Soy Foods-Our Hormone Booster

Health Benefits Of Soy Foods

Soy beans and foods related to it like bean curd and soy milk were found to contain several compounds that may reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer, help lower cholesterol and ease some discomfort of menopause.


We all know that heart diseases and strokes are related to having high cholesterol. Eating more soy foods may help lower our cholesterol levels. Look at the Japanese people. Their men have the world's lowest rate of death from heart disease followed by their women in second. One reason might be because Japanese consumes about 24 pounds of soy food per person per year, that is about one ounce a day. And Japanese live longer than people anywhere else in the world.


Researchers believe that a class of compounds called phytoestrogens present in soy foods is the key to its healing power. Phytoestrogens like genistein and daidzein are the weaker versions of the natural estrogen produced by women. They block the negative effects of natural estrogens and supplement them when they are low. Soy phytoestrogens which mimics a woman's natural estrogen may help to reduce the effects of hormones in the body and lower activity in the body could mean a lower risk of developing breast cancer as estrogen is believed to fuel the growth of breast tumors.


Consuming a lot of soy foods may lengthened the menstrual cycle of women. Every woman experiences a surge in estrogen at the beginning of her menstrual cycle. Throughout her lifetime, these surges expose the woman's body to large amounts of estrogen which could cells to mutate and lead to cancer. By lengthening the menstrual cycle, experts believe it reduces the frequency of these surges and a woman's lifetime exposure to the hormone.


Researches also believe that a diet rich in soy may help reduce the harmful effects of testosterone. Testosterone is the male hormone which is believed to cause the growth of cancerous cells in the prostate gland. Soy foods inhibit the effects of testosterone and help shut off the effects that causes cancer to grow.


Apart from phyestrogens soy foods also provide us with proteins and calcium. While soy foods are moderately high in fat, most of it is polyunsaturated and contain little of the artery clogging saturated fat found in meats and dairy foods.


When cooking soy food, such as bean curd, add them late in the cooking process as high temperature for a long period of time may destroy and eliminate its nutritional benefits.  

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