Confirmed: Flaxseed Contains 'Estrogens' That Regress Cancer


Flaxseed
 has remarkable therapeutic properties, with over 50 potential applications in the prevention and treatment of disease, as documented in the peer-reviewed biomedical literature itself*
Flaxseed's role in breast cancer is one of the more compelling areas of research, considering this is the #1 form of cancer afflicting women today, and that most women still equate "prevention" with subjecting themselves to annual breast screenings involving highly carcinogenic 30 kVp gamma rays -- overlooking entirely the role of diet, as well as avoidable chemical exposures.
Given that flaxseed already has an exceptional nutritional profile, there are a broad range of reasons to incorporate it into the diet, even if only as a nourishing food. The main reason why the public is so enthralled by flaxseed (and rightly so!) is for its relatively high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, and the density of soothing, mucilaginous fiber it contains. Now, an accumulating body of scientific research reveals flaxseed's hitherto secret 'second life' as a medicinal powerhouse, confirming how timelessly true was Hippocrates proclamation that food is also medicine.
In 2005, the journal Clinical Cancer Research published a placebo-controlled study involving patients who received a 25 gram flaxseed-containing muffin over the course of 32 days. After observing a reduction in tumor markers and an increase in programmed cell death (apoptosis) in the flaxseed-treated patients, the authors concluded: "Dietary flaxseed has the potential to reduce tumor growth in patients with breast cancer."
Additional animal research supports flaxseed's role in suppressing human breast cancer. In immunosuppressed mice (thymus removed), flaxseed and an extract of pure secoisolariciresinol diglucoside from flaxseed was capable of suppressing the estrogen-fed (estradiol-17 beta) growth of transplanted human breast cancer tumors. Flaxseed does not just suppress estradiol production, as do blockbuster hormone-suppressive chemotherapy drugs like Arimidex (created by the chemical company which founded Breast Cancer Awareness Month!), but nudges estradiol metabolism into a positive direction by generating a higher ratio of the beneficial metabolite 2-hydroxyestrone versus the more harmful 16-hydroxylestrone.
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Why Flaxseed Oil Is Important for Women

While it can provide an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids for everyone, there are reasons why flaxseed oil is more important for women, especially a popular new kind known as high lignan flaxseed oil.

Flaxseed Oil, Lignans and Estrogens

Lignans are phytoestrogens and are present in many seeds, grains and vegetables, but flax is the richest dietary source. Lignans are metabolized in the digestive tract into enterolactone and enterodiol. These compounds are structurally similar but a lot less potent than estradiol, the most common form of estrogen in women’s bodies.
Excess estradiol has been strongly associated with hormonal cancers like breast cancer and cancers of the reproductive system. These are some of the most commonly occurring cancers to affect women in America, particularly postmenopausal women.
The lignans in flax seeds exert a much weaker estrogenic effect on receptor cells than estradiol. When they arrive at receptor cells before other estrogens, they block them from having potentially negative effects on breast, uterine or cervical tissue. In this sense, lignans are generally considered anti-estrogenic.
Not all flaxseed oil contains useful levels of lignans. If you’re interested in getting the anti-estrogenic effects, along with the plentiful omega-3 fatty acids, then it is important to look for high lignan flaxseed oil with fine flax particles added back into the oil.
Ground flax seeds are an even better source of lignans, but ideally they would be from fresh organic seeds and be produced with cold milling. Flax meal should come in an airtight packet, be refrigerated (or even better kept in the freezer) and, once opened, used relatively quickly to preserve the freshness. It is great in musli in the morning or added to smoothies and shakes.
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New Estrogen Study KEEPS Options Open!

The Kronos Early Estrogen Prevention Study (KEEPS) was a four-year, randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled clinical trial (in other words: reliable, scientific and unbiased) of low-dose oral or transdermal estrogen and progesterone in 727 healthy women aged 42-58 who were within 3 years of the onset of menopause.

There were 3 groups:
  • Group 1 received oral estrogen (given as Premarin®, 0.45 mg/day – a lower dose than the 0.625 mg/day used in the WHI)
  • Group 2 received a transdermal estradiol (given by Climara® patch, 50 µg/day [µg = microgram])
  • Group 3 received a placebo (no hormone)
In women who used either oral or transdermal estrogen, there was excellent relief of symptoms. There was no increase in blood pressure, no effects on atherosclerosis, no increase in breast cancer or uterine cancer, or blood clots associated with stroke and myocardial infarction.

Oral estrogen was associated with an increase in HDL (“good”) cholesterol along with a decrease in LDL (“bad”) cholesterol. However, there was an increase in triglyceride levels.

Transdermal estrogen did not affect cholesterol or triglycerides, and lowered insulin resistance.

The bottom line is it appears to be safe for most newly menopausal women to use hormone therapy. While both oral and transdermal estrogen have minimal risks, there appear to be advantages of transdermal estrogen therapy, particularly if a women is diabetic or at risk for cardiovascular disease.
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New Study Suggests Rx Estrogen Delivery Through The Skin May Show Safety Benefits As Opposed To Oral Delivery

Transdermal delivery of estrogen therapy available by prescription "seems not to alter" the risk of venous thromboembolism (VTE), or blood clotting, in postmenopausal patients when compared to oral delivery, a new study suggests. The study was conducted by researchers at NYU Langone Medical Center and was published in the latest issue of Menopause: The Journal of the North American Menopause Society.

 The team at NYU Langone sought to determine the effects of delivery of estrogen therapy on postmenopausal women. Blood obtained from 84 postmenopausal women was tested for clotting activity before and after administration of oral or transdermal estrogen for a period of eight weeks. Women with borderline clotting issues showed "a significant acceleration" of clotting after oral estrogen therapy, but no significant change after transdermal estrogen therapy.

 "Venous thromboembolic complications or blood clots represent an established risk factor of estrogen therapy, and evidence is now mounting that the route of estrogen administration influences this risk," said researcher Lila Nachtigall, M.D., Director of the Women's Wellness Program at NYU. "These new data on the safety of transdermal HT delivery may prove to be useful information for postmenopausal women deciding whether to take estrogen therapy and whether to take it orally or through the skin."

 The research team studied platelet activity in the study participants' blood. Platelets serve a central role in forming pathological arterial thrombosis that causes myocardial infarction and stroke. The study's authors further concluded that the ability to identify postmenopausal women with an increased risk of arterial thrombosis or clotting before even starting estrogen therapy is an important goal to help physicians determine which women may be at the least risk to benefit from estrogen therapy.

 "The effect of estrogen therapy on cardiovascular risk remains a point of controversy; however, these data suggest that estrogen delivered transdermally may not increase the likelihood of clotting for women who are at borderline risk," said Dr. Nachtigall. "This study supports the emerging data suggesting that oral, not transdermal estrogen may increase the risk of venous thromboembolism in postmenopausal women."
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Hormone patch may not cause blood clot

Women who use hormone patches, rather than oral pills, to alleviate their menopause symptoms are not at an increased risk of developing blood clots in veins.

While hormone therapy remains the most effective technique for easing menopausal hot flashes, many experts, concerned about the risks associated with the use of HRT, urge women to use the compound at the lowest dose and for the shortest time possible. 

A large UK study had previously found that hormone pills and high-dose patches increase the risk of developing stroke, whereas the consumption of low-dose HRT patches is not associated with such a risk. 

Women using estrogen-plus-progesterone pills are at a greater risk of developing blood clots, heart attack, stroke and breast cancer than women who are not using HRT, showed a large scale US trial in 2002. 

French researchers followed more than a thousand of women to study the link between using hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and increased risk of developing venous thromboembolism (VTE), characterized by experiencing repeated blood clots in the leg veins or lungs. 

According to the results published in the journal Menopause, hormone patches, on the contrary to pills, do not increase the risk of developing blood clots even in women with a history of previous thromboembolism.
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Bioidentical Hormone Patch Shows Benefit Over Pill
Study Finds No Blood Clot Risk With Hormone Patch 
More evidence hormone patch is safer than pills 

Optimizing the dose of hormone replacement therapy

Abstract

Over the last 5 years we have seen the evolution of several new products and several new regimens for estrogen replacement in menopause. Before this time, the decision surrounding hormone replacement therapy (HRT) mainly focused on whether to take estrogen or not, and if the addition of a progestogen was required. 

However, with new paradigms we now have several options for HRT, with various doses of estrogen ranging from very low doses of oral estrogen (0.3 mg conjugated equine estrogen [CEE], 0.25 mg 17beta-estradiol), transdermal patches which deliver a minimum of 20 microg of 17beta-estradiol per day, or intranasal methods which deliver 100-400 microg of 17beta-estradiol, to the more commonly prescribed doses of 0.625 mg of CEE or 0.5 mg 17beta-estradiol. 

The decision to add a progestogen to the regimen of replacement therapy is well accepted, particularly in a woman who has an intact uterus; however, now the controversy has focused on which progestogen least attenuates the lipid benefits received from the estrogen replacement therapy. 

Estrogen treatment in the postmenopausal woman has several proven benefits. For the woman who has vasomotor symptoms or complaints related to urogenital atrophy, there is little controversy regarding its use. However, a continuing controversial area is that of long-term prevention of osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease. It is in these areas that the decision on the dose and the addition of a progestin to hormone replacement therapy is under review.
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Estrogen deficiency and bone loss: an inflammatory tale

Estrogen plays a fundamental role in skeletal growth and bone homeostasis in both men and women. Although remarkable progress has been made in our understanding of how estrogen deficiency causes bone loss, the mechanisms involved have proven to be complex and multifaceted. 

Although estrogen is established to have direct effects on bone cells, recent animal studies have identified additional unexpected regulatory effects of estrogen centered at the level of the adaptive immune response. Furthermore, a potential role for reactive oxygen species has now been identified in both humans and animals. One major challenge is the integration of a multitude of redundant pathways and cytokines, each apparently capable of playing a relevant role, into a comprehensive model of postmenopausal osteoporosis. 

This Review presents our current understanding of the process of estrogen deficiency–mediated bone destruction and explores some recent findings and hypotheses to explain estrogen action in bone. Due to the inherent difficulties associated with human investigation, many of the lessons learned have been in animal models. Consequently, many of these principles await further validation in humans.
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Estrogen promotes cutaneous wound healing via estrogen receptor β independent of its antiinflammatory activities

ARTICLE:  Post-menopausal women have an increased risk of developing a number of degenerative pathological conditions, linked by the common theme of excessive inflammation. Systemic estrogen replacement (in the form of hormone replacement therapy) is able to accelerate healing of acute cutaneous wounds in elderly females, linked to its potent antiinflammatory activity. 

However, in contrast to many other age-associated pathologies, the detailed mechanisms through which estrogen modulates skin repair, particularly the cell type–specific role of the two estrogen receptors, ERα and ERβ, has yet to be determined. Here, we use pharmacological activation and genetic deletion to investigate the role of both ERα and ERβ in cutaneous tissue repair. Unexpectedly, we report that exogenous estrogen replacement to ovariectomised mice in the absence of ERβ actually delayed wound healing. 

Moreover, healing in epidermal-specific ERβnull mice (K14-cre/ERβL2/L2) largely resembled that in global ERβ null mice. Thus, the beneficial effects of estrogen on skin wound healing are mediated by epidermal ERβ, in marked contrast to most other tissues in the body where ERα is predominant. Surprisingly, agonists to both ERα and ERβ are potently anti-inflammatory during skin repair, indicating clear uncoupling of inflammation and overall efficiency of repair. Thus, estrogen-mediated antiinflammatory activity is not the principal factor in accelerated wound healing.
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Estroven Vs. Premarin

NOTE: I buy Estroven over the counter from Costco. Periodically, I have gotten it with a discount coupon.

ARTICLE: Estroven and Premarin are proven menopausal remedies that treat and minimize symptoms of hormonal imbalance and the physical and emotional fluctuations suffered by women during this change of life. While Premarin has been on the market longer than Estroven, both have been clinically studied for their effectiveness. While Estroven is a natural, mostly herbal remedy that's available over the counter, Premarin is a prescribed drug that has more side effects and risk factors than Estroven.

Estroven is a natural supplement that gently and effectively treats irritability, night sweats, hot flashes and sleep difficulties. If taken before bedtime, its soothing and calming herbal effects help women relax and promotes sound sleep. It also protects the bones and promotes cardiovascular health. Premarin is a hormone replacement drug that treats hot flashes, burning, irritation, vaginal dryness and symptoms of osteoporosis. It also replaces estrogen levels in women whose ovaries have stopped functioning.
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Menopause

This comprehensive article has too much to summarize...
Here is a list of topics


Introduction
Signs and Symptoms
Causes
Risk Factors
Diagnosis
Preventive Care
Treatment
Lifestyle
--- Exercise, Diet, Medications, Bisphosphonates
Nutrition and Dietary Supplements
--- Soy, Flaxseed, Calcium
Herbs
--- Black Cohosh, Red Clover, Asian Ginseng
Acupuncture
Homeopathy
Mind-Body Medicine

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Ultra-low dose estrogen patch improves bone, appears safe for the uterus

Researchers at the University of California at San Francisco tested whether an ultra-low dose of estrogen would work in older postmenopausal women, who need less circulating estrogen to protect their bones than younger postmenopausal women do. For two years, more than 400 healthy women ages 60–80 wore a transdermal patch containing either a placebo or 17 beta-estradiol (an estrogen preparation different from Premarin) released at the rate of 0.014 mg per day — about one-quarter the standard dose. Bone mineral density (BMD) was measured and endometrial biopsies were taken during the study period. Both groups received calcium and vitamin D supplements.

The results were reported in the September 2004 issue of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Blood levels of estradiol nearly doubled in the treated women and were unchanged in the placebo group. BMD at the lumbar spine increased fourfold in the women taking estradiol, compared with those taking a placebo. Hip BMD increased in the estradiol group and decreased in the placebo group; markers of bone turnover (the rate at which bone breaks down and builds up) were also better for women taking estradiol. After two years, one woman in the estradiol group developed abnormal endometrial cell growth (endometrial hyperplasia), which cleared up after short-term treatment with a progestin.

 The finding that ultra-low dose estradiol without a progestin improves bone density and is relatively safe in older postmenopausal women may be good news for women who can’t tolerate other osteoporosis drugs, such as bisphosphonates, which can cause digestive upset.
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Flaxseed and flaxseed oil - Mayo Clinic

Flaxseed and its derivative flaxseed oil/linseed oil are rich sources of the essential fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid, which is a biologic precursor to omega-3 fatty acids such as eicosapentaenoic acid. Although omega-3 fatty acids have been associated with improved cardiovascular outcomes, evidence from human trials is mixed regarding the efficacy of flaxseed products for coronary artery disease or hyperlipidemia.
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Flaxseed

Flaxseed is the seed from the plant Linum usitatissimum. The seed or the seed oil is used to make medicine. The information on this page concerns medicine made from the SEED only. There is a separate listing for flaxseed OIL.

People use flaxseed for many conditions related to the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, including ongoing constipation, colon damage due to overuse of laxatives, diarrhea, inflammation of the lining of the large intestine (diverticulitis), irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or irritable colon, sores in the lining of the large intestine (ulcerative colitis), inflammation of the lining of the stomach (gastritis), and inflammation of the small intestine (enteritis).

Flaxseed is also used for disorders of the heart and blood vessels, including high cholesterol, “hardening of the arteries” (atherosclerosis), high blood pressure (hypertension), and coronary artery disease.

Flaxseed is also used for acne, attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), kidney problems in people with a disease called systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), symptoms of menopause, and breast pain. It is also used for diabetes, obesity and weight loss, HIV/AIDS, depression, bladder infections, malaria, and rheumatoid arthritis.

Some people use flaxseed to lower their risk of getting weak bones (osteoporosis) and to protect against breast cancer, lung cancer, colon cancer, and prostate cancer.
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Flaxseed Oil and Brain Health

Omega-3 fatty acids found in flaxseed and fish is good for maintaining brain health as about 60 percent of the brain consists of lipids (fats) which make up the lining, or cell membrane, of every brain cell. The types of fats present in the brain influence its structure and function. How well your mind works depends, in the long run, on what you eat.

Flaxseed Oil, Heart health, and Blood Pressure
Flaxseed has recently gained attention in the area of cardiovascular disease primarily because it is the richest known source of both alpha-linolenic acid ( ALA) and the phytoestrogen, lignans, as well as being a good source of soluble fiber. Human studies have shown that flaxseed can modestly reduce serum total and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol concentrations, reduce postprandial glucose absorption, decrease some markers of inflammation, and raise serum levels of the omega-3 fatty acids, ALA and eicosapentaenoic acid. In a human clinical conducted at Harokopio University, Athens, Greece, supplementation with flaxseed oil resulted in significantly lower systolic and diastolic blood pressure levels compared with linoleic acid.
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Flaxseeds

The warm, earthy and subtly nutty flavor of flaxseeds combined with an abundance of omega-3 fatty acids makes them an increasingly popular addition to the diets of many a health conscious consumer. Whole and ground flaxseeds, as well as flaxseed oil, are available throughout the year.

Flaxseeds are slightly larger than sesame seeds and have a hard shell that is smooth and shiny. Their color ranges from deep amber to reddish brown depending upon whether the flax is of the golden or brown variety. While whole flaxseeds feature a soft crunch, the nutrients in ground seeds are more easily absorbed. 
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Flax and Heart Disease

The evidence that flax protects against heart disease is clear-cut. Experimental studies in laboratory animals and humans suggest that the omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid (found in high amounts in flax) may reduce the risk of arrhythmia. Thus, researchers from the Department of Nutrition, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, prospectively studied the association between dietary intake of alpha-linolenic acid and risk of fatal heart disease among 76,283 women without previously diagnosed heart disease.* During 10 years of follow-up, they documented 232 cases of fatal heart disease and 597 cases of nonfatal heart attacks. After adjusting for standard heart disease risk factors, a higher intake of alpha-linolenic acid was associated with a lower relative risk of fatal heart disease. 

There was a 45 percent reduction of such incidences among women with the highest intakes of alpha-linolenic acid. For nonfatal heart attacks, there was a modest trend toward reduced risk. The researchers concluded, "A higher intake of alpha-linolenic acid is protective against fatal IHD [heart disease]. Higher consumption of foods such as oil-based salad dressing that provide polyunsaturated fats, including alpha-linolenic acid, may reduce the risk of fatal IHD [heart disease]." 

Meanwhile, researchers from the Department of Human Biology and Nutritional Sciences, University of Guelph, Canada, performed a placebo-controlled, double-blind trial and found that omega-3 fatty acids can benefit women receiving and not receiving hormone replacement therapy. Use of omega-3 fatty does so by reducing the concentration of clot-forming blood lipids called triacylglycerols (i.e., triglycerides). In this study, women were given fish oil capsules providing 2.4 grams of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) plus 1.6 grams of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) daily, or placebo. 

Supplementation with the fish oil capsules was associated with 26 percent lower serum triglyceride concentrations and highly improved ratio of triglycerides to beneficial high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol. "These results show that supplementation with a fish-oil derived concentrate can favorably influence selected cardiovascular disease risk factors, particularly by achieving marked reductions in serum triacylglycerol concentrations and triacylglycerol:HDL cholesterol in postmenopausal women receiving and not receiving HRT," say the researchers. "This approach could potentially reduce the risk of coronary heart disease by 27% in postmenopausal women." 
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FLAXSEED OVERVIEW - How does it work?

Flaxseed is a good source of dietary fiber and omega-3 fatty acids. The fiber in flaxseed is found primarily in the seed coat. Researchers believe this fiber binds with cholesterol in the intestine and prevents it from being absorbed. Flaxseed also seems to make platelets, the blood cells involved in clotting, less sticky. Overall, flaxseed’s effects on cholesterol and blood clotting may lower the risk of “hardening of the arteries” (atherosclerosis).

Flaxseed is sometimes tried for cancer because it is broken down by the body into chemicals called “lignans.” Lignans are similar to the female hormone estrogen - so similar, in fact, that they compete with estrogen for a part in certain chemical reactions. As a result, natural estrogens seem to become less powerful in the body. Some researchers believe that lignans may be able to slow down the progress of certain breast cancers and other types of cancers that need estrogen to thrive.
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Can Flaxseed increase Estrogen levels?

ARTICLE: When a woman approaches menopause, her hormonal levels fluctuate in preparation for the end of her childbearing years. During this time, many women experience hot flashes, night sweats, moodiness or other symptoms associated with menopause. Hormone replacement therapy, or HRT, is the conventional method for replacing depleted estrogen and progesterone levels, but it is not without risk. Some women turn to natural plant forms of estrogen, such as those found in flaxseed, to reduce the unwanted symptoms of menopause.
Flaxseeds also contain lignans, which are mild plant forms of estrogen known as phytoestrogens.

Read more: http://www.livestrong.com/article/532654-can-flaxseed-increase-estrogen-levels/#ixzz1xUkndNxZ

FLAXSEED: Find a Vitamin or Supplement

Flaxseed is a good source of dietary fiber and omega-3 fatty acids. The fiber in flaxseed is found primarily in the seed coat. Researchers believe this fiber binds with cholesterol in the intestine and prevents it from being absorbed. Flaxseed also seems to make platelets, the blood cells involved in clotting, less sticky. Overall, flaxseed’s effects on cholesterol and blood clotting may lower the risk of “hardening of the arteries” (atherosclerosis).

Flaxseed is sometimes tried for cancer because it is broken down by the body into chemicals called “lignans.” Lignans are similar to the female hormone estrogen - so similar, in fact, that they compete with estrogen for a part in certain chemical reactions. As a result, natural estrogens seem to become less powerful in the body. Some researchers believe that lignans may be able to slow down the progress of certain breast cancers and other types of cancers that need estrogen to thrive.

For systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), flaxseed is thought to improve kidney function by decreasing the thickness of blood, reducing cholesterol levels, and reducing swelling.http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-991-FLAXSEED.aspx?activeIngredientId=991&activeIngredientName=FLAXSEED

What's New and Beneficial About Flaxseeds

Most plant foods contain at least small amounts of phytonutrients called lignans. Lignans are unique fiber-related polyphenols that provide us with antioxidant benefits, fiber-like benefits, and also act as phytoestrogens. Among all commonly eaten foods, researchers now rank flaxseeds as the #1 source of lignans in human diets. Flaxseeds contain about 7 times as many lignans as the closest runner-up food (sesame seeds). They contain about 338 times as many lignans as sunflower seeds, 475 times as many as cashew nuts, and 3,200 times as many lignans as peanuts.
http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=81

The Role of Flaxseed Oil in Preventing Breast Cancer

NATURES ANSWER TO BREAST CANCER 
The National Cancer Institute has begun to focus on diet as a preventative measure to avoid certain cancers. It has been found that certain fruits, vegetables, and grains possess potent cancer fighting and protective compounds known as phytonutrients (naturally occurring and nontoxic plant chemicals). Perhaps the most powerful phytonutrient plant food discovered to date is flaxseed. This ancient grain contains a phytonutrIent called fignan that once ingested is converted to compounds that compete with estrogen for binding sites on estrogen receptors. The net result is a flushing of excess estrogen (linked to high incidence of colon and breast cancer) from the body. Ironically, lignans may someday replace the need for estrogen therapy in postmenopausal women due to the fact that they resemble estrogen on the receptor site, but without the potential risk!
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on estrogen administration

I've read a lot, but I am NOT an expert. I will summarize what I learned from various articles. I recommend reading source articles, many of which I posted elsewhere. More articles and research are often released as more is learned. Of course, I recommend reviewing your personal medical and hormonal requirements with your endocrinologist or primary medical provider.

Blood clots are caused by first-pass through the liver as estrogen is released from PILLS. The odds of clots is dependent on dosage. So methods of administration that introduce an impact from estrogen assimilation would have the greatest influence on the occurrence of blood clots. Methods that introduce initially higher dosages are pills, and shots although shots are mixed with substances designed to graduate assimilation of estrogen. Some dissolve pills under their tongue (sublingrual) to absorb estrogen directly into the blood stream to eliminate the "first-pass" through the liver. 

Estrogen must compete with testosterone for access to receptors. Thus transgender folks take medication to mitigate the effect of testosterone so they may take a lower dosage of estrogen. This a standard treatment. Another handling is to eliminate the testicles so the dosage of estrogen can be lower while obtaining the same effect. With regard to hormones, the person is then similar to a post-menopausal genetic female.

Recent studies show that introduction of estrogen via skin patches provides gradual absorption into the blood stream of course bypassing the "first-pass" effect on the liver. So it is not surprising that the incidence of blood clots is very low, negligible, or non-existent depending on the sturdy.

For a post-op transgender person the implication is clear. The patch bypasses the "first-pass" effect and introduces estrogen at a more gradual rate. However they are more expensive than pills. 

Male To Female Breast Development - Hormone Therapy and Augmentation

Breast development is without question an exciting part of transition. I feel fairly comfortable saying that most trans women look forward to having their own real breasts but need to stress (as I try to always do) the need to have realistic expectations.

The first thing to know is that breast development varies a great deal from person to person. Also while both age and genetics play a big role in how big they will get, generally speaking trans women can expect to be smaller then their closest female relatives (I was told a cup size smaller).

Besides the actual physical size of the breast, perception must be taken into consideration as well. The fact that the rib cage for the average anatomical male after puberty is bigger then it is for females means if you visually compare the two people with similar height, weight and bra size; one cissexual and one transsexual, the cissexual woman's breasts will generally appear larger.
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WHAT FOODS STIMULATE BREAST GROWTH?


When consumed in large amounts, some plant-based foods and animal products may contribute to the growth of breast cells. In theory, these estrogenic foods stimulate breast growth by triggering a hormone response similar to estrogen, a key compound involved in female fertility, pregnancy and lactation. Before using a specialized diet to improve your breast growth, understand that no clinical trials have evaluated the long-term safety of an estrogenic diet. Consult your health care provider before eating a high-estrogen diet if you have a personal or family history of breast cancer.
According to Medline Plus, a service of the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), soy is an excellent source of isoflavones. These phytoestrogens, which include the popular menopause remedy genistein, appear to influence estrogen levels within the human body. NIH acknowledges the theoretical use of soy as a breast enhancer, but no clinical studies have evaluated its efficacy. Excellent food sources of soy include tofu, tempeh, soy milk, soy crisps and edamame.


Renowned lactation consultant Kelly Bonyata notes that fennel, a sweet-tasting vegetable related to dill, has been used for centuries as a galactogogue. Breastfeeding mothers report that it can increase breast size and milk production. Like soy, fennel is a good source of natural compounds similar to estrogen. Consider using fennel seed as a spice or incorporating fennel root into your everyday meals.
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Benefits of Soy Protein for Breast Growth

Protein from legumes, such as beans, provides a healthy alternative to animal protein. Soybeans are commonly grown legumes that are a staple in the Asian diet, and are becoming more common in Western kitchens. Soybeans are processed into milk, tofu, meat substitutes and flour. Soybeans are high in vitamins and fiber, as well as protein. Soybeans contain a plant-derived estrogen called phytoestrogen. Estrogen is a female hormone necessary for breast development; increasing soy consumption is shown to enhance breast growth.

Soy foods are low in fat and cholesterol, and high in fiber, Vitamin B and calcium. The Food and Drug Administration states that eating soy foods may lower the risk of heart disease by lowering cholesterol. Soy foods are also a great source of Omega 3 fatty acids. Omega 3, according to studies from the 1980s, is thought to prevent heart disease and reduce the risk of Alzheimer's disease. Soy milk contains phytoestrogen, which mimics the female sex hormone estrogen. Scientists believe that the estrogen in soy foods may help prevent breast cancer and osteoporosis and relieve symptoms of menopause. Estrogen is necessary for the development of female sex characteristics and the reproductive system, including breast development.

Estrogen from soy, if taken in high doses, works in a manner similar to human estrogen; it will increase breast size. A study published by Cornell University in 2001 notes that there was measurable growth in the milk ducts of women who took soy supplements. More tests are needed to validate the benefits of soy in breast growth.
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Phytoestrogens

Phytoestrogens are plant-derived xenoestrogens functioning as the primary female sex hormone (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 withestradiol (17-β-estradiol), have the ability to cause estrogenic or/and antiestrogenic effects.[1] It has been proposed that plants use the phytoestrogens as part of their natural defence against the overpopulation of the herbivore animals by controlling the male fertility.

The similarities, at molecular level, of 
estrogens and phytoestrogens allow them to mildly mimic and sometimes act as antagonists of estrogen.[1] Phytoestrogens were first observed in 1926,[1][4] but it was unknown if they could have any effect in human or animal metabolism. In the 1940s it was noticed for the first time that red clover (a phytoestrogens-rich plant) pastures had effects on the fecundity of grazing sheep. Researchers are exploring the nutritional role of these substances in the regulation of cholesterol, and the maintenance of proper bone density post-menopause. Evidence is accruing that phytoestrogens may have protective action against diverse health disorders, such as prostatebreast,bowel, and other cancerscardiovascular disease, brain function disorders andosteoporosis, though there is no evidence to support their use in alleviating the symptoms of menopause.

Entrepreneur Says Generic Version of Propecia Made Him Into a Woman

William McKee suffered from male-pattern baldness when he ordered a generic version of Propecia in 2008 from India. He took the drug, which also contained the most active ingredient for Propecia called finasteride, for over nine months. 

The impact on his baldness was minimal, but McKee suffered from radical side effects. McKee said that the changes, which began with new breasts forming on his previously gym-sculpted body, continued with the transformation of his shoulders and hips. According to McKee – who now goes by Mandi – she is now transgender. 

She says on her blog, "I am transgender, unemployed, broke, behind on rent, and on the verge of becoming homeless (again). I have received little to no medical help from doctors, as I lost my health insurance, was turned down by Medicaid, and most doctors still don’t know the first thing about 'post-finasteride syndrome'. 

On top of that a new study came out last week which shows that men affected by this 'post-finasteride syndrome' may be facing not only permanent sexual dysfunction, but permanent cognitive impairment/'brain fog' as well." Though Merck, the makers of Propecia, deny that any long-lasting side effects exist as a result of their medication, several studies show differently. (Those, however, do have their own conflicts; one study's entire group of participants was found on a popular website that provides men a means to vent about their problems as a result of finasteride. The men were also not tested for hormone levels.) 

Unfortunately for McKee, she cannot take part in any of the mass lawsuits currently being filed against the drug manufacturer, because her problems are as a result of a generic drug. Her frustration is documented on her blog, where he says that he plans to sue Merck for $1 billion. Finasteride works by preventing the conversion of testosterone into dihydrotestosterone, the hormone implicated in hair loss.
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Mandi McKee my story

SYMPTOMS OF THE POST-FINASTERIDE SYNDROME

androgen deprivation therapy Managing side effects

Hormone Therapy, The Pros And Cons - An Updated Report

An updated report on the benefits and harms of HRT (hormone replacement therapy) has found that estrogen plus progestin and estrogen alone reduce fracture risk but raise the risk of stroke, gallbladder disease, urinary incontinence and thromboembolism events. Estrogen plus progestin raise the chances of developing breast cancer and probably dementia, while estrogen alone decreases breast cancer risk.

This review, written by researchers from Oregon Health & Science University, and Providence Cancer Center, and published inAnnals of Internal Medicine, was conducted to help USPSTF (US Preventive Services Task Force) issue its new recommendations on hormone therapy.

As background information, the researchers explained that menopausal hormone therapy to prevent chronic diseases is not recommended today, because of the high risk of serious adverse events.

The researchers set out to update evidence regarding how effective hormone therapy is in reducing the risk of developing chronic conditions, as well as studying the impact and severity of adverse effects. They also wanted to see what the outcomes might be among females in different subgroups. 

They studied a short-list of 9 trials which met their inclusion criteria - the trials were assessed as being of fair-quality.

Below are some of the findings from this study:
  • Estrogen plus progestin therapy
    reduced fractures (46 fewer per 10,000 woman-years)
    increased invasive breast cancer (8 more per 10,000 woman-years)
    increased deep venous thrombosis (12 more per 10,000 woman-years)
    increased dementia (22 more per 10,000 woman-years)
    increased gallbladder disease (20 more per 10,000 woman-years)
    increased lung cancer death (5 more per 10,000 woman-years)
    increased pulmonary embolism (9 more per 10,000 woman-years)
    increased stroke (9 more per 10,000 woman-years)
    increased urinary incontinence (872 more per 10,000 woman-years)

  • Estrogen-only therapy
    reduced fractures (56 fewer per 10,000 woman-years)
    reduced invasive breast cancer incidence (8 fewer per 10,000 woman-years)
    reduced death (2 fewer per 10,000 woman-years)
    increased stroke (11 more per 10,000 woman-years)
    increased deep venous thrombosis (7 more per 10,000 woman-years)
    increased gallbladder disease (33 more per 10,000 woman-years)
    increased urinary incontinence (1271 more per 10,000 woman-years)
There were no consistent differences in outcomes related to comorbid conditions or age.

The study did not look into compliance (adherence), some outcome risks, and some other regimens.

In an abstract in the same journal, the authors concluded:
"Estrogen plus progestin and estrogen alone decreased risk for fractures but increased risk for stroke, thromboembolic events, gallbladder disease, and urinary incontinence. Estrogen plus progestin increased risk for breast cancer and probable dementia, whereas estrogen alone decreased risk for breast cancer. "
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on anti-androgens

We toss around this "anti androgen" term without distinguishing from the different ways these products work. They are not all the same.

The most important thing that they do is they reduce masculinization. The male pattern hair loss, the "gorilla" body hair, and all those other factors that we dislike are all the result of DHT. Not testosterone as is commonly thought. It is the nasty metabolite DHT that is the real culprit.

If we take bicalutamide, a successor drug to flutamide, we can initiate transition while still having a high level of testosterone. This drug blocks the receptors. The testosterone and the DHT has no place to go so it builds to the point where aromatase converts it to estradiol.

This drug absolutely stops masculinization and even causes feminization. But at the same time lab tests will show there is plenty of testosterone circulating.

Progestins, including cyproterone acetate (Androcur) and medroxyprogesterone caproate (Provera) reduce testosterone production. Yet they do nothing to stop the effects of DHT. What small amount of testosterone that remains, and it generally is insignificant, can convert to DHT and the effects can continue.

A third way is to take drugs that reduce the conversion of testosterone to DHT. Finasteride is an economical product for this purpose. Dutasteride is a newer and more effective one. It has a higher cost but it can be used in households where women of child bearing age are present. Finasteride tablets if broken do present a risk of birth defect as the product would block masculinization in the fetus. That's a risk that many of us would not wish on any person.

We can block the receptors, we can reduce production of testosterone, we can reduce conversion to DHT and we can do a combination of all of these. They're all anti androgen techniques because they oppose the *effects* of androgens. 

It's important to understand that there is not just one anti androgen product or method.
-Sue

New Study Suggests Rx Estrogen Delivery Through The Skin May Show Safety Benefits As Opposed To Oral Delivery

"Venous thromboembolic complications or blood clots represent an established risk factor of estrogen therapy, and evidence is now mounting that the route of estrogen administration influences this risk," said researcher Lila Nachtigall, M.D., Director of the Women's Wellness Program at NYU. "These new data on the safety of transdermal HT delivery may prove to be useful information for postmenopausal women deciding whether to take estrogen therapy and whether to take it orally or through the skin." 

The research team studied platelet activity in the study participants' blood. Platelets serve a central role in forming pathological arterial thrombosis that causes myocardial infarction and stroke. The study's authors further concluded that the ability to identify postmenopausal women with an increased risk of arterial thrombosis or clotting before even starting estrogen therapy is an important goal to help physicians determine which women may be at the least risk to benefit from estrogen therapy. 

 "The effect of estrogen therapy on cardiovascular risk remains a point of controversy; however, these data suggest that estrogen delivered transdermally may not increase the likelihood of clotting for women who are at borderline risk," said Dr. Nachtigall. "This study supports the emerging data suggesting that oral, not transdermal estrogen may increase the risk of venous thromboembolism in postmenopausal women."
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Estrogen

The three major naturally occurring estrogens in women are estrone (E1), estradiol (E2), and estriol (E3). Estradiol is the predominant estrogen during reproductive years both in terms of absolute serum levels as well as in terms of estrogenic activity. During menopause, estrone is the predominant circulating estrogen and during pregnancy estriol is the predominant circulating estrogen in terms of serum levels. Though estriol is the most plentiful of the three estrogens it is also the weakest, whereas estradiol is the strongest with a potency of approximately 80x that of estriol.

 Thus, estradiol is the most important estrogen in non-pregnant females who are between the menarche and menopausestages of life. However, during pregnancy this role shifts to estriol, and in postmenopausal women estrone becomes the primary form of estrogen in the body. Another type of estrogen called estetrol (E4) is produced only during pregnancy. All of the different forms of estrogen are synthesized from androgens, specifically testosterone and androstenedione, by the enzyme aromatase.
Premarin, a commonly prescribed estrogenic drug produced from the urine of pregnant mares, contains the steroidal estrogens equilin and equilenin. There are estradiol skin patches such as Estraderm (the original brand, introduced in the late 1980s) that offer a completely natural alternative.
Estrogen - Wikipedia