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“Bust Enhancing” Herbal Products

Fugh-Berman, Adriane MD

Current Commentary

“Bust enhancing” herbal products are widely advertised. No clinical trials have been published. These products contain a variety of ingredients, including grains, hops, saw palmetto, dong quai, chaste-tree berry, wild yam, kava, fennel, black cohosh, and fenugreek. Several of these herbs are hormonally active; for example, hops contain 8-prenylnaringenin, a phytoestrogen that is more potent than other dietary phytoestrogens. Many bust-enhancing dietary supplements contain substrates for Fusarium, a fungus that produces zearalenone, a potent estrogen that has been associated with breast enlargement in humans and other species. The use of bust-enhancing products should be discouraged because of lack of evidence for efficacy and long-term safety concerns.

There is no evidence that “bust enhancing” herbal products are effective, and safety concerns exist.

Department of Health Care Sciences, George Washington University School of Medicine, Washington, DC

Address reprint requests to: Adriane Fugh-Berman, MD, 1312 18th Street NW, Washington DC 20036; E-mail: fughberman@aol.com.

The author acknowledges Ed Kennelly, PhD, and Fredi Kronenberg, PhD, for high-pressure liquid chromatography analysis.

Received November 26, 2002. Received in revised form December 16, 2002. Accepted January 23, 2003.

© 2003 The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists