Effect of whole soy and purified daidzein on ambulatory blood pressure and endothelial function--a 6-month double-blind, randomized controlled trial among Chinese postmenopausal women with prehypertension.Eur J Clin Nutr. 2015 Oct; 69(10):1161-8.EJ
Although observational studies suggest that soy foods or isoflavones are cardio-protective, clinical trials on whole soy or isoflavone daidzein (one major isoflavone and the precursor of equol) on blood pressure (BP) and endothelial function (EF) are few and have not been specifically conducted among equol producers, a population most likely to benefit from soy treatment.
We performed a 6-month double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial to examine the effect of whole soy (soy flour) or purified daidzein on BP and EF in prehypertensive or untreated hypertensive postmenopausal women verified to be equol producers. A total of 270 eligible women were recruited and randomized to either one of the three treatment groups, 40 g soy flour (whole soy group), 40 g low-fat milk powder+63 mg daidzein (daidzein group) or 40 g low-fat milk powder (active control group) daily, each given as a solid beverage powder for 6 months. The primary outcome measures were 24 h ambulatory BP (ABP) and EF assessed by flow-mediated dilation using brachial artery ultrasound.
A total of 253 subjects completed the study according to protocol. Urinary isoflavones indicated good compliance with the interventions. Intention to treat and per-protocol analysis indicated that there was no significant difference in the 6-month changes or % changes in parameters of ABP and brachial flow-mediated dilation among the three treatment groups. A further subgroup analysis among hypertensive women (n=138) did not alter the conclusions.
Whole soy and purified daidzein had no significant effect on BP and vascular function among equol-producing postmenopausal women with prehypertension or untreated hypertension.