Can broccoli, brussels sprouts, and kale really help your estrogen metabolism? The answer is YES! Diindolylmethane (otherwise known as DIM) is a constituent in these cruciferous vegetables that enables your body to properly break estrogen down into a more friendly form and flush it from your system. It helps to restore your hormone balance.
Once the life of an estrogen molecule is over, it heads to your liver where it is transformed into one of three break-down molecules known as hydroxylation. Your estrogen can become a 2, hydroxyestrogen, 4, hydroxyestrogen, or a 16, hydroxyestrogen. This is important to understand because both the numbers 4 and 16 are not healthy for your body. In fact, these new estrogen molecules (especially the 16, hydroxyestrogen) can act like estrogen even though they started the break-down process AND are implicated in breast and other estrogen sensitive cancers.
In contrast, the 2, hydroxyestrogen appears to have minimal estrogen qualities and is the much safer break-down molecule for your body.
The cruciferous or brassica family contain broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, collards, kale, mustard seeds, mustard greens, turnips and many more. They are a rich dietary source of DIM which promotes the 2, hydroxyestrogen and may be cancer protective.
DIM and your cruciferous vegetables may also help in other estrogen dominant problems such as endometriosis, menopausal complaints, uterine hyperplasia, fibrocystic breasts, and more.
Make sure you include plenty of cruciferous vegetables in your diet and slightly cook, steam, stir-fry or sauté them for greater benefit.
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