Wednesday Bubble: Equol-ity

Posted by on Nov 4, 2009 in herbal medicine, hot flash | 0 comments


Not bursting this one. At least not yet….

Last January, I shared some news on a key component in a type of isoflavone known as Daidzein. The component, S-equol, is produced by some people by the bacteria that lives in their intestines after eating soybeans and soy foods. Japanese women who produce S-equol naturally have been shown to have milder menopausal symptoms.

No wonder I was excited to see more information about S-equol coming out of September’s North American Menopause Society meeting. This time, researchers asked 320 postmenopausal women complaining of at least one hot flash a day to take a 10 mg equol supplement or a placebo tablet for 12 weeks. Menopausal symptoms were evaluated before and after taking the equol supplement, both by questionnaire and by a visual scale.

The findings are encouraging, as it appears that taking a daily equol supplement significantly reduced the frequency of hot flashes by as much as 58%. Women taking the supplement also reported declines in neck and shoulder stiffness. What’s more, no side effects were reported. However, while menopausal symptoms scores improved overall, S-equol did not appear to affect night sweats, mood issues or quality of life.

Obviously, S-equol is not yet available for mass consumption and only time will tell if these benefits can be duplicated in larger groups of women. Still, it’s nice to know that plant-based compounds are slowly proving their worth in the quest to find non-pharmaceuticals to alleviate menopausal symptoms. I’m all for equality when it comes to solutions for menopause and equol has my vote so far!

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  1. The Roundup: November news and tidbits « Flashfree - [...] Wednesday Bubble: Equol-ity. Can the plant-based S-equol alleviate hot flashes? The evidence continues to mount in its favor. [...]…
  2. Wednesday Bubble: Is S-equol the next big thing? « Flashfree - [...] flashes and other symptoms: In 320 women taking 10 mg S-equol daily or placebo for 12 weeks, S-equol supplements…

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