Red Clover: A Rich Source of Isoflavones

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Red Clover :  Pavine Clover or Cowgrass.

Red clover is a legume that is a rich source of isoflavones.

Isoflavones are abundant in soy and other legumes as well.

However, some of the isoflavones found in red clover are not present in soy.

Red Clover contains various isoflavones, including biochanin A, formononetin, daidzein and genisten.

Isoflavones are phytoestrogens, or compounds found in plants that exhibit both mild estrogenic activity and anti-estrogen effects, depending on the ambient hormonal milieu.

To briefly explain this, hormones are produced in various glands, tissues and organs, and secreted into the blood stream where they travel to their target tissues.

The target tissues have receptor sites for specific hormones.

When the hormone binds to the receptor, a physiological response is initiated.

Phytoestrogens can bind to estrogen receptors and elicit either pro-estrogenic effects, or anti-estrogenic effects on target tissues.

Which response occurs depends in part on how much estrogen the body is producing and how saturated the estrogen receptors are.

When estrogen levels are high, in the pre-menopausal state, phytoestrogens effectively compete with the body’s own estrogen for receptor site binding. As the phytoestrogens provide a much weaker estrogenic effect then that produced in the body, the overall estrogenic activity is reduced.

When estrogen levels are low, as in menopausal women then the phytoestrogens bind to the receptor sites where they initiate a weakly pro-estrogenic effect.

Benefits of Red Clover

  • The isoflavones in red clover are used primarily to alleviate the symptoms of female menopause.
  • Red clover is also used to support the prostate gland and normal urinary tract function in males, to promote general prostate health and is also cited to support normal cholesterol levels.
  • Red clover isoflavones are generally recommended for relief of menopausal symptoms and for general health and well-being of postmenopausal women.
  • Red clover has also been cited to help maintain normal blood cholesterol levels and to maintain a healthy urinary tract and prostate.
  • Due to recent studies red clover extracts are currently used more for their phytoestrogenic properties.

    However, red clover has been used historically by Orientals and Europeans as a medicinal herb for a variety of purposes.

  • In folk medicine, red clover has been used to promote lymph flow and support immune system function.

    It is suggested to provide a mild sedative effect that can relax and relieve muscle cramping and nervousness.

  • Red clover is also known as a blood purifier and for improving the overall health of the liver.

    It may also act as a digestive aid and stimulator of digestive fluids and bile production.

  • Traditionally, the blossoms from the red clover plant were used as a tonic taken in the spring to promote good health and peace of mind.
  • Red Clover contains small amounts of silica, choline, calcium and lecithin, all important for normal body function.
  • Red Clover help with muscle relaxation and also is a good expectorant.

    It is an old-time topical remedy for eczema.

Common Uses of Red Clover in herbal medicines:
Blood purification, alterative, antineoplastic, skin ailments, wounds; antispasmodic, bronchitis, coughs.

Red Clover combines well with other herbs; Burdock, Stillinngia, Golden Seal, etc. Believed to be soothing to nerves, ulcers, psoriasis, eczema, and gentle enough for children.

Other Possible Benefits of Red Clover:

  • Skin Health
  • Upper Respiratory tract health
Red Clover is also known as Pavine Clover or Cowgrass.


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