Health Benefits of Indole-3-Carbinol

Indole-3-Carbinol balances hormone levels, improves breast health, detoxifies the intestines and liver, and supports the immune system.

Thermographic imaging demonstrates positive outcome after 6 months of indole-3-carbinol supplementation and improved lifestyle changes:

  • Image on the left shows significant hormonal imbalance (estrogen dominance).
  • Image on the right shows breast tissue has become more settled.

Estrogen Balance

The accumulation of environmental estrogens (Xenoestrogens) from sources such as poor nutrition, lack of exercise, increased levels of stress, environmental toxins and certain medications such as hormone replacement therapy can increase the risks of most gynecological cancers including endometrial, ovarian and breast cancer as well as increasing the risks of heart attacks and stroke. Too much estrogen also contributes to PMS and menopausal type symptoms including bloating, breast tenderness, moodiness irritability and water retention.

Estrogen metabolism in the body is determined by an individual’s biochemical make-up with some likely to produce more 2-hydroxy derivatives (the “good” estrogens) and others producing more 16-hydroxyesterone (the “bad” estrogen).

Indole-3-Carbinol for Breast Health

Indole-3-Carbinol has been shown to act as a catalyst to decrease the body’s load of unhealthy estrogens and reduce symptoms of estrogen dominance. Indole-3-carbinol acts as a phytoestrogen (binds to bad estrogen to eliminate it from the body) blocking the ability of cancer cells to replicate. Studies show that indole-3-carbinol not only suppressed the cell division of certain breast cancer cells by inducing programmed cell death (apoptosis) while producing no such effect on normal breast cells. This effect may be one of the reasons that a high lifetime intake of cruciferous vegetables is associated with a significant reduction in breast cancer. These findings suggest that women with breast cancer may be well advised to consume cruciferous vegetables and possibly supplement their diet with indole-3-carbinol supplements.

Consuming a diet high in cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, asparagus, cauliflower, spinach, brussel sprouts, celery, beets, kale, cabbage, parsley, radish, turnip, collard and mustard greens has been shown to improve the production of “good” estrogen. Cruciferous vegetables differ from other classes of vegetables in that they are rich sources of sulfur-containing compounds known as glucosinolates. Indole-3-carbinol works as a strong antioxidant, thereby protecting the DNA and other cell structures.

Healthier is Smarter!

Sharon Edwards – BA, R(Hom), DNM, RNCP, CTT