Soy Perfect? Not So Much - The Hidden Dangers of Soy
Do you really know what you are eating? I am not trying to insult you, but unless you are only eating "whole" foods there is always a chance something unexpected is present. Short of reading every label and understanding each ingredient, you run the risk of consuming ingredients you don't want or need.
We all know about sneaky sodium, MSG, saturated fats, preservatives, etc. Did you know that soy, for some, can be a less than healthy choice. "Soy what? I don't eat soy," you say? Maybe you do and don't know it. Surprise! It is an added ingredient in numerous products.
Even if you think you are doing a good thing and eat soy because you read or heard it is the perfect health food, it may not be so perfect for you! I learned this the hard way after consuming soy milk in my coffee and cereal for the past few years. I felt bloated and often had heart palpitations; neither had ever been an issue for me. Luckily, I heard a radio interview with author, Dianne Gregg. She was discussing how her life threatening experience with a soy allergy prompted her to write The Hidden Dangers of Soy.
During the interview, she described what I was experiencing. I ceased using soy milk and started searching product labels for hidden soy. Sure enough, besides the obvious soy milk culprit, I discovered it lurking in my favorite kettle corn popcorn, energy bars, and several cereals. Since then, my diet is soy free and my symptoms are gone.
Dianne has done extensive research on this subject and her mission is to share this crucial information with others. Here is a brief, but fascinating, excerpt from the book:
It's disguised in everything from hamburgers, hot dogs, baby formula, flour, and much more. It's often marketed as low-fat, dairy free, or as a high protein meat substitute for vegetarians. The soy derivatives you need to look for are textured vegetable protein (TVP), partially hydrogenated soybean, soy protein isolate (SPI), hydrolyzed vegetable protein (HVP). One of the dangerous substances in the soybean is phytic acid, also called phytates. These acids block the body of essential minerals like calcium, magnesium, iron and especially zinc. But, you never hear about that.
Her message to everyone is "if you are not feeling like yourself, and have symptoms such as nausea, bloating, gastric disorders, unusual weight gain, palpitations, shortness of breath, or lack of energy, it's worth trying to eliminate soy from your diet for a period of time to see if it is contributing."
Thank you Dianne for sharing your experience and reaching out to help others. The book is an informative, eye-opener, which will have many people saying "so long soy" after reading it.
[The claims made about specific products on or through this show are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent disease. The reviews and opinions provided on this show are for informational purposes only and are not intended as a substitute for advice from your physician or other health care professional. Please consult with your health-care professional before taking or administering any new product to yourself or anyone else.]
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@Janine: You are welcome. You will be surprised at all the foods you find soy ingredients hiding in!
Posted by: Luci Weston | September 2009 at 09:57 AM
Thanks for this important message! I was totally unaware of these dangers, especially given the promotion of soy as a healthy alternative. I will look into buying this book and examining what my family eats.
Posted by: Janine N | September 2009 at 09:52 AM
@Rivergirl: The more I learn, the more I am shocked by the mixed messages out there from the soy industry.
Again, this very morning, I pulled out a box of oatmeal from the pantry and sure enough, soy is in there!
Posted by: Luci Weston | September 2009 at 10:47 AM
I'm afraid I'm not much of a soy fan. Usually when I see the word...I run.
Posted by: Rivergirl | September 2009 at 08:25 AM