Ahh...where to begin. I should start by saying that I used to consume a lot of soy. I went vegetarian at 16, and like most people, didn't really do a lot of research on what was truly healthy. I'd heard that soy was healthy, lower in fat and could still provide my body with the nutrients I needed that I wasn't getting from meat. What. A. Joke. I ate processed, horrible meat substitutes in the forms of various tofus, meatless meatballs, chick'n strips, beef strips, etc. I also ate a lot of carbs. I didn't know it at the time, but I was poisoning myself.
It is important to note that two of America's biggest cash crops are soy and corn. Not to mention that rain forests are being torn down for soy to be grown in South America (eating soy ain't so environmentally friendly now is it?). From soy and corn we get a lot of terrible food additives, cheap corn and soy oil, high fructose corn syrup, soy flour, etc. It's no wonder that soy is pushed as a health food, there's a lot of it in this country that needs to be sold. It is mostly grown by giant factory farms that want to make money. Their interests are not your health, their interests are solely based on how much they can profit off of you.
I have a lot of beef with soy. First, is it extremely processed. How do you think it goes from a soy bean, to a white, mushy block of tofu? Or a bean to a fake meatball? Or made into soy milk? Processing the crap out of it. We already know we shouldn't be eating processed foods. Here are some specific issues I have with soy:
- Turns out, MSG, a neuro toxin is formed when soy is processed
- Lowers testosterone in men
- Has been linked to breast cancer
- Most soy is genetically modified
- Interferes with protein digestion
- Interferes with mineral absorption
- High in aluminum, a toxic heavy metal (this is also why I use aluminum free deodorant)
- The isoflavones in soy promote thyroid suppression
- Soy has caused: infertility, cognitive disorders, a weakened immune system, poor digestion and a host of other health issues
What it comes down to is soy is toxic. Whether it is organic or GMO (though if you're going to eat soy, organic is the better option). It drives me nuts to see people in health food stores buying soy products. They're clearly making an effort to eat healthier, but they're just missing the mark entirely. By no means am I saying you need to eat grass-fed meat. What I am saying, is that you should not be eating soy. If you're wondering why Asian nations are healthier than Western nations and are known to consume soy, it is because the soy they eat is fermented (like is miso soup. I can dominate some miso soup). Fermenting the soy eliminates a lot of the health risks associated with soy. And also, most Asian cultures do not consume massive amounts of soy. Americans absolutely consume more. For vegetarians or vegans, there are whole, unprocessed, non toxic forms of protein. For me, however, I found that eating grass-fed meat from a local farm was the best option. The animals are free ranging and treated well. They're not cooped up in some farm and fed soy and corn (as all factory farmed animals are, which in turn makes the toxic to consume). I do not eat soy at all. Which kind of sucked at first, as I actually do enjoy tofu dishes. But consuming soy is not worth the health risks associated with it. If you're considering eating healthier, or eating less meat, please do some research on soy. For more information you can go here for some very well researched articles.