By David Blyweiss, M.D., Advanced Natural Wellness
September 30, 2016
- Are you eating the wrong kind of soy?
- The unhealthy side of soy
- Discover the Japanese soy secret
Put down that that veggie burger or tofu dog before you hurt yourself!
Yes, I’m serious.
You see, there’s a problem with the soy you’re eating in the name of good health. It’s probably not the real deal.
The soy and tofu “meats” that are so popular here in the U.S. don’t actually contain any real, natural, organic soy. In fact, most of it isn’t anything like the healthy soy foods Japan and other Asian countries are so well-known for.
Instead, the majority contains a stripped down version of soy called “soy protein isolate”. That’s the name you’ll see on the ingredient list. When you see it on the label, it’s a sure sign that all of the nutritional value associated with soy is missing.
Plus, during processing, toxic ingredients are added. The isolate is also exposed to extremely high temperatures during the drying process. This taints the molecular structure of the soy.
As a result, the end product is loaded with potential cancer-causing toxins. The only thing left is the protein. And it’s likely that the extreme heat damages that, too.
To make matters worse, the soy you’re eating is probably genetically altered.
Are You Eating the Wrong Kind of Soy?
I don’t like GMO foods. Most folks don’t. Yet, more than 90% of U.S. soy crops are altered.
The majority of them are “Roundup-ready” crops. This means farmers can douse them with liberal doses of Roundup weed killer without killing the crops.
The main ingredient in Round-up, glyphosate, is a poisonous chemical that kills your good gut bacteria, affects your liver’s CYP 450 detoxification enzyme system, and damages your DNA. It promotes the development of cancer and acts as a hormone disruptor in human cells. And every time you eat a soy burger, you’re probably getting a hefty dose of it.
Now, even soy in its natural state is somewhat controversial.
- Soy contains extremely high amounts of something we call “anti-nutrients.” These are toxins that literally block the absorption of critical nutrients.
- It’s high in phytoestrogens. In large quantities, these estrogen mimics may act as feminizing agents in men. Get too many phytoestrogens in your diet and it could deplete your manly testosterone levels, pack on the pounds and lead to the development of man-breasts.
- In women, soy phytoestrogens are linked to an increase in breast tissue density and changes in gene expression. Both of these have direct links to breast cancer.
- Soy and soy products are also goitrogens. They can wreak havoc on thyroid function, which is already a big problem in today’s world.
When you put all of this together, it’s clear that Americans are eating the wrong kinds of soy. But that doesn’t mean you should avoid it altogether.
The Japanese Soy Secret
I’m sure you’ve heard about all of the health benefits associated with soy. After all, that’s why you’re eating soy hot dogs and tofu burgers, right?
Well, I’m not going to dispute that soy comes with a wide array of health advantages… if you eat it like the Japanese do.
These folks enjoy only about 10 grams of soy protein daily with their meals. You can get that by eating less than two ounces of natto or tempeh each day– a far cry from the quarter pound of processed tofu burger you would eat at mealtime.
And speaking of natto and tempeh, these are fermented soy foods that the Japanese traditionally eat. Miso and soy sauce are also good sources of fermented soy.
The fermentation process cuts down the levels of phytoestrogens and anti-nutrients. This makes it much easier to digest and absorb all of the healthy vitamins, antioxidants and other nutrients in the soy.
So if you want to get the cancer-fighting, heart protective and blood sugar regulating benefits of soy, take a tip from the Japanese.
Skip the fake soy meats and stick with properly fermented soy products from organic sources – and enjoy it in modest quantities each day.
Patisaul HB, et al. The pros and cons of phytoestrogens. Front Neuroendocrinol. 2010 Oct; 31(4): 400–419.
Shike M, et al. The effects of soy supplementation on gene expression in breast cancer: a randomized placebo-controlled study. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2014 Sep 4;106(9).