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Maturitas. 2011 Mar;68(3):256-63. doi: 10.1016/j.maturitas.2010.12.005. Epub 2011 Jan 14.

Effects of herbal and dietary supplements on cognition in menopause: a systematic review.

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  • 1Pharmacology Unit, Faculty of Medical Sciences, University of the West Indies, Trinidad and Tobago.



Many postmenopausal women use herbal remedies and dietary supplements to counteract menopausal symptoms, including the decline in cognitive function. The aim of this systematic review is to evaluate the evidence regarding the efficacy of herbal and dietary supplements on cognition in menopause.


Randomized clinical trials (RCTs) of herbal medicines and dietary supplements were identified using the Medline, EMBASE, AMED, PsycINFO, CINAHL and The Cochrane Library 2010 (Issue 2) electronic databases and by hand searches. Data were independently extracted and evaluated by two reviewers. Risk of bias was assessed by two independent reviewers using the Cochrane Collaboration tool.


Twelve RCTs were included and five of these suggest that isoflavone, soy and Gingko biloba supplementation may improve cognition in postmenopausal women. However, most of the included studies had serious methodological flaws which demand a cautious interpretation of these findings.


The evidence that herbal and dietary supplements might positively affect the cognitive decline during the menopause is not compelling.

Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

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