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Dr. Gregory Pais, ND
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Home arrow Blog arrow IF YOU MUST EAT SOY
Science Daily March 6, 2008
Over the last 10 years there has been a huge push to eat soy foods. This advertising blitz has been led by Archer Daniels Midland, one of the largest processors of soybeans in the world. Soy anything is generally perceived to be good no matter if it's fried, salted, sweetened, or hydrogenated. This is of course a mistake as these preparations are anything but healthy.

You should also be aware that soy is high in phytic acid, a substance that blocks the uptake of important minerals like calcium, magnesium, and iron. Which is interesting considering that it's promoted for women's health. Soy also presents a problem for anyone with thyroid disease. Then of course there's the fact that almost all commercial soy is genetically modified and heavily pesticided. Which is why I think it is one of the most common food sensitivities. Soy formula is a common baby formula but I think this is a serious nutritional mistake and not healthy for infants.

Generally I don't recommend soy foods unless they are made from organic soybeans. Even then I usually only recommend miso, a fermented soybean paste, and tempeh, a cultured food made from split soybeans. Which is why I was pleased to hear of two new studies that have shown that fermenting soy dramatically reduces its potential allergenicity, and also increases the number of essential amino acids in soy products.

When soy products were fermented, immunoreactivity was reduced by as much as 99%, according to tests that compared the blood plasma reactions for both fermented and unfermented soy products. Fermentation also improved the essential amino acid composition in the soy products and produced new peptides that may be beneficial. This was attributed to partial digestion of large soybean peptides by enzymes secreted by the microorganisms used in fermentation.


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