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Expert Pearls

Phytoestrogens - Menopausal symptoms, cholesterol, triglycerides, HDL cholesterol, cancer risk

Phytoestrogens have been used for: menopausal symptoms; lower total and LDL cholesterol, and triglycerides and increase HDL cholesterol; reduce prostate, breast and colon cancer risk. [Med J Australia, August 4, 1997;167:119-120. 28055 (1997)] Summary Interview

Phytoestrogens - Plants

More than 300 plants have been demonstrated to possess estrogenic activity. Phytoestrogens have a steroidal structure and their estrogenic activity is due to hydroxyl groups located on the cyclic rings, with the distance between the hydroxyl groups similar to that of estradiol. There are three main classes of phytoestrogens: isoflavones from legumes (soy has highest level of isoflavones); lignans are found in plants with linseed containing the highest levels of lignan plant precursors; and coumestans. Estrogenically active isoflavones and lignans include daidzein, genistein, equol and matairesinol and secoisolariciresinol, respectively. [Med J Australia, August 4, 1997;167:119-120. 28055 (1997)] Summary Interview
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