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Copyright 2013 Natural Standard (
January 2011

Herbal Supplement and Breast Cancer Prevention

A recent study suggests that an herbal combination product may help prevent hormone-sensitive breast cancer.

The study included 47 premenopausal women and 49 postmenopausal women who were not taking hormonal contraceptives or supplements. They were randomly assigned to take a dietary supplement (containing HMR lignan, indole-3-carbinol, calcium glucarate, milk thistle, Schisandra chinesis and stinging nettle) or placebo daily for 28 days. Fem Med funded the study and provided the supplement.

By the end of the study, the researchers found that the supplement significantly increased hydroxylation of estrogen, which is associated with a lower risk of hormone-sensitive breast cancer. The results were similar among pre- and postmenopausal women. However, more research is needed to confirm these early findings.

Aside from regular cancer screenings, diet and lifestyle choices may factor into breast cancer risk and management. It is generally recommended that individuals eat healthy and well-balanced diets, maintain healthy body weight, exercise regularly and drink alcohol in moderation (if at all). Many studies are testing the potential benefits of specific foods and diets on breast cancer.

For more information about breast cancer, please visit Natural Standard's Medical Conditions database.


  1. Laidlaw M, Cockerline CA, Sepkovic DW. Effects of A Breast-Health Herbal Formula Supplement on Estrogen Metabolism in Pre- and Post-Menopausal Women not Taking Hormonal Contraceptives or Supplements: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Breast Cancer (Auckl). 2010 Dec 16;4:85-95. View Abstract
  2. Natural Standard: The Authority on Integrative Medicine.
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