It seems that many people are trying to add more soy into their diet, since it is a replacement for animal protein in foods and fodder. Soy protein is derived from soybeans. However, soy is a key ingredient in livestock feed. Here Marygrace Taylor and Kate Rockwood, GoodHouseKeeping.com, reflect on another perspective regarding science backed answer to the pros and cons of soy:
“Depending on what you eat everyday, soy-based foods like tofu, soy milk, miso, tempeh, and edamame may sound like classic “health” foods. But for vegetarians, vegans, and other dieters who have come to rely on this common meat alternative in their diets, grocery store items rich in soy have developed scary reputations for a purported “disease risk.” Some previously published research can be downright scary, with claims that increased soy can mess with your hormones, the thyroid, and possibly cause cancer.
So which side of this debate is actually right — does soy deserve that health halo, or should you swear the stuff off of your shopping list for good?
As is often the case when it comes to nutrition, the answers aren’t black and white. But for the most part, “Soy-based foods are some of the best foods you can eat on the planet,” says Jaclyn London, MS, RD, CDN. “Soybeans provide a plant-based protein source; a slew of vitamins and minerals crucial for reducing risk of chronic disease; and fiber that helps you fill up and feel satisfied.”
While some small, poorly designed studies have led to inflammatory headlines over the years, it’s important to think about all foods in context. Eating plant-based foods in their closest-to-nature (a.k.a. least processed) form? Super nutritious. But taking supplements made with the compounds in soybean? Not so much.
“That’s where we’ve seen health risks,” London explains. “In fact, it’s not uncommon to see research reflecting consuming compounds in supplement form rather than eating the foods themselves.” Those supplements are linked to increased disease risk, while real, whole foods are linked to decreased disease risk.
Why Soy Is Controversial
t’s take a trip back to the 1990s, when soy foods first started really hitting it big. At the time, many experts believed that soy had the power to fight problems like obesity, heart disease, and even . After all, people in Asia eat a ton of soy. And studies showed that these populations had significantly lower rates of obesity, heart disease, and breast cancer compared to people in the U.S. Clearly, soy was the miracle food, right?
Not necessarily. Those studies only looked at associations, not causation. Just because people who consume a lot of soy also happen to be healthier than people who don’t eat soy doesn’t automatically mean that soy is the key to their superior state. Countless other factors — from genetics, to lifestyle, to the rest of their diet — could also play a role.
When researchers began taking a closer look to find out what made soy so healthy, they ran into some surprises. Soy, it turned out, contains estrogen-like compounds called isoflavones. And some findings suggested that these compounds could promote the growth of some cancer cells, impair female fertility, and mess with thyroid function. Some health experts also trash-talk soy because of its potential to be an endocrine disrupter — meaning it can mimic estrogen in the body, which may lead to a hormone overload.
At the same time, other studies were still showing that soy consumption could cure high cholesterol and help women cope with the symptoms of menopause. And Dawn Jackson Blatner, RDN, a Chicago-based dietitian, says that while whole soy does contain natural plant estrogens, they’re much weaker than actual human hormones, and shouldn’t case you worry. Add it all up, and you can see how this little green bean became a source of mass dietary confusion.”
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Read More … Article Source: https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/health/diet-nutrition/a20707020/is-soy-good-or-bad-for-you/
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