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Is Soya Safe?

Do you consume soya?

This is a question regarding health concerns and soya which one of my readers emailed me, plus my answer. If you consume a lot of soya, you may find it fascinating.

Question :

I have been reading (from several sources) that Soya is not safe to eat, as it affects the thyroid gland amongst other things, is this so? I drink a lot of Soya milk and eat some Soya products as well.

I despise other milks so if I can’t drink Soya milk then it’s back to dairy for me, which I don’t want to do.

Answer:

Soya bean protein is a excellent alternative source of protein to meat and eggs and has been favoured by vegetarians as a excellent alternative to meat. This is in evidence in our supermarkets with the huge range of meat alternative products which Soya tends to be the base ingredient. The production of Soya beans is now a billion dollar industry with the United States being the major producer. Soya oil is a poly-unsaturated oil, it contains the essential fatty acids – linoleic and linolenic, and it is free from cholesterol and has a low level of saturated fatty acids. Soya beans is high in B vitamins, iron, calcium, zinc and it is claim that it reduces the risk of heart disease, prostrate and breast cancer.

With these facts it is plain to see why Soya is thought of as a ‘super food’ but new research has place its ‘super’ status in doubt. The main concerns with Soya are the health problems which can be cause by high amounts of phytoestrogens and phytates which are present in Soya. High amounts of phytoestrogens are known to depress thyroid function and consuming large amounts of Soya can lead to goitre, hypothyroidism, and auto-immune thyroid disease.

My advice would be, if you like Soya, keep to low amounts of Soya in your diet. This Soya must be from an organic refined source, a lot of Soya today comes from GM crops and Soya containing products use a lot of chemicals in their production. Safe Soya products are fermented Soya products, such as soy sauce, tempeh and miso. If you are pregnant, suffer from thyroid disorders, digestive problems such as loose stools, bloating or irritable bowel syndrome, cysts, tumours, parasites, excess mucus or yeast sensitivity it would be wise to avoid Soya based products.

What are the alternatives to milk and Soya milk?

Well you can try goat’s milk, sheep’s milk, almond milk, rice milk and oat milk.

Stewart Hare C.H.Ed Dip NutTh

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