Ipriflavone is not a food. Rather, it’s an isoflavone supplement that’s made from daidzein, one of the main phytoestrogens found in soybeans. Since I have just finished discussing soy’s potential for maintaining healthy bones, it’s a perfect time to discuss ipriflavone. And when it comes to preventing bone loss, this is one supplement you might consider taking.
Research suggests that ipriflavone, taken alone or with calcium, is more effective at maintaining bone density than calcium alone. Studies show that ipriflavone enhances the effects of calcium and vitamin D in preventing osteoporosis when they are taken together. Ipriflavone enhances the action of cells that build bone and inhibits the activity of cells that break down bone.
Based on the positive research findings, you might decide to buy a calcium supplement that has added ipriflavone. Look for a product that contains Ostivone™, a high quality extract of ipriflavone that has been used in scientific research.
The standard dose is 200 milligrams three times daily taken with food. Choose a product that has other nutrients important for bone health, including calcium, vitamin D, magnesium and vitamin C. Such a supplement can replace your standard calcium pill. Brand names of calcium supplements with Ostivone™ added include Rx-Bone Ostivone, Bone Renew, and Bone Protector.
Side effects of ipriflavone are uncommon but may include stomach upset, diarrhea and dizziness. One recent study found that ipriflavone reduced the number of certain white blood cells in some women. So far this side effect was seen in only one study. There have been more than 60 clinical trials that have not shown this effect. Women with hormone-sensitive health conditions such as breast, uterine and ovarian cancer, endometriosis and uterine fibroids should seek the advice of a physician, as ipri-flavone may enhance some effects of estrogen. As with many natural health products, women with liver or kidney disease should use the supplement with caution.