • carrots
  • evening primrose
  • legumes (beans, peas, peanuts)
  • licorice root
  • oranges
  • red clover
  • soy (tofu, tempeh, miso, soy milk)

Side effects

  • changes in hormonal cycles
  • difficulties with lactation
  • increased risk of endometriosis
  • an increased risk of developing uterine fibroids

“Phytoestrogens may have some benefits for your health, but take them with caution. This is especially true for long and high doses. Although they may seem safer than synthetic estrogen, this may not be so. Talk to your doctor before taking herbal supplements or significantly increase phytoestrogens in the products.”