Breast enlargement supplements
Breast enlargement supplements are frequently portrayed as being a natural means to increase breast size, and with the suggestion that they are free from risk.:1330 The popularity of breast enlargement supplements stems from their heavy promotion:1330 towards women.:1345 At times, testimonials by companies have been faked.:1345 The Mayo clinic advises that there may be serious drug interactions with use. There has been historical folklore about using herbs for breast enlargement.
Types and ingredients
Products typically contain a variety of ingredients of plant or fungal origin. The compounds claimed to be pharmacologically active are typically estrogen mimics (called xenoestrogens; specifically known as phytoestrogens in plants and mycoestrogens in fungi).
- Black cohosh:1330
- Dong quai:1331
- Pueraria mirifica
- Zearalenone Other supplements are unlikely to have been spoiled with the mould.:1348
Efficacy and Safety
There is inadequate scientific study whether herbal breast enlargement can be safely achieved. It is unlikely that any of the common ingredients would be efficacious.:1347 No randomized, blinded and fully controlled tests has been performed to test any breast enhancement product.:1332 Most supplement ingredients do not have significant adverse effects, but some ingredients are potentially dangerous for consumption or use.:1348
Herbal products are normally sold under "generally regarded as safe" (GRAS) rules and are not approved for this indication.
Some naturally occurring compounds produced by plants and fungi can carry serious health risks. One potential risk is an increased chance of breast cancer. Some of the ingredients included in supplements are carcinogenic, including don quai.:1331 By altering the body's hormonal levels, certain ingredients, including zearalenone, may reduce fertility.
One ingredient, kava may cause liver damage.:1347 Black cohosh has been shown to have no estrogenic effect in vivo or in vitro.:1330 Hops contain estrogen-like compounds, called prenylflavonoids, of the most potent is 8-prenylnaringenin. Hops' role on fertility lacks research.:4914 Prenylflavonoids from hops have anticancer properties. Zearalenone and its derivatives are a class of xenoestrogens associated with many herbal bust enhancement products. There have been some indications that Zearalenone can increase the size of breasts in humans, but there are no tests of efficacy or safety.:1345 Zearalenone, produced by a toxic fungus, is a mycoestrogen that stimulates the growth of breast cancer cells, increases the chance of estrogen dependent breast cancer, and may reduce fertility. Other supplements are unlikely to have been spoiled with the mould.:1348
Indirect assay tests of the product Erdic (also known as Bust out) on the uterus of rodents, by measuring the amount of estrogen present, showed no difference from the control.:1345 Preliminary findings in 2001, in mice, suggested that Hops based products would be ineffective. Another test, of a hops ingredient on mice showed weak effects for high dosages.:1346 Diosgenin contained in fenugreek and wild yam affected maturation, but that wasn't enough evidence for this indication.:1347
- Chalfoun, Charbel; McDaniel, Candice; Motarjem, Pejman; Evans, Gregory R. D.; Plastic Surgery Educational Foundation DATA Committee (2004). "Breast-Enhancing Pills: Myth and Reality". Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery 114 (5): 1330–3. doi:10.1097/01.PRS.0000141495.14284.8B. PMID 15457059.
- Fugh-Berman, A (2003). "'Bust enhancing' herbal products". Obstetrics & Gynecology 101 (6): 1345–9. doi:10.1016/S0029-7844(03)00362-4. PMID 12798545.
- Pruthi M.D., Sandhya (16 August 2012). "Natural breast enhancement: Does it work?". Mayo Clinic. Retrieved 8 February 2014.
- Breast-Enlarging Herbs: A Bust?, Psychology Today, 2010
- Pazaiti, A.; Kontos, M.; Fentiman, I. S. (2012). "ZEN and the art of breast health maintenance". International Journal of Clinical Practice 66 (1): 28–36. doi:10.1111/j.1742-1241.2011.02805.x. PMID 22145580.
- Milligan, S. R.; Kalita, JC; Pocock, V; Van De Kauter, V; Stevens, JF; Deinzer, ML; Rong, H; De Keukeleire, D (2000). "The Endocrine Activities of 8-Prenylnaringenin and Related Hop (Humulus lupulus L.) Flavonoids". Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism 85 (12): 4912–5. doi:10.1210/jc.85.12.4912. PMID 11134162.
- Stevens, Jan F; Page, Jonathan E (2004). "Xanthohumol and related prenylflavonoids from hops and beer: To your good health!". Phytochemistry 65 (10): 1317–30. doi:10.1016/j.phytochem.2004.04.025. PMID 15231405.
- Coldham, N.G; Sauer, M.J (2001). "Identification, quantitation and biological activity of phytoestrogens in a dietary supplement for breast enhancement". Food and Chemical Toxicology 39 (12): 1211–24. doi:10.1016/S0278-6915(01)00081-3. PMID 11696395.