Dim The Hormone Helper
DIM is a compound with a myriad of potential hormonal health benefits for women. By modulating estrogen and estrogen metabolism, DIM may help women with various hormonal difficulties.
Because it helps move estrogen down the pathway that produces more favorable estrogen metabolites, DIM may be useful for women struggling with estrogen dominance, PMS, period problems, perimenopause, and menopause. It may also help maintain breast health and could prevent painful breasts .
Have you tried DIM? Let us know in the comments.
Does Dim Lower Estrogen Levels
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Does DIM lower estrogen levels? Diindolylmethane is a compound your body creates when digesting cruciferous vegetables like broccoli. DIM also affects your estrogen level.
Because of the effects of DIM on estrogen, these supplements are increasingly popular to help with hormonal conditions such as acne, menopause, some types of cancer, and prostate problems.
How Do Dim Supplements Balance My Estrogen Levels
DIM supplements are primarily estrogen balance supplements, as they block the enzymes that convert testosterone into estrogen. While taking this supplement you end up with less estrogen circulating through your body. That is why these supplements are sometimes called “DIM estrogen blockers”.
DIM Estro does not have side effects. There have not been any reported toxicities from taking DIM supplements. DIM supplements, including NuMedica Dim Estro, are offered in 100-200mg doses. Any dose above 300mg may cause headaches or dizziness and is not recommended or necessary.
Estrogen is unique as it can be both anti-inflammatory and PRO-inflammatory. Balanced estrogen levels provide anti-inflammatory support for joints and arthritic conditions, whereas high estrogen levels cause inflammation in joints and suppress immune cells. Estrogen dominance usually correlates with high levels of inflammation and adiposity . The solution is three-fold:
For an in-depth explanation of inflammation and how it is affecting your health, review my article Inflammation: Everything You Need to Know. Curcumin, the bioactive phytonutrient in turmeric root, is the queen of anti-inflammatory supplements. It is one of the most studied nutrients boasting thousands of studies showing its efficacy and safety.
Carly Neubert BA, NC
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Known Side Effects Of Dim
So far, research has shown no serious side effects associated with DIM supplementation. There are, however, a few mild side effects that can occur depending on the person who is taking the supplement. Side effects that have been associated with DIM supplementation include:
Lets review a few facts to keep a balanced perspective.
- DIM metabolizes estrogen down the 2-hydroxy estrone pathway.
- It frees up bound testosterone.
- DIM acts as a natural aromatase inhibitor.
- DIM is nontoxic.
- More research is needed to determine DIMs safety fully.
- Safe supplemental dosages have not been established.
- DIM dosages can prove tricky to determine.
- Children and pregnant or nursing women should not take DIM supplements.
- People with liver or kidney disease should consult with a physician before using DIM.
- People at a higher risk for estrogen-sensitive cancers or hormone-related conditions should consult a physician before taking DIM.
- DIM may interact with medications.
How Dim & D
Signs and symptoms of menopausal changes, such as hot flashes, mood swings, and weight gain have in the past been attributed to a simple lack of estrogen. Yet, as discussed in prior articles there are new understandings emerging which apply not only to those dealing with menopause, but also premenstrual syndrome , and sex-hormone problems in general, including male prostate health.
Related article: Menopause & Hot Flashes: DIM Can Really Cool Things Down
It’s true hormonal imbalance can be the result of inadequate production, such as that of estrogen or progesterone. But, in today’s world most of the things we associate with imbalanced sex-hormones are due to a relative excess of estrogenic activity known as “estrogen dominance”.
In the body estrogen and progesterone oppose one another, and balance each other out. Yet, if excess estrogenic activity is present, even if your progesterone production is normal you can still experience symptoms of estrogen dominance.
This is coming about partly because of pollutants in our environment called “xenoestrogens” . These are foreign molecules from sources like BPA, pesticides and plastics. They are close enough in structure to estrogen that they bind the same receptors, and accordingly elicit responses in your tissues.
Xenoestrogens have negative effects on both sexes, feminizing men and wiping out their sex drive, and in women adding to a long list of hormonal dysfunctions.
Enter DIM… What is Diindolylmethane?
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How Did Estrogen Dominance Happen To Me
I am pretty sure in my case it must be the exposure to environmental estrogen-like hormones that are literally everywhere in the modern environment.
Many petrochemical compounds found in general consumer products have chemical structures similar to estrogen and act like estrogen in our body. Even car exhaust, dry-cleaning chemicals, plastics, industrial waste such as PCBs and dioxins are all sources of xenoestrogens.
The concern over phthalates and bisphenol-A is REAL. Even mercury can act like a xenoestrogen by binding to your estrogen receptors.
But dont feel bad ladies, its not just happening to us. Men dont have it any easier. Xenoestrogens are his and her endocrine disruptors. Xenoestrogens are not just disrupting womens hormonal balance, they are also wreaking havoc on mens sperm count and prostate cancer rates.
As Dr. Sarah Gottfried points out in her book, The Hormone Cure , this is not some conspiracy theory. Study after study shows that xenoestrogens can cause estrogen dominance. I would not have believed it had it not happened to me.
The point is, even if you eat clean and live healthy clean lifestyle, chances are if you are over forty and living in our xenoestrogen-saturated environment, you could benefit from taking the estrogen balancing supplement DIM.
Key Takeawaysdoes Dim Lower Estrogen Levels
- DIM is thought to balance estrogen levels
- Along with lowering excess levels and helping promote the metabolism of estrogen, it can also be beneficial to alleviate some of the symptoms of menopause since it acts as a modulator for estrogen imbalance
- As a supplement, DIM may stimulate the production of a less potent and more beneficial type of estrogen, which is 2-hydroxyestrone
- The supplement might also reduce the effects of a stronger form of estrogen, which is associated with weight gain and an increased risk of breast and uterine cancer. This is considered bad estrogen.
- DIM may inhibit aromatase, an enzyme that converts testosterone into estrogen, promoting healthy estrogen metabolism.
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Should I Take Dim If I May Have Liver Or Kidney Complications
Liver and kidney complications can have far-reaching effects on your entire body.
DIM can be good support for kidney and liver health because it assists with removing excess estrogen in the safest, most efficient way.
Bring it up at your next appointment with your practitioner to discuss your situation and see if it is right for you.
Potential Benefits Of Dim Supplements
Studies on DIM have shown promise for breast health, acne, and reducing PMS. There is also data to support its benefits in certain cancers. DIM may be helpful for breast health because it supports Phase 1 metabolism of estrogen in the liver, favoring 2OHE1. Although there is research and anecdotal evidence to suggest benefits, it is important to note that more data is needed.
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Determination Of Levels Of Dim In Biological Samples
DIM was extracted and quantitated from thyroid tissue, urine, and serum samples as described by Sepkovic et al. . Briefly, for measurement of levels of DIM in thyroid tissues, tissues were homogenized and incubated with sodium acetate buffer and glucuronidase . Similarly, for determination of levels of DIM in urine and serum samples, 1mL of sample was diluted with sodium acetate and glucuronidase buffer. The solutions were then incubated at 40°C for 24 hours. The internal standard, 4,4-dichlorodiindolylomethane , was then added, and the samples were extracted with chloroform. 1:4 of dry pyridine and N,O-bis trifluoroacetamide, catalyzed with 1% trimethyl-chlorosilane , were added, and the samples were heated to 100°C for 1 hour. One microliter of each sample was injected into gas chromatographymass spectrometry without further treatment. Gas chromatographymass spectrometry conditions were identical as described by Sepkovic et al. . DIM concentrations in urine were normalized using creatinine levels. Urine creatinine was determined spectrophotometrically using a Beckman Creatinine Analyzer II. After the ELISA was performed, the DIM concentrations were normalized per milligram of creatinine in urine samples.
How Does Calcium D
Calcium D-glucarate works in conjunction with an enzyme in the intestine, beta-glucaronidase, and the livers detoxification process. In the normal functioning of the body, hormones often travel to the liver and are tagged for excretion. The neutralized hormone is excreted in bile, which travels out by way of solid waste, and must pass through the intestine. When beta-glucaronidase encounters a neutralized hormone, it breaks the bond to reactivate this hormone and the hormone is then reabsorbed through the wall of the intestine. Calcium D-glucarate, however, inhibits beta-glucaronidase. By inhibiting beta-glucaronidase, Calcium D-glucarate ensures that the hormone is excreted from the body and not reabsorbed. Normally, beta-glucaronidase and calcium D-glucarate are in balance in your intestine. This ensures that if the body actually needs a hormone that the liver marked for excretion, beta-glucaronidase can recycle the hormone, rather than have the body make it from scratch again. However, calcium D-glucarate inhibits beta-glucaronidase to prevent too many hormones from being reabsorbed. Thus, if the body actually doesnt need a certain hormone at that time, it is excreted.
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Dim Benefits And Side Effects
DIM has shown to have a number of health benefits. DIM benefits include supporting a healthy menopausal transition, promoting hormonal balance in those with polycystic ovarian syndrome . Women with PCOS often have hormonal imbalances that cause hirsutism and acne. Research also shows promising anti-tumor activity of DIM.1
Diindolylmethane is a plant compound found in cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage, Brussel sprouts, cabbage, and kale.
DIM as the ability to interact with both estrogen and testosterone receptors and may help support hormonal balance. Hormonal imbalance contributes to problems such as acne, menopause/PCOS in women, and estrogen dominance in men and women.
Should I Take Dim If I Have Low Estrogen
If your estrogen is low, taking DIM is probably not the best fit for you. My Hormone Balance Supplement might be a better option for your body.
If you are unsure about your estrogen levels, you should get tested. For more information about testing your hormone levels, listen to my Essentially You podcast on this topic.
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How To Use Dim To Reduce Excess Estrogen
DIM is found in vegetables like broccoli, Brussels sprouts and cauliflower, but in order to get just 10-30 mg of DIM you would have to eat one-and-a-half pounds of these cruciferous vegetables! While that amount is better than none, it is not the therapeutic dosage. Most experts recommend taking 100 to 200 mg of DIM a day.
What Is Dim Exactly
Study upon study has proven that more vegetables in our diets reduce our risk of heart disease, strokes, cancer, and many other ailments. Many of these plants medicinal advantages can be attributed to phytonutrients . Although DIM is just one of these phytonutrients, its functions are very specific and special. This compound supports a beneficial shift in the balance of the sex-hormones estrogen and testosterone, which is strongly associated with a lower cancer risk.3 These unique cancer-fighting benefits were first discovered about 20 years ago when broccoli was added to the diets of study animals. Broccoli was found to prevent certain forms of cancer, which established the cruciferous connection. To understand this action, one must understand estrogen, its role in the male and female body, how it is involved in cancer, and its metabolism.
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Food Sources Of Diindolylmethane
DIM is a natural substance that is generated when the body breaks down indole-3-carbinol, which is found in certain vegetables, mainly those that are related to the cabbage family. You can get your natural intake of diindolylmethane if you include these healthy foods in your diet :
- Broccoli : 27 mg per 44 g
- Red Cabbage : 29 mg per 45 g
- Cauliflower : 22 mg per 50 g
You Can Reduce Excess Estrogen With Supplement Dim
Many fertility issues are the result of having estrogen dominance in the body. There are many ways for the body to become estrogen dominant, including:
- The environment
- Processed soy foods
- Chemicals in products
The good news is that there is now a natural way to rid the body of an overabundance of estrogen: a supplement called DIM.
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When Dim Stops Working Whats Going On
While DIM can be an effective supplement for some, it doesnt work as well alone. In fact, you can feel worse after taking it if youre taking it by itself. DIM needs the help of a couple of other nutrients to help it completely flush out the extra estrogen. Heres whats actually happening
The way DIM works is through supporting only Phase I of liver detoxification. However, complete estrogen metabolism in the body requires support of both Phase 1 and Phase 2 liver detoxification pathways.
Liver detoxification is made up of two phases:
- Phase I is all about oxidation .
- Phase II is conjugation .
Phase II also makes the toxins water soluble, preparing them to be eliminated from the body through the bile or urine.
If DIM is used alone, it will help with Phase I liver detoxification, so the toxins and hormones will be oxidized and made ready to be eliminated. However, without an active Phase II pathway, these oxidized toxins will get recirculated in the body, rather than being eliminated.
This means that DIM only partially helps to remove metabolized estrogen from the body. It can also make you feel worse, because the toxins, used up hormones , bile acids, get sent back through your body, creating inflammation and more imbalance.
Thats why DIM needs to be combined with two other nutrients, sulforaphane and calcium D-glucarate. These two nutrients help the liver complete the detoxification process and eliminate the excess estrogen from the body.
Dim For Liver Phase 1 Detox
Your livers health is always the #1 thing I tell women to look at when it comes to estrogen dominance. Because it is HERE that the estrogen metabolism happens primarily and determines which metabolic pathway it follows .Making sure your liver is supported in directing toxins and excess hormones to the least harmful, most neutralized option is essential for your long-term healing. And DIM is an amazing tool for this job!DIM helps your body clear estrogen safely, instead of converting it to the dangerous 16-OH metabolite that wreaks havoc on your body. It helps your liver neutralize toxins along with estrogen so they can safely leave your body instead of being recycled into your bloodstream or damaging your digestive tract along the way.
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Dim For Breast Health
DIM supports liver enzymes that may help with Phase 1 estrogen metabolism, which is the phase that packages hormones and toxins up for elimination.
The best estrogen metabolite is 2-hydroxy estrone , which DIM promotes over the problematic estrogen metabolite, 16 alpha-hydroxy estrone . When estrogen moves down the 16OHE1 pathway, mastalgia may result. Keep in mind that 16OHE1 is the type that can lead to mastalgia and may stimulate estrogen-sensitive cancer cells, like breast cancer.
A double-blind, randomized controlled study showed that 150 Pharmaceutical researchers are taking note and testing indole carbonil-based formulations for mastalgia.
DIM In Estrogen Receptor Positive Breast Cancer
It is also important to note that 16OHE1 metabolites could also stimulate estrogen-sensitive cancer cells, which if left unchecked, could lead to breast tumors.
In a randomized, placebo-controlled trial, women prescribed tamoxifen were either assigned 150 mg of an oral DIM supplement or a placebo for a 12-month period. DIM increased the 2OHE1 ratio compared to the placebo with minimal adverse effects. Researchers concluded that, in women taking tamoxifen, DIM promoted healthier estrogen metabolite production.
The Good Side Of Dim Supplements
DIM contributes to a better metabolism in the most natural way possible because it works with your own hormones and adjusts their action to avoid hormonal imbalance. Furthermore, DIM produces more good estrogen metabolites, which increases the ratio of good estrogen over bad estrogen. Increasing production of good estrogen has many benefits, one of which is that it helps to maintain a slightly higher free testosterone level. The good estrogen metabolites combined with higher free testosterone levels increase fat mobilization and a fat-burning metabolism.
DIM supplements are used to promote beneficial estrogen metabolism and help restore a healthy hormonal balance. In addition, DIM can help prevent or slow the growth of some types of hormone-sensitive cancers, including cervical, breast, uterine, and prostate cancers.
Although studies have shown that increasing the ratio of good estrogen can inhibit the growth of malignant tumors, DIM doesnt just have anti-cancer properties. It also:
- Provides antioxidants to prevent damage from free radicals in the body
- Supports weight loss
- Helps to balance estrogen dominance
- Improves cardiovascular health
- Improves prostate health in men
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