I have a history with Soya bean, good bad and ugly. When I got married in 2008, I and hubby both were doing our postgraduate training. Due to erratic schedules, we often ended up eating late. My favorite snack was a glass of cold milk and a cream biscuit. Now, this came to such a pass that I was having 1 liter of milk a day. Skimmed milk was not always available. Plus the packaged variety was expensive. We were med students saving money for our own home.
But I was gaining weight. This I didn’t like. Because that meant restricted eating out and no chocolates. So I thought I will shift to soymilk. A very popular brand had delicious chocolate flavored variety. I loved it.
Decreased dairy. Started soya bean diet. Great, soya milk benefits, right?Not really.
Back then I didn’t really research what I was putting in my body. Luckily my hubby was more aware. Back then soya was the greatest high protein health food. A dream food.Cheap and high quality, with only a few high-quality research talking about the negatives.There is more source of hidden soya that you never knew. The effect of soya the good bad and ugly has as many stories, as there are stars in the sky.
The 3 main things which determine the effect of soya :
Amount: Not more than 6 gram per day(1 teaspoon roughly)
Type of soya: Fermentation products are preferred.
Age: Better avoid in children until discussed with a pediatrician.
The 10 truths about soya bean nutrition
# Truth 1
Soya milk benefits are a myth. Soy milk is the fastest way to obesity, hypothyroidism. When you have tasty soya milk it’s very easy to drink a lot. That way our daily soy intake is more than the amount recommended in a year.
# Truth 2
Next soya shock.Since it’s a cheap source of first-class protein. In fact, it’s the only plant source of complete protein. It’s added in many packaged food which shows enhanced protein content. You have more soya in your diet than you knew. It’s present in paneer chunks (they will not tell you) and many packaged bakery products, including instant noodles.
Soya is a known common food allergen. Food allergies never go away. They just become worse and you don’t know why.
But What’s soya bean actually?
The bean of soya is used to make soya oil, tofu, soya lecithin(added in baby food), soya milk.That’s the bad part of soya.The soya that you eat is a byproduct of soya oil and was initially used strictly as animal feed,chickens, turkeys, pigs, cows, and even fish.
The soya bean plant due to its high-quality nitrogen was used to improve soil quality during rotation of crops.In Asian countries, it has been used for centuries but mostly as fermented products. Soya sauce, miso, tempeh. But even in China, Japan they don’t have more than 8 gram of soya product per day.
What does soya have?
- Phytates and other antinutrients(nutrient blockers)
The Good of soya: soyabean benefits
- Cheap high-quality protein source
- May help in improving bone health in postmenopausal women(controversial).
- Maybe protective against breast cancer and prostate cancer.Research is going on.
- Helps with certain menopausal problems.
The Bad and the ugly of soya.
- Soya has certain nutrient blockers
These are compounds which prevent your body from utilizing certain nutrients present in soya and other food.
These compounds are present in most beans and pulses. They form insoluble complexes with calcium iron zinc , iodine and prevents their absorption in the body. Soya has the highest Phytates among most grains and pulses.It does not break down with soaking or slow cooking(The way we remove Phytates from pulses)The only way to break it down is Fermentation. Soya milk, soya nuggets, soya granules, and soya dust have high Phytate levels.
The raw soya product is horrible to taste and smell. They add artificial flavorings, preservatives, sweeteners, emulsifiers, and synthetic nutrients. The cattle feed makes a tasty meat substitute for us. Just imagine.D oesn’t it make you want to take out every bit of soya from your kitchen? I did.
My kitchen is a Soya Free zone.
Free from soya nuggets, chunks, soya dust or soya milk.Even those promoted by celebs. But soy sauce, miso tempeh has much fewer problems.Tofu is in between these two as it is formed by a separate process.So yes, you can still have these but in moderation.
Soya protein isolates need:
- Acid wash
- Alkaline baths
The journey to isolate the soya protein makes it impossible to digest. It can get rid of many but not all the antinutrients. Imagine what’s going into your body as soya nuggets and soya chaap!In a diet where soya is the main protein source, FDA suggests fortification with extra methionine, lysine, vitamins, and mineral. So does that make this a good option?
# Truth 7
Health problems by overuse of soya
- Thyroid problems
Related :Hypothyroidism prevention diet
- Male infertility. Lower spermatogenesis counts in men on a majorly soya-based diet. Lower testosterone.
- Irregular menstrual bleeding, endometriosis polyps
- Kidney stones: Soya also has oxalate which with calcium forms insoluble compounds and cause kidney stones.
- Brain atrophy. Research is going on regarding nature and process.
# Truth 8
Soya is present as the major protein source in most of the low lactose baby formulas. Don’t ever forget to read the label. Should you give soya to children? Soya has phytoestrogens. The good which protects against hot flushes cam cause many problems in children. It’s like giving them growth hormone ( HGH) supplementation.
All problems in adults are exacerbated in children. Baby girls may show sign of puberty very early. Cases of puberty happening at 3 years has made doctors careful about giving soy-based baby food.
I stopped drinking my favorite chocolate soya milk. Soya has a market share of 2 million in 1980 and 1 billion in the USA now. Do you think they are going to stop producing something which is making them rich? Do you think the people who produce soya milk drink it? Do you think their children have soya?
Think again. Moderation is always the key. Soya is not great, but it’s not evil in small amounts. The problem is knowing the right kind to have and in the right amount. What’s your opinion on the good bad and ugly of soya? Comment below to let me know.
Updated : October 2018
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