Phytoestrogen: Benefits, Risks, and Food Lists

Phytoestrogens are naturally occurring compounds found in plants. They can be found in legumes, fruits, vegetables, and some grains. “Phyto” is a Greek word that means plant. Estrogen is a female hormone responsible for controlling functions in men and women. Phytoestrogens may be found in plants and plant-based food, but they function like animal estrogen in humans.

Your body’s response to consuming phytoestrogen is similar to how it responds when your estrogen is present. This article will discuss the risks and health benefits of phytoestrogens, and foods that contain high amounts of phytoestrogen.

What are phytoestrogens?

Phytoestrogens can be found in Soy foods, such as tofu, tempeh, miso, and soybeans. They are natural components of plants. In most cases, these compounds are usually part of your diet. Estrogen is majorly a female hormone that helps control the menstrual cycle. The hormone is produced by the endocrine system. Estrogen plays a significant role in the growth of pubic hair, armpit hair, and women’s breasts. The hormone stops controlling the menstrual cycle after menopause.

According to studies, the following foods are great sources of phytoestrogens:

  • Legumes
  • Vegetables
  • Fruit
  • Some grains

Since a plant-based food with high amounts of phytoestrogen produces a similar function as estrogen in the body, the compound is also known as dietary estrogens.

You can also rely on phytoestrogen supplements. However, experts advise people to get it from a natural source, because it is more effective.