I get asked a lot about soy and soy products.
Soybeans are legumes, and while they are less offensive than grains, I don’t recommend them for a number of reasons. Generally, anything that needs to be soaked, sprouted, denatured and cooked before it can be consumed should make you question if it’s a good idea to eat. 🤔
They contain lectins (a plant’s toxic defense) and other anti-nutrients which can lead to leaky gut, inflammation and an autoimmune response, as well as interfere with your absorption of crucial minerals such as calcium, magnesium, potassium and zinc (we need all of these).
Soy is also known to be an obesogen (causing obesity), estrogenic (disrupting estrogen function), and a goitrogenic (causing goiters). There’s evidence that it increases fat storage and decreases fat burning as well as disrupts endocrine (hormone) and thyroid function.
94 percent of all soy grown in the US is genetically modified and that is what is used in the processed products containing soy (it’s in practically everything!) These are the soy products to definitely avoid. Check the labels when shopping, or better yet, chose foods without labels.
Fermented organic soy products are the only way to go, such as tempeh, miso, natto and soy sauce (look for gluten free). The fermentation process kills off the lectins and other anti-nutrients. These are the soy products that the Japanese eat, but in surprisingly small amounts. Tip: If you use soy sauce for cooking you might want to try coconut aminos – same flavor but no soy (win win).
I see recommendations for soy menopausal supplements for hot flashes but many women have found that if they remove soy from their diet, they have less hot flashes and night sweats. Cutting sugar and reducing stress helps, too.