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  • Author: Gregor Majdič x
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Tomaž Snoj and Gregor Majdič

Possible effects of xenoestrogens on human health, in particular on male reproductive health, have attracted considerable attention in recent years. Cow's milk was suggested in numerous publications as one of possible sources of xenoestrogens that could affect human health. Although milk has undoubtedly many beneficial health effects and could even have a role in reducing incidence of some cancers, concerns were raised about presumably high levels of estrogens in cow's milk. In intensive farming, concentrations of estrogens in milk are higher due to long milking periods that today extend long into the pregnancy, when concentrations of estrogens in the cow's body rise. Numerous studies examined potential effects of milk on reproductive health and endocrine-related cancers in both experimental studies with laboratory animals, and in human epidemiological studies. In the present review article, we compiled a review of recently published literature about the content of estrogens in cow's milk and potential health effects, in particular on reproductive system, in humans. Although results of published studies are not unequivocal, it seems that there is stronger evidence suggesting that amounts of estrogens in cow's milk are too low to cause health effects in humans.