Phytoestrogens are plant-derived xenoestrogens (see estrogen) not generated within the endocrine system but consumed by eating phytoestrogenic plants. Also called “dietary estrogens”, they are a diverse group of naturally occurring nonsteroidal plant compounds that, because of their structural similarity with estradiol (17-β-estradiol), have the ability to cause estrogenic or/and antiestrogenic effects,by sitting in and blocking receptor sites against estrogen.
What are Fibroids?
Fibroids are the most frequently seen tumors of the female reproductive system. Fibroids, also known as uterine myomas, leiomyomas, or fibromas, are firm, compact tumors that are made of smooth muscle cells and fibrous connective tissue that develop in the uterus. It is estimated that between 20 to 50 percent of women of reproductive age have fibroids, although not all are diagnosed. Some estimates state that up to 30 to 77 percent of women will develop fibroids sometime during their childbearing years, although only about one-third of these fibroids are large enough to be detected by a health care provider during a physical examination.
Studies show that up to 80 percent of women have fibroids in their uterus.
One study found that between 70 to 80 percent of all women will get them by the age of 50. You’re most likely to see them in your 40s and early 50s.
In more than 99 percent of fibroid cases, the tumors are benign (non-cancerous). These tumors are not associated with cancer and do not increase a woman’s risk for uterine cancer. They may range in size, from the size of a pea to the size of a softball or small grapefruit.
What causes fibroids?
While it is not clearly known what causes fibroids, it is believed that each tumor develops from an aberrant muscle cell in the uterus, which multiplies rapidly because of the influence of estrogen.
Fibroids are non-cancerous tumors that grow from the muscle layers of the uterus. They are also known as uterine fibroids, myomas, or fibromyomas.
Fibroids feed upon estrogen and excessive estrogen will allow the fibroid tumors to increase in size as well as worsen the various symptoms of uterine fibroids.
Phytoestrogens and Fibroids
Phytoestrogens is the best natural hormone replacement, a safe alternative to synthetic hormones. Phytoestrogen-rich plants decrease the effects of estrogen levels naturally by blocking the estrogen receptors on the cells in fibroids and other estrogen-sensitive tissues.
Phytoestrogens or plant estrogens are able to bind to the same cell receptors as the estrogen female body system produces. And this help reduce the fibroids when phytoestrogens occupy the “parking places,” estrogen can’t produce effects on cells.
Taking phytoestrogens may decrease the risk of fibroid.