Soybeans are legumes from East Asia that are now largely produced in the United States, therefore, genetically modified. The soy crop is mostly harvested for production of soybean oil… fat. The rest also known as the waste is used to feed livestock, which in turn, gets passed on to their meat. A large portion of this waste is processed to produce soy protein.
Soy contains phytoestrogens. Large amounts of it can disrupt estrogen hormone levels in the human body. In women, this can cause irregular menstrual cycles and in some severe cases breast cancer. In men, this can cause a reduced testosterone level as well as diminished physical strength and cause sexual imbalances.
There is significant evidence, that soy-based baby formula can prove harmful to babies. In girls, issues such as increased breast tissue, likelihood to hit puberty at a younger age as well as a longer and more painful menstruation in adulthood. In addition, the unnaturally high content of manganese in soy-based baby formula may lead to neurological problems and high traces of aluminum can also cause all sorts of problems.
Soy plays with your intestinal absorption. The high levels of phytic acids inhibit the ability to absorb many minerals like zinc, calcium, magnesium, vitamins B-12 and vitamin D, and much more. Furthermore, soy can block the digestion of certain proteins, as well.
Soy becomes an issue with excess; the poison is in the dosage. Large amounts can cause all these issues, yet in moderation it is probably fine. Yet all processed foods contain some form of soy. Be vigilant, always check for and stay away from these ingredients: soy lecithin, soy protein, and types of vegetable protein.
If you want to consume soy, look for fermented, organic whole, or GMO free soybeans. These are the best type of soy, and as always, moderation is key. Note that Westerners use GMO soy as the foundation of meals, like tofu while Asians culture uses non-GMO soy as condiments such as miso.
Soybeans still contain a vast range of important vitamins and minerals. It is a pretty good source of protein, better than other plant proteins although not as good as meat or eggs. Be aware, that organic whole soybeans can be nutritious, while processed and GMO soy-derived products aren’t nutritious at all.