The Dangers of Soy
The dangers of soy make it less of a health food and more of a health problem. “Soy is dangerous? But I thought it was supposed to be a health food!” Yes, that’s what we’ve been sold on, but a mountain of evidence points to the contrary.
The soy bean is toxic in its raw form and has to be cooked to be edible. It wasn’t even used as food until about 2500 years ago. And then it was only eaten in small amounts in a fermented form. It did make a good fertilizer though, so it was grown as a crop to be plowed under to replenish the soil.
Today it’s everywhere. From health-food stores to fast-food restaurants. Even if you think you’re not eating it, you probably are. The dangers of soy include:
- Antinutrients: These actually prevent good nutrition. Soy contains:
- Protease Inhibitors that inhibit enzymes that help digest protein.
- Phytates that cause iron deficiencies, block the absorption of zinc, calcium and other minerals.
- Lectins, which often cause problems with the digestive and immune systems, as well as blood clotting.
- Saponins. These break down red blood cells, inhibit some enzymes and can contribute to thyroid enlargement.
- Oxalates can block the absorption of calcium as well as lead to kidney stones and vulvodynia.
- Potential Allergic Reactions: Soy is one of the top 8 allergens today. If you’re allergic to peanuts, you’re probably allergic to soy as well.
- Phytoestrogens: These are plant estrogens that are often seen by the body as Human estrogen and can alter the body’s hormonal balance. Isoflavone (a type of phytoestrogen found in soy) was linked to memory loss, senility and Alzheimer’s in this study.Phytoestrogens can also affect the reproductive system of both men and women. In women, soy consumption can lengthen menstrual cycles. In men, soy can affect fertility, testosterone levels and sex drive. It can also lead to “man boobs.”
- Goitrogens: These block the synthesis of thyroid hormones. Isoflavones found in soy are also goitrogens. They can cause hypothyroidism (low thyroid), which can lead to goiter. They also can inhibit the action of thyroid drugs.
Is All Soy Bad?
Not all soy is bad for you. The fermented soy foods that have been eaten in Asia for a couple of thousand years now are OK, even beneficial when eaten in moderation. These are:
- Soy Sauce (when prepared in the traditional, long-fermentation-time way)
In these soy products the dangers of soy are mostly neutralized by the fermenting process when prepared in traditional, non-highly-processed ways. The fermentation increases the levels of vitamin K and produces good bacteria that helps in digestion. These foods are eaten mostly as a condiment with other foods.