Soya supplements don’t seem to help with menopause symptoms
Bone loss, menopause symptoms unaffected by soya isoflavone tablets: study
Soy isoflavone tablets do not appear to be associated with a reduction in bone loss or menopausal symptoms in women within the first five years of menopause, according to a report in the August 8 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.
The beginning stages of menopause are often accompanied by symptoms such as rapid bone loss, hot flushes, vaginal dryness and sleep disturbances “Oestrogen therapy can decrease or prevent these symptoms, but most women prefer not to take this because of the associated risks, therefore they look for an alternative. Soya derived products had been proposed to provide comparable benefits to oestrogens but without the risks.
To test the effectiveness of soya, a randomized controlled trial was conducted Study participants received a soya isoflavone dose equivalent to approximately two times the highest intake through food sources in a typical Asian diet to ensure they received an effective dose. A total of 248 women 45 to 60 years of age, within five years of menopause and with a normal bone mineral density, were eligible for the study.
The participants were randomized to the soya isoflavone group, who received 200 mg of soy isoflavone tablets daily. During two years of follow-up, no significant differences were found between women in the soya isoflavone group and placebo group regarding changes in bone mineral density of the spine or the femoral neck. Additionally, the number of menopausal symptoms was comparable between the two groups at baseline and the end of the study, except hot flashes. At the end of the study, 48.4 percent of women in the soy isoflavone group and 31.7 percent of women in the placebo group reported hot flashes.
All in all, a pretty disappointing result for the effectiveness of soya supplements to reduce menopausal symptoms and protect against bone loss.
Arch Intern Med. 2011;171:1363-1369.