Diindolymetano, Diidolylméthane, DIM, 3,3'-Diindolylmethane.


Overview Information

Diindolylmethane is formed in the body from a chemical called indole-3-carbinol, which is found in "cruciferous" vegetables. These vegetables include cabbage, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, and broccoli.

Diindolylmethane is used for breast cancer, prostate cancer, cancer of the uterus, cancer of the cervix, and many other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses.

How does it work?

Diindolylmethane might act like estrogen in the body, but there is evidence that under certain circumstances it might also block estrogen effects. Diindolylmethane also appears to help destroy cancer cells and reduce swelling.


Uses & Effectiveness?

Insufficient Evidence for

More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of diindolylmethane for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

When taken by mouth: Diindolylmethane is LIKELY SAFE when consumed in the small amounts found in foods. A typical diet supplies 2-24 mg of diindolylmethane daily. It is POSSIBLY SAFE for most people when taken by mouth for medicinal purposes. The most common side effects include headache, nausea, vomiting, gas, and diarrhea.

Taking larger doses of diindolylmethane is POSSIBLY UNSAFE. Taking 600 mg of diindolylmethane daily may lower sodium levels in some people.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Diindolylmethane is LIKELY SAFE when consumed in the small amounts found in foods. There isn't enough reliable information to know if larger amounts are safe to use when pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and stick to food amounts.

Children: Diindolylmethane is LIKELY SAFE when consumed in the small amounts found in foods.

Hormone-sensitive conditions such as breast cancer, cancer of the uterus, ovarian cancer, a painful uterine disorder (endometriosis), or non-cancerous growths of the uterus (uterine fibroids): Diindolylmethane might act like estrogen, so there is some concern that it might make hormone-sensitive conditions worse. These conditions include breast, uterus, and ovarian cancer; a painful uterine disorder (endometriosis); and non-cancerous growths of the uterus (uterine fibroids). However, developing research also suggests that diindolylmethane might work against estrogen and could possibly be protective against hormone-dependent cancers. But stay on the safe side. Until more is known, don't use diindolylmethane if you have a hormone-sensitive condition.



Minor Interaction

Be watchful with this combination

  • Medications changed by the liver (Cytochrome P450 1A2 (CYP1A2) substrates) interacts with DIINDOLYLMETHANE

    Some medications are changed and broken down by the liver.
    Diindolylmethane might increase how quickly the liver breaks down some medications. Taking diindolylmethane along with some medications that are changed by the liver can decrease the effectiveness of some medications. Before taking diindolylmethane talk to your healthcare provider if you take any medications that are changed by the liver.
    Some of these medications that are changed by the liver include clozapine (Clozaril), cyclobenzaprine (Flexeril), fluvoxamine (Luvox), haloperidol (Haldol), imipramine (Tofranil), mexiletine (Mexitil), olanzapine (Zyprexa), pentazocine (Talwin), propranolol (Inderal), tacrine (Cognex), theophylline, zileuton (Zyflo), zolmitriptan (Zomig), and others.



The appropriate dose of diindolylmethane depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for diindolylmethane. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

View References


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  • Vivar, O. I., Lin, C. L., Firestone, G. L., and Bjeldanes, L. F. 3,3'-Diindolylmethane induces a G(1) arrest in human prostate cancer cells irrespective of androgen receptor and p53 status. Biochem.Pharmacol. 9-1-2009;78(5):469-476. View abstract.
  • Wang, T. T., Milner, M. J., Milner, J. A., and Kim, Y. S. Estrogen receptor alpha as a target for indole-3-carbinol. J.Nutr.Biochem. 2006;17(10):659-664. View abstract.
  • Wattenberg, L. W. and Loub, W. D. Inhibition of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon-induced neoplasia by naturally occurring indoles. Cancer Res. 1978;38(5):1410-1413. View abstract.

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