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How Much Soy is Too Much?

I’ve read the articles that talk badly about soy and I’ve read enough proof to believe it somewhat. However, I have a delima.

For breakfast, I usually need something quick, ready and easy. Now, I used to drink a Meal Replacement shake, however, I found that after a couple of years of doing that, my body started to reject it. Not sure why, but I’d start to get stomach cramps and throw up after drinking any protein or meal replacement shakes. So, I stopped drinking them. I went to the Doc and we ruled out lactose intolerance. We actually couldn’t figure out what it was with the shakes, but we did narrow it down to the shakes that my stomach was rejecting. I tried everything from just Whey Isolate shakes to Muscle Milk, to a few other MRP’s that I found on the market. My stomach was rejecting ALL of them and I kind of got sick of throwing up after drinking a shake. :slight_smile:

What I started eating in the morning was a South Beach Diet Meal Replacement Bar… They’re very yummy, not amazingly expensive and have 20 grams of protein… The only problem is that it’s 100% soy protein. So, I went out looking for an alternative… something with Whey in it. I found very few that weren’t crammed with sugar and if they weren’t crammed with sugar, they tasted like my remote control or couch.

I’d like to continue to eat the South Beach MRB’s, but I am worried about the effects of soy protein. I’m just curious if having 1 or 2 bars a morning would be enough to have a bad reaction to soy, or if it’s a legitimate amount? If so, can anyone suggest an MRB that tastes somewhat good, isn’t crammed with sugar and uses Whey or some other protein besides Soy?

Thanks!

I had heard for years in passing things like “men shouldn’t consume soy, turns you into a woman” or some such, but no facts, and I never did a lot of research.

A few years ago a lost a good deal of weight by using Clif and other soy-based bars, because they are good tasting, cheap, convenient, and easy to control your caloric and nutritional intake. I was having 2 or 3 every day (400-600 cals total), then eating dinner normally with the family. Worked like a charm.

Then I had a physical, doc tells me I’m showing underactive thyroid, and gave me one cycle of low dose Synthroid. I of course, freak out that something’s abby-normal, and start researching. Lo and behold, soy has been indicated to have a direct and detrimental impact on thyroid function. I was having symptoms of frequent (almost daily) headaches and fatigue (needing a short nap after work before dinner).

Needless to say, I stopped soy cold turkey, and only buy bars and shakes that are all or almost all milk-protein based. My next test was weeks after I ran out of synthroid. (never renewed). My levels were back to normal, and my fatigue and headaches have gone away.

Except for soy sauce, soy and I have parted ways. I found a chart that showed that the concentrates and isoloates (used in bars and shakes) have much more of the bad stuff than tempeh or tofu, but I stay away from it all.

[quote]squeezer wrote:
I had heard for years in passing things like “men shouldn’t consume soy, turns you into a woman” or some such, but no facts, and I never did a lot of research.

A few years ago a lost a good deal of weight by using Clif and other soy-based bars, because they are good tasting, cheap, convenient, and easy to control your caloric and nutritional intake. I was having 2 or 3 every day (400-600 cals total), then eating dinner normally with the family. Worked like a charm.

Then I had a physical, doc tells me I’m showing underactive thyroid, and gave me one cycle of low dose Synthroid. I of course, freak out that something’s abby-normal, and start researching. Lo and behold, soy has been indicated to have a direct and detrimental impact on thyroid function. I was having symptoms of frequent (almost daily) headaches and fatigue (needing a short nap after work before dinner).

Needless to say, I stopped soy cold turkey, and only buy bars and shakes that are all or almost all milk-protein based. My next test was weeks after I ran out of synthroid. (never renewed). My levels were back to normal, and my fatigue and headaches have gone away.

Except for soy sauce, soy and I have parted ways. I found a chart that showed that the concentrates and isoloates (used in bars and shakes) have much more of the bad stuff than tempeh or tofu, but I stay away from it all. [/quote]

Squeezer,

Thank you so much for your input. Quite helpful to hear that happened to someone first hand.

This article was posted about 3 years ago on T-Nation

http://www.T-Nation.com/findArticle.do?article=302poison2

Stopped me from eating soy all together. Its scary.

When you start crying to chick flicks.

Did you try egg protein shakes? You might be able to get back on whey later.

I pretty much stay away from anything with soy in it except for soy sauce, which really doesn’t count. But I do have to say that I love edamame. Steamed with some sea salt or dry roasted edamame, not roasted soy bean. Any risks in consuming this once a week?

I was a big soy user 3 years ago and than red the article series here on T-Nation, and red more research about that subject after. I than stop eating any soy in my diet, guess what I got leaner, bigger and more energized than ever. I now only use soy sauce in moderation for flavoring when on a restricted diet, thats pretty much it. Look really closely on labels because soy is everywhere now.

As I was telling a friend the other day, have you noticed that vegan men who get all their protein from soy tend to look like female runway fashion models?

There’s probably a lot of missinformation about soy, mostly because of its phytoestrogen content.

However, according to this study:

http://www.dietaryfiberfood.com/phytoestrogen.php

Flaxseed (and I’d guess flaxseed oil as well) actually contains even more phytoestrogen than soy.

I’d really like to hear what John Berardi has to say about this, since he’s actually an expert.

[quote]jjoseph_x wrote:
There’s probably a lot of missinformation about soy, mostly because of its phytoestrogen content.

However, according to this study:

http://www.dietaryfiberfood.com/phytoestrogen.php

Flaxseed (and I’d guess flaxseed oil as well) actually contains even more phytoestrogen than soy.

I’d really like to hear what John Berardi has to say about this, since he’s actually an expert.

[/quote]

ya i would like to hear an expert chime in on this as well

[quote]toughcasey wrote:
jjoseph_x wrote:
There’s probably a lot of missinformation about soy, mostly because of its phytoestrogen content.

However, according to this study:

http://www.dietaryfiberfood.com/phytoestrogen.php

Flaxseed (and I’d guess flaxseed oil as well) actually contains even more phytoestrogen than soy.

I’d really like to hear what John Berardi has to say about this, since he’s actually an expert.

ya i would like to hear an expert chime in on this as well[/quote]

I started a thread on the subject on Dr. Berardi’s Precision Nutrition site.

If anyone’s interested, and, if Dr. Berardi doesn’t object, I’ll at least summarize some of the discussion here.

dont know if this help…

http://health.msn.com/menshealth/articlepage.aspx?cp-documentid=100100459

Flaxseeds won?t lower cholesterol the way soy can, and they lag far behind in vitamin E content (0.08 mg/gm vs. 0.94 mg/gm). They do generate much more enterolactone and enterodiol, but soy has other phytoestrogens. And in terms of actual cancer prevention, there is even less hard evidence supporting flaxseeds than soy. Flaxseeds do show some activity against breast cancer in rats, but there is no assurance that women will respond in the same way. Estrogens reduce the growth of prostate cells, but the effects of flaxseeds are mixed. A 5% flaxseed diet reduces prostate growth in rats, but a 10% diet increases testosterone levels and has the opposite effect. In mice that are genetically altered to increase the risk of prostate cancer, a 5% flaxseed diet appears to reduce that risk."

Dude, if the label says “South Beach Diet”, why would you imagine that it’s food for more than chicks and Richard Simmons?

They make protein powders of Rice, Peas and Hemp. Any of these in combination would provide you with a more complete protein (Soy does not) as well as getting to keep your gonads.

[quote]jjoseph_x wrote:
toughcasey wrote:
jjoseph_x wrote:
There’s probably a lot of missinformation about soy, mostly because of its phytoestrogen content.

However, according to this study:

http://www.dietaryfiberfood.com/phytoestrogen.php

Flaxseed (and I’d guess flaxseed oil as well) actually contains even more phytoestrogen than soy.

I’d really like to hear what John Berardi has to say about this, since he’s actually an expert.

ya i would like to hear an expert chime in on this as well

I started a thread on the subject on Dr. Berardi’s Precision Nutrition site.

If anyone’s interested, and, if Dr. Berardi doesn’t object, I’ll at least summarize some of the discussion here.
[/quote]

Any comment yet from the good doctor on this topic?

With regards to edamame - I love that stuff but avoid it. Soy beans are not very digestible unless they’re fermented. I’m all about tempeh and miso, but avoid tofu, edamame and defintely soy milk and any type of soy concentrate or isolate, or soy convenience/junk foods.

Edamame isn’t terrible, but don’t eat a lot. If you want to eat it weekly, keep the volume low - don’t eat a plate of it weekly.

Last time I ate edamame I had some pretty bad stomach cramps actually.