Hormones, herbal preparations and nutriceuticals for a better life after the menopause: part II

Climacteric. 2015 Jun;18(3):364-71. doi: 10.3109/13697137.2014.985646. Epub 2015 Feb 10.


Long-term estrogen replacement therapy with estrogen has benefits for many postmenopausal women. However, some women prefer non-steroidal substitution with herbal preparations. The effectivity against vasomotor symptoms has been evidenced for the extracts of pine bark, of linseed and of Lepidium meyenii (Maca), whereas there is controversy about the effectiveness of genistein-rich soy extract. The extracts of cruciferous vegetables such as Broccoli and of linseed induce changes in the metabolism of estrogens, and antioxidants may reverse altered epigenetic DNA methylation, possibly reducing the risk of breast cancer or its recurrence. Indirect evidence from the literature and from clinical trials supports that a nutriceutical composed of plant extracts, low-dose vitamins and minerals may improve the quality of life by delaying certain age-related diseases. On the basis of epidemiologic studies, physiopathological considerations and controlled prospectieve trials, it is suggested that transdermal substitution therapy with estradiol together with nutriceutical food supplementation may increase the number of quality-adjusted life years of postmenopausal women, but complementary, large-scale, prospective trials are still needed.


Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Estradiol / administration & dosage*
  • Estrogen Replacement Therapy
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Phytotherapy*
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Postmenopause*
  • Quality of Life


  • Plant Extracts
  • Estradiol