Beta-alanine against hot flashes
Readers of this web magazine probably already know that beta-alanine is not only interesting for athletes, but also has broader applications. It will therefore not surprise them that beta-alanine may also protect menopausal women against hot flashes.
In 2020, Russian and Georgian scientists published a review article in the European Review for Medical and Pharmacological Sciences on the use of beta-alanine against hot flashes. The researchers were paid by Bouchara-Recordati, which operates from France. Since 1991, that company has been marketing products containing beta-alanine under brand names such as Klimalanin and Abufene that are intended to alleviate menopausal symptoms.
According to Bouchara-Recordati, beta-alanine in doses of 400-1200 milligrams could prevent hot flashes, possibly by blocking the release of histamine. To be honest, we don't understand if and how beta-alanine can achieve that, but whatever.
In their overview article, the researchers list a number of trials that are difficult to access. One of these appeared in 1991 in a French-language medical journal. [La Revue du Praticien - Medecine generale 1991;5:2385-8.] [Research 1] Another trial dates from 2013 and appeared in a scientific journal that was completely unknown to us. [Gynecology 2013;15:6-13.] [Study 2]
Study 1 was paid for by Bouchara-Recordati. We do not know who paid for research 2.
In Study 1, 28 menopausal women served as subjects. For 8 weeks, half of them received a placebo every day and the other half a supplement with 400 milligrams of beta-alanine. The beta-alanine group reduced the number of hot flashes per day considerably more than in the placebo group.
The figure below shows this.
Study 2 lasted 3 months. The subjects were 108 women who received a monthly injection of triptorelin. As a result, their ovaries stopped producing estradiol. Some of them took 800 milligrams of beta-alanine daily, while others took a placebo.
Supplementation also reduced the number of hot flashes in this study, as shown in the figure below.
Beta-alanine did not have any serious side effects. However, the trials did show that beta-alanine increased the quality of life and improved sleep.
"Beta-alanine represents a safe and reliable therapeutic option for all women dealing with menopausal hot flushes, especially when hormone-replacement therapy is not a suitable choice", write the researchers.
Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci. 2020 May;24(9):5148-54.
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