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Thursday, January 17, 2013

Plant Estrogens For Hormonal Symptoms



Estrogen floating around one's blood stream will not affect any symptoms at all. The hormone has to bind and then it has to trigger reactions. There are many estrogens and they act through slightly different latch and key mechanisms on the surface of the cells, known alpha or beta receptors for estrogen . Plant estrogens or Isoflavonoids also called Phytoestrogens have a very unique set of physiology. They are in our diet from soy, grains, fruits, and vegetables. These plant estrogens tend bind more tightly to the beta receptors (ERβ). This is a very attractive property as this type of estrogen inhibits breast cell growth as well as the stimulatory effects of ERα. Soy in the diet, in the right quantities can help decrease cardiovascular disease, decrease ostoporotic fractures and even lower breast cancer rates. If you want to consume more soy, think about the Asian Diet they get their soybean from Tofu, Tempeh, Miso. The soyfood is not metabolized the same by all of us. Soy plant estrogens are comprised of a number of products including genistein and daidzein. The Daidzein then gets further metabolized with the aid of the bacteria in our gut , by some of us, in to equol. Any number of bacteria in a healthy bowel can make this conversion work for us, including the following. : clostridia, strep, Enterococcus, lactobacillus, lactococcus, Slackia, Eggerthella. You don’t really know if you can produce equol, we think that. 80% of individuals can produce this in Korea and Japan, but only 25% of Americans (slightly higher % in Latinos and Hispanics). This may have to do with soy exposure in early life. So how you feed your daughters will affect their menopausal health and wellness as it will affect whether they can properly metabolize the plant estrogens they consume. Health Benefits the soy are many, but the health benefits of equol are even greater: including better neurologic health, less cardiovascular disease, stronger bones, less obesity and diabetes, but studies vary in what they say is the degree of effectiveness. So for instance, in some studies hot flashes got better in about 12 weeks, in other studies the effects weren’t as great. It should work with however you get your soy. If soy is not working, you may need to look at other ways to get plant estrogens in your diet: for instance flaxseed. There are even flaxseed extract products on the market and in development.

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