Estroven has no estrogen in it. Unfortunately, for all of the supplements out there (there are over 800,000 nutritional supplements in the US!), we don’t have adequate clinical data for safety or efficacy, only claims made by the companies, so it is hard to advise our patients on what to use. I usually advise women to go ahead and trial a product: There is likely no harm; we just don’t have great evidence to show benefit.
North American Menopause Society (NAMS) has found no current supplements to have a significant benefit. Here is their statement:
Soy foods and extracts, including s-equol and other derivatives and metabolites, have received a great deal of attention. However, many studies have not used robust designs and have not studied differences in efficacy between those able and not able to convert soy to s-equol (or other derivatives). Only about two-thirds of North American women are able to convert the soy isoflavone daidzein to s-equol.
Multiple studies of therapies such as black cohosh, crinum, dioscorea, dong quai, evening primrose, flaxseed, ginseng and Siberian ginseng, hops, maca, omega-3s, pinebark, pollen extract, puerperia, and vitamin supplementation show that they are all unlikely to alleviate VMS. A Cochrane review noted that there is insufficient evidence for Chinese herbal medicine for VMS as well.155 Other studies show that certain other vitamin and mineral supplements are no more effective than placebo in reducing VMS.
Again, it is likely these over-the-counter products have no significant harm, and they may be helpful. The placebo effect means that about 30 percent of people find some benefit, which is not bad!
Dr. Barb DePree, M.D., has been a gynecologist and women’s health provider for almost 30 years and a menopause care specialist for the past ten.