Association between Urinary Phytoestrogens and C-reactive Protein in the Continuous National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey

Michael K. Reger, Terrell W. Zollinger, Ziyue Liu, Josette Jones, Jianjun Zhang 

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Scopus citations


Objective: A reduced risk of some cancers and cardiovascular disease associated with phytoestrogen intake may be mediated through its effect on serum C-reactive protein (CRP; an inflammation biomarker). Therefore, this study examined the associations between urinary phytoestrogens and serum CRP. Methods: Urinary phytoestrogen and serum CRP data obtained from 6009 participants aged ≥ 40 years in the continuous National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey during 1999–2010 were analyzed. Results: After adjustment for confounders, urinary concentrations of total and all individual phytoestrogens were inversely associated with serum concentrations of CRP (all p < 0.004). The largest reductions in serum CRP (mg/L) per interquartile range increase in urinary phytoestrogens (ng/mL) were observed for total phytoestrogens (β = −0.18; 95% confidence interval [CI], −0.22, −0.15), total lignan (β = −0.15; 95% CI, −0.18, −0.12), and enterolactone (β = −0.15; 95% CI, −0.19, −0.12). A decreased risk of having high CRP concentrations (≥3.0 mg/L) for quartile 4 vs quartile 1 was also found for total phytoestrogens (OR = 0.63; 95% CI, 0.53, 0.73), total lignan (OR = 0.64; 95% CI, 0.54, 0.75), and enterolactone (OR = 0.59; 95% CI, 0.51, 0.69). Conclusion: Urinary total and individual phytoestrogens were significantly inversely associated with serum CRP in a nationally representative sample of the U.S. population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of the American College of Nutrition
StateAccepted/In press - Jun 15 2017



  • biomarkers
  • C-reactive protein
  • cross-sectional study
  • Urinary phytoestrogens

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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