Daidzein is a phytoestrogen or an isoflavone with a 6-3-6 carbon structure. It belongs to aglycone group of daidzein glycosides. It is found in various plants like soybeans, some peas, madoudou (hairy beans), Kudzu, Kwao Krua and red clover. For over centuries, communities in East Asia and Hawaii appreciate soybeans, peas and madoudou as sources of significant dietary compounds. Around the 1960’s, scientists studied the nutritional compound in these foods. The compound was identified as Daidzein.
Initially, the soybeans and other types of beans were taken because they contained significant nutritional benefits. Current scientific studies confirm that Daidzein contains other nutritional benefits including:
Anti-cancer Properties — Scientists from the Duksung Women’s University in South Korea analyzed the anti-cancer properties of Daidzein. When taken in dosages of 1-100muM for a significant period, it causes the arrest of G1 and G2 phases of cancer cells development. This study was published in the Journal of toxicological science. Additionally, scientists at the Amala Cancer Research Center in India confirmed that Daidzein reduces lung metastasis.
Reduction of Osteoporosis — This study was confirmed by Australian scientists in the year 2000. Using flour based meals with extracts of Daidzein stimulates the formation of osteoblasts. These osteoblasts are responsible for the formation of bone. This study was published in the Journal of Experimental Biology and Medicine. The recommended dosage is up to 100mg a day.
Boosts the body immune system — Scientists from the Tsinghua University in China published a study in the Journal of Phytomedicine stating this fact. In their study, they showed that this extract works by increasing the phagocytic response of macrophages. Taking around 2 teaspoons of the substance in a day also improves cell-mediated immunity.
Reduction of Cholesterol level and improvement of cardiovascular function — A double-blinded study published in the Journal of Nutrition in the year 2014 confirmed that up to 80 mg of Daidzein daily reduces cholesterol. The isoflavone compounds have receptors that reduce cholesterol in hypercholesterolemic individuals.
Antioxidant Properties — Daidzein is a significant antioxidant. Scientists from the University of Milan published a study in the year 2006 that confirms that Daidzein protects cells against oxidative damage. The researchers used around 300mg of the compound and found out that these cells have anti-oxidant properties.
The Journal of Nutrition published a study in the year 2009, showing that Daidzein works well when taken at 10-20 milligrams per kilogram of body weight daily. This dosage works in cancers. For nutritional purposes, the dosage is between 200-300mg per kilogram of body weight daily. Daidzein can be taken for boosting the immune system. In this case, the dosage required is 1000mg daily or 1000mg a few times a week.
Daidzein Side Effects
Scientific studies do not confirm any adverse side effects in individuals. Most researchers confirm that Daidzein is safe as a nutritional supplement. However, some infants have been known to display allergic symptoms. The study published in the Journal of Nutrition confirms that some infants fed on formula or feeds containing 7000 nm/L are likely to have allergic symptoms. The only way to avoid these effects is by taking the recommended dosage. It is important to talk to a qualified and certified pharmacologist or a doctor for the recommended dosage.
While Daidzein is an almost harmless nutrient supplement, it is contraindicated in some cases. People with borderline iodine deficiency are supposed to consult a physician prior to consumption of Daidzein. This is because the compound inhibits the synthesis and function of the enzyme peroxidase. This affects the function of the thyroid. Overuse of phytoestrogens may also lead to the development of chronic kidney disease. It is, therefore, necessary to use the substance minimally.
- Journal of Toxicological Science: Daidzein: Bioavailability potential for reproductive toxicity, and breast cancer chemoprevention in female rats.
- Journal of Nutrition: Isoflavone-rich soy protein isolate suppresses androgen receptor expression without altering estrogen receptor-beta expression or serum hormonal profiles in men at high risk of prostate cancer.
- Journal of Nutrition: The health consequences of early soy consumption.
- Environmental Health Perspectives: dual effects of phytoestrogens result in u-shaped dose-response curves.
- Experimental Biology and Medicine: Gut bacterial metabolism of the soy isoflavone daidzein: Exploring the relevance to human health.