The GAPS Diet does not allow soy (because soy does not help when you are trying to heal your gut), but I was anti-soy before GAPS. Why am I so against this supposed health food?
I highly recommend reading this book for more details:
Soy is touted as a health food, and people are eating it in place of meat. The assumption is that because Japanese people eat soy, we should too–and then we’ll be healthy!
Here are the problems with that:
- In Ancient China and Japan it was known that soy was a poison if it was not fermented. I just confirmed this with my long-time Japanese friend, and she said to never eat soy raw, and, matter-of-factly, "it’s poison."
- In America, our soy products are “acid washed” or acid hydrolyzed and then labeled “Fermented.” In Japan, this label means that the soy was actually fermented for about 18 months. This kind of fermentation breaks down the phytic acid and the estrogen in the soy beans–which are both toxic to our bodies.
- In America, 90% of the soy is genetically modified and "Round up Ready."
- Most packaged foods contain some form of unfermented soy. “Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein” is soy (note that there was recently a recall on products containing HVP).
- Anybody who is eating a diet that consists of any packaged foods (bottled salad dressings, even if organic, cookies, crackers, granola bars, chips, bouillon, soups, etc.) is eating an abundance of soy!! See my article The Myth of Moderation: Soy, for more details.
Soy contains isoflavinoid phytoestrogens (read: ESTROGEN). The phytic acid in soy is a natural chelater & steals important minerals from your body. The health effects of unfermented soy are greatly numbered (all of these links are to scholarly articles and medical studies):
- Soy causes breast cancer tumor growth.
- Soy decreases blood testosterone levels and testicle size in males.
- A diet rich in soy decreases sperm count.
- Soy protein powder and soy isoflavone pills negatively impacts biochemical bone turnover in women over 60.
- Soy was found to be potentially protective against breast cancer tumor growth in Asian cultures, but NOT in Western cultures (READ: fermented vs. unfermented soy! Western cultures do not ferment their soy!)
- Small doses of soy over only a few weeks time can cause major hyperthyroidism problems.
- Eating tofu can cause lower cognitive function and brain atrophy in men.
- Babies consuming soy formula have 13,000 to 22,000 times higher estrogen levels in their blood than babies who are breast fed or fed cow milk formula. They are taking in 6 to 11 times MORE soy isoflavens than the level that has a hormonal (estrogen) effect on adults. This is HUGE!!!
- Soy consumption atrophies the thymus and decreases immune function.
- Children who consumed soy formula as infants have a significantly greater risk of autoimmune thyroid disease.
- Soy consumption significantly increases the risk of bladder cancer.
- Soybean (and wheat) farmers are more likely to have Leukemia than the general population.
- Soy has been underestimated as a cause for anaphalaxis. The peanut is most often blamed, but often times the cause is actually soy.
There are many studies that show that soy "MAY" help prevent various types of cancer. Note that these studies were done in the 1990’s or early 2000’s and were very likely paid for by GMO Soy Giant Monsanto. All of the recent studies (2010, 2011) are showing a strong connection between phytoestrogens from soy and cancer RISK.
Keep in mind that in Asian countries, soy is fermented an eaten as a condiment with *whole foods.* They eat it often, yes, but it is fermented–and they eat large amounts of seafood, far less sugar than our country, and lots of fresh veggies. They are not consuming soy in the form of soy milk, soy bars, or hydrolyzed vegetable protein.
Lastly, please read about the Chicago inmates who were fed a high-soy diet, and the adverse health effects they faced, and the lawsuit that followed…
I don’t think that health risks are only limited to *high consumption,* I believe that even small amounts of soy create health risk. For my family, we avoid it completely. You make the choice for your family. Please click on the many links above and inform yourself!
This post was shared at Vintage Healthy Home Link Up.