Epimedium in Bone and Joint Health

Phytoestrogens are plant-based estrogens found in horny goat weed and other plants. They can imitate the action of estrogen. Low estrogen levels after menopause can cause bone loss. Some alternative medicine practitioners suggest phytoestrogens can help treat this bone loss.

Scientists tested this theory in a 2007 study.

In the study, 85 late-postmenopausal women took either a placebo (sugar pill) or a phytoestrogen supplement extracted from horny goat weed. They all took 300 milligrams (mg) of calcium per day as well.

Two years later, horny goat weed extract appeared to help prevent bone loss. The phytoestrogen group had better bone turnover markers (the measure of how much new bone is being made to replace old bone tissue).


Horny goat weed wasn't linked with any negative effects that women experience when taking estrogen, such as endometrial hyperplasia (irregular thickening of the uterine wall). In some cases, endometrial hyperplasia can lead to cancer of the uterus.

Additionally, a 2018 animal study looked at the effects of icariin, the substance extracted from horny goat weed. They found that icariin can help slow the breakdown of cartilage in the joints that causes osteoarthritis.

Cartilage is a tissue that helps cushion the joints and prevents bones from rubbing together. When there's not enough cartilage to absorb shock, you may experience osteoarthritis symptoms like joint inflammation and stiffness.

Post time: Jul-19-2022

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