Monday, November 19, 2007

Menopause, Soy Food and Hormone Balance

In an 8 year study, Freeman's group tracked 231 women who were about to enter menopause, none of whom had any history of depression up to the time they enrolled. The Center for Epidemiological Studies of Depression (CED-D) scale was used to assess depressive symptoms during followup. The probability of a high CES-D score (at least 16) was four-fold greater during the menopausal transition than during the premenopausal phase, the report indicates. Similarly, entering menopause was tied to a more than doubled risk of being diagnosed with a depressive disorder.

Soy foods contain several ingredients that may be useful in preventing disease during the time where women lack the protective hormones. Isoflavonoids, such as genistein and daidzein are weak estrogens and may lessen the risk of osteoporosis and heart disease. Protease inhibitors in soy foods may reduce the risk of cancer.
Many women notice early symptoms while still having periods, when the hormone production is declining very gradually. This stage of gradually falling and fluctuating hormone levels is often called the 'climacteric' or the 'change' and often begins in the 4th decade and can last for several years. Because ovarian function fluctuates, women may experience menopause symptoms intermittently. Some women experience an early, or premature menopause following which, symptoms may occur immediately, depending on the cause. Immediate onset of menopause symptoms often follows a surgical menopause. The duration of 'early' symptoms is very variable from a few months to many years and the severity varies between individuals. (see Balance Hormone)

A study at Bowman Gray Medical School showed twenty grams of soy a day decreased hot flashes. Compared to a placebo (sugar pill) group it also lowered both blood pressure and cholesterol. A study at the University of Illinois showed a significant increase in bone density after six months of a high soy diet.

Hormones can affect many vital functions in your body. That's why keeping your hormones in their proper balance is essential to the way you live. Find out about Balance Hormone at

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