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Soy what? Debunking the Soy Myth

Soy what? Debunking the Soy Myth


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Maybe you have heard that soy is the new super food, off to save all vegetarians and vegans from the sad fate of protein deficiency. Or maybe you’ve heard the warning to stay away from the cancer-causing “estrogen mimicker.” Or maybe you’ve heard both and just don’t know what to think. I was once in your shoes. So I did some research and concluded that both arguments are wrong.

After sifting through countless biased articles online, I found that nearly every source that condemned soy could be traced back to the Weston A. Price Foundation (WAPF). The WAPF is a non-profit that advocates a diet high in saturated fats and animal products (meat, butter and raw milk). No wonder they are against soy! This incredibly self-interested source states that “people with high cholesterol live the longest”: a direct contradiction to common sense and research done by the World Health Organization, the highest authority on food-related health issues.

Still, I continued researching. I found that the main criticism of soy is that it contains large amounts of phytoestrogens, an estrogen-like compound found in plants. Although this is true, an extensive report detailing the pros and cons of phytoestrogens found that “for a typical consumer, alarm over soy products is likely unnecessary but so is the belief that a soy-rich diet will alleviate all ills.” Yet again, the age-old adage “everything in moderation” prevails.

When eating soy in moderation, keep in mind that there are two types of soy: fermented and unfermented. Soy that is fermented, or chemically broken down with grains, is advocated by health experts due to its higher nutrient content. Fermented soy products include: tempeh (pictured below), miso, natto and pickled tofu.

Photo by Katie Walsh

Unfermented soy, such as soy milk, tofu, most soy sauces, soy cheese and soy-based meat alternatives are more hotly contested. Unfermented soy lacks many of the nutrients present in its fermented brother, but there are no credible studies that prove it to be of any danger. Still, many unfermented soy products are genetically modified or processed. These products, such as soy cheese, soy yogurt and soy-based meat substitutes, should be avoided not because they are soy, but because they are processed.

Photo by Katie Walsh

Photo by Katie Walsh

Bottom line: feel free to enjoy soy in moderation, and when you do, make sure to buy organic.

More good stuff here:

  • Fact or Fiction: The Negative Calorie Food Fad
  • The Quest for Truth on Quest Bars
  • The War on Sugar
  • Sweeteners Debunked
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View the original post, Soy what? Debunking the Soy Myth, on Spoon University.

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Soy: facts, myths and why it’s in our new recipe

By Sue Klapholz, MD, PhD — VP of Nutrition & Health, Impossible Foods.

Monday, January 7th, 2019

Soy has been consumed for centuries and researched extensively. In fact, over 15,000 peer-reviewed articles have been written about its impact on health and nutrition.

The soybean is notable among plants for its “high quality” protein, and is the only commonly consumed plant protein that is comparable in quality to animal protein.¹ In most cases, “quality” is defined in terms of protein digestibility-corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS), which takes into account the protein’s essential amino acid composition and digestibility. Published PDCAAS values for soy protein range from 0.91 to 1.0, depending upon the specific soy product.² Soy protein concentrate — the ingredient that provides the majority of protein in the new Impossible Burger — has a published PDCAAS of 0.99.³ For reference, beef from cows has a PDCAAS of 0.92.³

Soy is rich in fiber and is also a good source of several essential minerals, including magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, and iron.¹

While the scientific consensus supports the health benefits of soy, concerns have risen about its safety — that have zero or little basis in fact. These include claims that soy causes breast cancer, decreases male fertility and interferes with thyroid function. Though many of them are based in myth, concerns are concerns, and we’ll go through them one by one.


Soy: facts, myths and why it’s in our new recipe

By Sue Klapholz, MD, PhD — VP of Nutrition & Health, Impossible Foods.

Monday, January 7th, 2019

Soy has been consumed for centuries and researched extensively. In fact, over 15,000 peer-reviewed articles have been written about its impact on health and nutrition.

The soybean is notable among plants for its “high quality” protein, and is the only commonly consumed plant protein that is comparable in quality to animal protein.¹ In most cases, “quality” is defined in terms of protein digestibility-corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS), which takes into account the protein’s essential amino acid composition and digestibility. Published PDCAAS values for soy protein range from 0.91 to 1.0, depending upon the specific soy product.² Soy protein concentrate — the ingredient that provides the majority of protein in the new Impossible Burger — has a published PDCAAS of 0.99.³ For reference, beef from cows has a PDCAAS of 0.92.³

Soy is rich in fiber and is also a good source of several essential minerals, including magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, and iron.¹

While the scientific consensus supports the health benefits of soy, concerns have risen about its safety — that have zero or little basis in fact. These include claims that soy causes breast cancer, decreases male fertility and interferes with thyroid function. Though many of them are based in myth, concerns are concerns, and we’ll go through them one by one.


Soy: facts, myths and why it’s in our new recipe

By Sue Klapholz, MD, PhD — VP of Nutrition & Health, Impossible Foods.

Monday, January 7th, 2019

Soy has been consumed for centuries and researched extensively. In fact, over 15,000 peer-reviewed articles have been written about its impact on health and nutrition.

The soybean is notable among plants for its “high quality” protein, and is the only commonly consumed plant protein that is comparable in quality to animal protein.¹ In most cases, “quality” is defined in terms of protein digestibility-corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS), which takes into account the protein’s essential amino acid composition and digestibility. Published PDCAAS values for soy protein range from 0.91 to 1.0, depending upon the specific soy product.² Soy protein concentrate — the ingredient that provides the majority of protein in the new Impossible Burger — has a published PDCAAS of 0.99.³ For reference, beef from cows has a PDCAAS of 0.92.³

Soy is rich in fiber and is also a good source of several essential minerals, including magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, and iron.¹

While the scientific consensus supports the health benefits of soy, concerns have risen about its safety — that have zero or little basis in fact. These include claims that soy causes breast cancer, decreases male fertility and interferes with thyroid function. Though many of them are based in myth, concerns are concerns, and we’ll go through them one by one.


Soy: facts, myths and why it’s in our new recipe

By Sue Klapholz, MD, PhD — VP of Nutrition & Health, Impossible Foods.

Monday, January 7th, 2019

Soy has been consumed for centuries and researched extensively. In fact, over 15,000 peer-reviewed articles have been written about its impact on health and nutrition.

The soybean is notable among plants for its “high quality” protein, and is the only commonly consumed plant protein that is comparable in quality to animal protein.¹ In most cases, “quality” is defined in terms of protein digestibility-corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS), which takes into account the protein’s essential amino acid composition and digestibility. Published PDCAAS values for soy protein range from 0.91 to 1.0, depending upon the specific soy product.² Soy protein concentrate — the ingredient that provides the majority of protein in the new Impossible Burger — has a published PDCAAS of 0.99.³ For reference, beef from cows has a PDCAAS of 0.92.³

Soy is rich in fiber and is also a good source of several essential minerals, including magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, and iron.¹

While the scientific consensus supports the health benefits of soy, concerns have risen about its safety — that have zero or little basis in fact. These include claims that soy causes breast cancer, decreases male fertility and interferes with thyroid function. Though many of them are based in myth, concerns are concerns, and we’ll go through them one by one.


Soy: facts, myths and why it’s in our new recipe

By Sue Klapholz, MD, PhD — VP of Nutrition & Health, Impossible Foods.

Monday, January 7th, 2019

Soy has been consumed for centuries and researched extensively. In fact, over 15,000 peer-reviewed articles have been written about its impact on health and nutrition.

The soybean is notable among plants for its “high quality” protein, and is the only commonly consumed plant protein that is comparable in quality to animal protein.¹ In most cases, “quality” is defined in terms of protein digestibility-corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS), which takes into account the protein’s essential amino acid composition and digestibility. Published PDCAAS values for soy protein range from 0.91 to 1.0, depending upon the specific soy product.² Soy protein concentrate — the ingredient that provides the majority of protein in the new Impossible Burger — has a published PDCAAS of 0.99.³ For reference, beef from cows has a PDCAAS of 0.92.³

Soy is rich in fiber and is also a good source of several essential minerals, including magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, and iron.¹

While the scientific consensus supports the health benefits of soy, concerns have risen about its safety — that have zero or little basis in fact. These include claims that soy causes breast cancer, decreases male fertility and interferes with thyroid function. Though many of them are based in myth, concerns are concerns, and we’ll go through them one by one.


Soy: facts, myths and why it’s in our new recipe

By Sue Klapholz, MD, PhD — VP of Nutrition & Health, Impossible Foods.

Monday, January 7th, 2019

Soy has been consumed for centuries and researched extensively. In fact, over 15,000 peer-reviewed articles have been written about its impact on health and nutrition.

The soybean is notable among plants for its “high quality” protein, and is the only commonly consumed plant protein that is comparable in quality to animal protein.¹ In most cases, “quality” is defined in terms of protein digestibility-corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS), which takes into account the protein’s essential amino acid composition and digestibility. Published PDCAAS values for soy protein range from 0.91 to 1.0, depending upon the specific soy product.² Soy protein concentrate — the ingredient that provides the majority of protein in the new Impossible Burger — has a published PDCAAS of 0.99.³ For reference, beef from cows has a PDCAAS of 0.92.³

Soy is rich in fiber and is also a good source of several essential minerals, including magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, and iron.¹

While the scientific consensus supports the health benefits of soy, concerns have risen about its safety — that have zero or little basis in fact. These include claims that soy causes breast cancer, decreases male fertility and interferes with thyroid function. Though many of them are based in myth, concerns are concerns, and we’ll go through them one by one.


Soy: facts, myths and why it’s in our new recipe

By Sue Klapholz, MD, PhD — VP of Nutrition & Health, Impossible Foods.

Monday, January 7th, 2019

Soy has been consumed for centuries and researched extensively. In fact, over 15,000 peer-reviewed articles have been written about its impact on health and nutrition.

The soybean is notable among plants for its “high quality” protein, and is the only commonly consumed plant protein that is comparable in quality to animal protein.¹ In most cases, “quality” is defined in terms of protein digestibility-corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS), which takes into account the protein’s essential amino acid composition and digestibility. Published PDCAAS values for soy protein range from 0.91 to 1.0, depending upon the specific soy product.² Soy protein concentrate — the ingredient that provides the majority of protein in the new Impossible Burger — has a published PDCAAS of 0.99.³ For reference, beef from cows has a PDCAAS of 0.92.³

Soy is rich in fiber and is also a good source of several essential minerals, including magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, and iron.¹

While the scientific consensus supports the health benefits of soy, concerns have risen about its safety — that have zero or little basis in fact. These include claims that soy causes breast cancer, decreases male fertility and interferes with thyroid function. Though many of them are based in myth, concerns are concerns, and we’ll go through them one by one.


Soy: facts, myths and why it’s in our new recipe

By Sue Klapholz, MD, PhD — VP of Nutrition & Health, Impossible Foods.

Monday, January 7th, 2019

Soy has been consumed for centuries and researched extensively. In fact, over 15,000 peer-reviewed articles have been written about its impact on health and nutrition.

The soybean is notable among plants for its “high quality” protein, and is the only commonly consumed plant protein that is comparable in quality to animal protein.¹ In most cases, “quality” is defined in terms of protein digestibility-corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS), which takes into account the protein’s essential amino acid composition and digestibility. Published PDCAAS values for soy protein range from 0.91 to 1.0, depending upon the specific soy product.² Soy protein concentrate — the ingredient that provides the majority of protein in the new Impossible Burger — has a published PDCAAS of 0.99.³ For reference, beef from cows has a PDCAAS of 0.92.³

Soy is rich in fiber and is also a good source of several essential minerals, including magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, and iron.¹

While the scientific consensus supports the health benefits of soy, concerns have risen about its safety — that have zero or little basis in fact. These include claims that soy causes breast cancer, decreases male fertility and interferes with thyroid function. Though many of them are based in myth, concerns are concerns, and we’ll go through them one by one.


Soy: facts, myths and why it’s in our new recipe

By Sue Klapholz, MD, PhD — VP of Nutrition & Health, Impossible Foods.

Monday, January 7th, 2019

Soy has been consumed for centuries and researched extensively. In fact, over 15,000 peer-reviewed articles have been written about its impact on health and nutrition.

The soybean is notable among plants for its “high quality” protein, and is the only commonly consumed plant protein that is comparable in quality to animal protein.¹ In most cases, “quality” is defined in terms of protein digestibility-corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS), which takes into account the protein’s essential amino acid composition and digestibility. Published PDCAAS values for soy protein range from 0.91 to 1.0, depending upon the specific soy product.² Soy protein concentrate — the ingredient that provides the majority of protein in the new Impossible Burger — has a published PDCAAS of 0.99.³ For reference, beef from cows has a PDCAAS of 0.92.³

Soy is rich in fiber and is also a good source of several essential minerals, including magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, and iron.¹

While the scientific consensus supports the health benefits of soy, concerns have risen about its safety — that have zero or little basis in fact. These include claims that soy causes breast cancer, decreases male fertility and interferes with thyroid function. Though many of them are based in myth, concerns are concerns, and we’ll go through them one by one.


Soy: facts, myths and why it’s in our new recipe

By Sue Klapholz, MD, PhD — VP of Nutrition & Health, Impossible Foods.

Monday, January 7th, 2019

Soy has been consumed for centuries and researched extensively. In fact, over 15,000 peer-reviewed articles have been written about its impact on health and nutrition.

The soybean is notable among plants for its “high quality” protein, and is the only commonly consumed plant protein that is comparable in quality to animal protein.¹ In most cases, “quality” is defined in terms of protein digestibility-corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS), which takes into account the protein’s essential amino acid composition and digestibility. Published PDCAAS values for soy protein range from 0.91 to 1.0, depending upon the specific soy product.² Soy protein concentrate — the ingredient that provides the majority of protein in the new Impossible Burger — has a published PDCAAS of 0.99.³ For reference, beef from cows has a PDCAAS of 0.92.³

Soy is rich in fiber and is also a good source of several essential minerals, including magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, and iron.¹

While the scientific consensus supports the health benefits of soy, concerns have risen about its safety — that have zero or little basis in fact. These include claims that soy causes breast cancer, decreases male fertility and interferes with thyroid function. Though many of them are based in myth, concerns are concerns, and we’ll go through them one by one.



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