Soy and soy products can be found in a number of forms. From veggie burgers to soy milk to roasted soybeans, incorporating soy into your life shouldn’t be too hard. Health food stores also sell a variety of fake meats made with soy protein. This means you don’t need to give up bacon, sausage or burgers –You simply need to buy the meat-free alternative. You’ll be skipping the saturated fat and getting the benefits of soy at the same time.
The isoflavones in soy provide natural protection against cancer. While studies haven’t been conclusive so far, it seems that a particular isoflavone in soy can halter the regrowth of cancer cells. Soy seems particularly promising against prostate cancer. Many experts are unsure of whether soy is a positive or a negative addition to your diet if you’re at risk of breast cancer. If you don’t have a history of breast cancer in your family, however, soy seems to reduce the risk of developing all other forms of cancer.
Eating at least 60 grams of soy a day can help reduce hot flashes and other post-menopausal symptoms. People who eat soy regularly experience less calcium loss, which in turn helps them maintain bone density. As such, consumption of soy can help prevent or slow down osteoporosis. Soy is being studied as a healthy alternative to hormone replacement therapy, since it helps regulate hormones and lessen the severity and frequency of night sweats and other uncomfortable menopausal symptoms.
The same hormonal imbalances that cause symptoms in menopause can also affect your body during and just before your period. Regular soy intake seems to help balance mood and improve breast tenderness, two of the most common symptoms of PMS.
Regular consumption of soy lowers LDL (bad cholesterol) levels. This in turn reduces your chances of developing heart disease. The isoflavones in soy also reduce blood clotting, reducing your chances of having a stroke or heart attack. The lecithin and Vitamin E in soy help keep your heart young by providing you with a high dose of antioxidants.
Good Protein Source
Soy is a good source of protein without the high fat content of meat and dairy products. While some soy products, like soy milk, do contain some fat, this is unsaturated fat, which doesn’t contain any cholesterol. Soy is a complete protein as well, which means it contains all amino-acids needed by your body. No other vegetarian product is a complete protein.
New studies show that soy might improve mood and increase concentration and cognitive performance. Especially in post-menopausal women, soy can help improve verbal memory and foggy thinking. Women who experience memory lapses might benefits from eating soy regularly. Studies in this area are in their early stages, so it’s hard to say just how effective soy is to treat these problems. In any case, it certainly won’t hurt and you might end up with better memory to show for it.