On September 23, the New York-based integrative wellness center Patients Medical highlighted the importance of eating phytoestrogenic foods to reduce ovarian cancer risk and promote health.

Phytoestrogens are part of the functional food trend category phytochemicals that are often referred to as "dietary estrogen."

According to PlanetGreen.com, Discovery's greener living site, you "should care" about phytoestrogenic foods because in addition to ovarian health they can also help with hormone imbalance symptoms including "allergy symptoms, depression, fatigue and anxiety, endometriosis, hair loss and facial hair growth, headaches, dizziness and foggy thinking, low sex drive, osteoporosis, and wrinkly skin to name a few."

However Susun Weed, the author of New Menopausal Years the Wise Woman Way ($16.95/€13), urges women to only reach for plant-based phytoestrogens.

"This seems simple - eat more phytoestrogens, be healthier - and it is, so long as we restrict ourselves to eating plants.

"When phytoestrogens are isolated and concentrated, sold to us in pills and candy bars, then the equation changes: phytoestrogens become dangerous hormones, quite capable of promoting cancer," cautions Weed.

Here is a list of phytoestrogenic foods adapted from healthy sites' (Patients Medical, E.Hormone, Weed, Planet Green) dietary recommendations:  

Soy: tofu, tempeh, soy beverages
Legumes and beans: lentils, yellow split peas, mung beans 
Whole grains: wheatberries, oats, barley, buckwheat, quinoa 
Nuts and seeds: almonds, flax, sesame  
Herbs and seasonings: fenugreek, garlic, ginseng, parsley 
Roots vegetables: yams, carrots
Greens: kelp, kale, cabbage, ramps
Fruit: apples, pomegranates, olives, quinces, rosehips

The World Health Organization estimates "30% of cancer deaths can be prevented," however cancer mortality is on the rise and it "estimates 12 million deaths in 2030."

To read excerpts from New Menopausal Years the Wise Woman Way and see a more detailed list of phytoestrogenic food, herbs and advice, go to: http://www.fwhc.org/health/phytoestrogens.htm