Women are constantly bombarded with messages about how they are supposed to look, and among the silliest is the idea that you've got to have at least a C-cup breast size to attract a mate. Of course, manufacturers leapt right in to offer a solution with no effort required beyond swallowing the magic pills they sell. Unless you also count swallowing their questionable claims.
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Because of the way breast tissue is formed, there are no vitamins that will magically increase the size of your breasts.
Basic Facts About Breasts
Breast size depends on a whole host of different factors. Genetics is the key factor, according to the body experts at Shape, and that includes genes from both sides of your family. Breasts are basically made up of fatty tissue, along with milk ducts. It is very common for women to have breasts that are two different sizes. Breast size does not predict how much milk you may be able to produce, though malnutrition can result in undeveloped or underdeveloped milk glands.
Your breasts will change size and shape throughout your life. Natural breast enlargement can occur when you gain weight; take certain medications; exercise; or experience pregnancy, childbirth and nursing. Losing weight can shrink your breasts, and aging often means loss of elasticity in your connective tissue, which contributes to the natural sagging that occurs with time.
Read more: What Causes Large Breasts?
The Truth About Breast Enhancement Pills
According to the medical experts at the Mayo Clinic, certain medications can increase breast size. These include birth control pills, estrogen replacement supplements and the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) found in antidepressants. Over-the-counter supplements to increase breast size do not contain any of these medications, so these products are not likely to be effective.
Most supplements advertised to increase breast size contain one or more phytoestrogens. These compounds, according to the science experts at ConsumerLab, mimic the way estrogen behaves in your body. Taking estrogen can increase your breast size — but it also increases your risk of breast cancer, because breast cells artificially induced to grow are more likely to develop cancer.
Estrogen binds to estrogen receptors in your body. Phytoestrogens also do this, but only partially. Their presence blocks natural estrogen from binding to these receptors, so the use of phytoestrogens should actually shrink your breasts or at least inhibit artificial growth.
Tips and Warnings
Because breast tissue is mostly fat, it is not possible to increase your breast size through exercise, the way you can enlarge your biceps or calf muscles. But doing exercises that work your pectoral muscles, which are the muscles behind your breasts, may make them appear a little larger and possibly perk them up a bit.
Though vitamin E capsules for breast growth are not effective, opening a capsule and applying the oil directly to your skin may help keep your breasts supple and less prone to sagging.
Birth control pills can temporarily increase breast size, according to Medical News Today, but this is temporary and often due to simple water retention. The Pill does come with some side effects, so have a thorough consultation with your health-care provider if you want to start taking it.
The biggest problem with breast enlargement pills is that they are not regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, cautions Modern Mom. Certain herbs can also interfere with medications you are already taking. Saw palmetto, often found in breast enlargement pills, can interfere with blood thinners; other phytoestrogens can decrease the efficiency of your birth control pills.