Is soy truly the health food that many in the health food and health industry would lead you to believe? My personal opinion may challenge the viewpoint of many vegetarians who choose to use soy as one of their primary sources of protein. But more and more doctors and other nutrition experts are agreeing that non-fermented soy should be avoided by most people.
Fermented forms of soy such as Tempe, Nato and Miso might be ok and actually healthy however Tofu is not fermented and should be avoided. There are several reasons why you should avoid soy. Most soy is genetically modified and GM foods should be avoided for reasons I will discuss in another article but in short it is because you are consuming things that have never existed before in nature and so it is unknown how our bodies will react to them. But even organically grown soy causes problems for people’s health.
Soy is full of Trypsin Inhibitors which is an important digestive enzyme that allows people to properly digest protein. So eating soy lowers your ability to digest and benefit from protein. Soy also contains a lot of Goitrogen which is a substance that impairs your thyroid from functioning correctly which regulates how much fat you store in your body.
The next issue with soy is that is contains Phytic Acid which is a type of acid that impairs your body’s ability to absorb minerals, which for most people is not a good thing. It also contains Phytoestrogens that may be causing weight problems, especially to young infants.
So how can you avoid eating or feeding soy? The most important is to avoid feeding children soy infant formula. Infants that are fed this formula have been shown to have much more estrogen in their bodies helping to cause the infant obesity explosion.
Another thing to avoid is soy protein which is not something that occurs naturally but is created in factories using acid and aluminum containers and they often add a lot of MSG. This can be presents in much fast food and processed food so always check the labels.
To recap, the safe form of soy is fermented organic soy like Nato, Miso and Tempe but not Tofu. As always you need to make sure you do a lot of your own research on the food that you eat as it will have both short and long term effects on your physical and mental health.
If you feel overwhelmed by all the conflicting information about food and nutrition I highly suggest you take a look at the Paleo Diet. It is the diet that humans naturally evolved to survive and thrive one. I’ve written a free introductory guide book about the Paleo Diet which you can get from my site.