Narrator: This is Science Today. Estrogen replacement therapy is not an easy choice for many women. While the hormone does relieve the discomforts of menopause and helps prevent osteoporosis and heart disease, it's risk of uterine and breast cancer has made many women leery. Diana Taylor, an expert in women's health at the University of California, San Francisco, says the best bet to stave off disease is to make lifestyle changes.
Taylor: Since we don't want to do harm, that women do things that are natural before they start thinking about using something that may cause another disease. The things that women could do would be to increase exercise, decrease fat in your diet. The other is to not smoke or to quit smoking. Those three things would probably do more to prevent disease and to improve our health.
Narrator: Recently, short-term studies were conducted which found some new designer estrogens strengthened thinning bones without increasing the risk of breast cancer.
Taylor: So there's some new research on the horizon that may help us to have it all.
Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.