For a period of time, everyone was jumping on the soy bandwagon. Every where you turned, people were drinking soy milk, eating tofu everything – tofu burger, tofu hot dogs. As long as soy was an ingredient, the health-conscious, particularly of the vegan kind, would eat it.
But in recent years, studies have shown that soy may actually be bad for you. Originally thought to help reduce heart disease and reduce cholesterol, studies have shown that soy does nothing for heart health.
One of the reasons why soy became so popular is because it was thought that Asians ate a lot of soy. Westerners saw how slim and healthy Asians were and thought soy was the reason. Thus resulted in the increase in consumption of soy milk and tofu.
These studies did not take into account that the amount of vegetables and fish and limited amount of red meat that Asians often ate were actually the reasons for how slim and healthy they were.
In fact, soy has been found to result in some negative consequences. Soy contains phytoestrogens, or hormones, that have resulted in young girls going through puberty earlier than they should and young boys having excess estrogen resulting in physical defects. These findings came after a period when women were drinking a lot of soy milk both before, during, and after their pregnancies. These findings also came after studying children who were lactose intolerant and were given soy milk to drink in place of cow’s milk.
Studies also found that men who drank a lot of soy milk had less virile sperm and that women who drank a lot of soy milk or had a lot of soy in their diets, were more susceptible to breast cancer down the road.
Through my research and studies in nutrition, I have found that soy is not something that I want to include in my diet. Although I do not avoid soy completely – I still drink miso soup when I go to a Japanese restaurant and I still eat tofu on occasion – I will say that I do not actively try to include soy in my diet as some people do. In fact, I try to avoid it if I can.
As always, this is my view on a particular food item or diet regimen and you are welcome to agree or disagree. The purpose of my blog is to provide you with information and education that can help you live a healthier more informed life about what you are putting into your mouth and your body.
So if you are drinking soy milk because you are lactose intolerant but decide now that you want to avoid it, you can find other milk alternatives. I usually drink almond milk or rice milk. I still have cow’s milk in my occasional coffee. But I never drink soy milk anymore. Read some of the articles below and do your own research and ask your primary care doctor for more information about whether or not soy should be in your diet.