Soy has been touted as a health food and great source of protein for years. It has been said that soy helps to lower cholesterol, protect against cancer, reduce menopausal symptoms, and is heart friendly, but is that really the truth or have we been misled for years?
The answer is YES, we have been misled. More and more studies are linking soy to malnutrition, digestive issues, thyroid dysfunction, infertility, heart diseases, cognitive decline, and cancer. Scientists are already convinced about the dangers, but the billion dollar soy industry is still trying to suppress these statements.
So these days there is a lot of confusion and soy has become very controversial in the nutrition field.
A Bit Of Soy’s History
Soy finds its origin in Asia, where it was used to fix nitrogen in the soil. Back then they knew you couldn’t eat soybeans because they contain a lot of toxins and anti-nutrients that can harm our body. Later, they discovered several fermentation techniques and found they could inactivate the toxins and produce foods like miso, natto, tempeh, and soy sauce that are safe for consumption.
Contrary to what we think in the West, Asians do not use soy as their main source of protein. They use fermented soy products in small amounts as a condiment for cooking.
Only recently we started to consume unfermented, highly processed soy products like soy milk, infant formula, edamame, tofu, and soy protein as a result of a massive advertising investment of the growing soy industry.
Although there are many studies praising soy’s health benefits, these studies are all talking about fermented soy and not the unfermented stuff we are served in the West.
So stop believing the mainstream media as they are lumping fermented and unfermented soy together and we have been tricked, again, into believing we are consuming a superfood while it could actually make you very sick.
After all, soy is one of the main crops grown in the US and a huge cash cow for the companies who are putting billions in their advertising campaigns to make sure we still believe soy is a miracle food.
The Dangers Of Unfermented Soy Products
1. Unfermented Soy Is Loaded With Harmful Toxins
Soy contains many natural toxins such as saponins, goitrogens, oxalates, phytates, phytoestrogens, hemagglutinin (which promotes blood clots), and many more. When eaten in large amounts, like in in our Western diets, these toxins can make you very sick and be the onset of many life-threatening diseases and allergies.
And if that isn’t bad enough already, soy products are highly processed. During processing free glutamic acid (MSG) is produced and even more is added to mask soy’s natural bad taste. (Click here to learn more about the dangers of MSG).
And MSG is not the only toxin that ends up in the final soy product. Soy beans are washed with acids in aluminum tanks during production, which leads to high levels of aluminum ending up in the final product. Both MSG and aluminum are toxic to your nerves and brain.
2. Phytoestrogens Function As Endocrine Disruptors And Increase The Risk Of Cancer
Unfermented soy contains high levels of estrogen-like compounds that are classified as endocrine disruptors, which interfere with your normal hormone function. They prevent actual estrogen from binding or lead to an increased estrogen activity.
Although these estrogen-like compounds have shown to be beneficial to ease menopausal symptoms, the risks associated with these compounds outweigh any potential health benefit.
Multiple studies show that these phytoestrogens stimulate the proliferation and activity of breast cells. These overstimulated cells are more likely to turn into uncontrolled cancerous cells and increase the risk of breast cancer.
And not only women are at risk. Exposure to estrogen-like compounds in men affect testosterone levels and can cause adverse effects on cause infertility, low sperm count, and prostate cancer.
And did you know that when you feed your infant soy formula you are actually feeding it the same amount of estrogens equal to 4 or 5 birth control pills? This can have severe effects on their sexual development and cause cancer or thyroid issues later in their lives.
3. Soy Suppresses Your Normal Thyroid Function
The same estrogen-like compounds act as goitrogens, which interfere with the thyroid function. They inhibit the normal function of key enzymes responsible for the production of thyroid hormone and have been linked to hypothyroidism.
4. Soy Causes Malnutrition
High levels of phytic acid present in unfermented soy blocks your digestive system to absorb essential nutrients such as zinc, copper, calcium, iron, magnesium, vitamin D, and vitamin B12.
5. Most Soy Is GMO And Heavily Sprayed With Pesticides
Over 80% of soy grown in the US is genetically modified which allows them to be sprayed with pesticides (Round-up) without killing the plant. Studies show that this gene mutation can produce pesticide-like compounds in our body and be the onset of many of our diseases and allergies.
Take Home Message
Fermented soy can be a healthy addition to your diet, but should still be consumed in moderation and not as a primary sources of protein. Don’t believe the hype that tofu, soy milk, and other unfermented soy products are great for your health.
I speak from my own experience. Doctors had told me to consume more soy products like soymilk and tofu to reduce my cholesterol levels and improve my heart health. The result was a disrupted hormone balance and painful lumps and calcifications in both breast, which can be the onset of breast cancer. I stopped all soy intake and everything went back to normal.
SO SOY IS DEFINITELY NOT THE HEALTH FOOD WE THINK IT IS!
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- Excessive soybean ingestion for a certain duration might suppress thyroid function and cause goiters in healthy people, especially elderly subjects.
- Biological effects of a diet of soy protein rich in isoflavones on the menstrual cycle of premenopausal women
- Dietary estrogens stimulate human breast cells to enter the cell cycle
- Developmental exposure to environmental estrogens is associated with adverse consequences later in life.