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Nutrition. 1997 Jun;13(6):535-9.

Effects of diet supplementation with wheat bran on serum estrogen levels in the follicular and luteal phases of the menstrual cycle.

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Division of Nutrition and Endocrinology, American Health Foundation, Valhalla, New York 10595, USA.


There is both epidemiologic and experimental support for the hypothesis that a high-fiber diet can reduce breast cancer risk; this may be due, at least in part, to a reduction in circulating estrogens. This study examined the effects of three levels of wheat bran supplementation (5, 10, and 20 g/d for 2 mo) on the major serum estrogens during both the luteal and follicular phases of the menstrual cycle. The 10- and 20-g supplements, which increased the total dietary fiber intakes to approximately 20 and 32 g/d, respectively, resulted in significant decreases in the luteal serum estrone (P < 0.05 and < 0.02, respectively). The serum estradiol was significantly reduced in the 10-g wheat bran group after 2 mo (P < 0.05); the 20-g supplemented group showed a significant decrease in estradiol at 1 mo (P < 0.02), but not at 2 mo. No changes occurred in the estrone sulfate concentrations. During the follicular phase, the 10-g wheat bran group exhibited a significant reduction in the serum estrone (P < 0.02). Only the serum estrone sulfate showed any reduction with the 20-g supplement, and this just failed to achieve significance (P = 0.07). Serum sex hormone-binding globulin levels were unaffected by wheat bran. When of long duration, these effects may be sufficient to favorably influence breast cancer risk in Western women.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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