Thoughts on Soy

I recently received this question from a fellow WFPB advocate:

Do you feel soy milk and tofu are ok to eat on a regular basis (e.g., soy milk – daily, and tofu – 2/3 times per week)?

My short answer to this is yes.  These are minimally processed soy products that, as far as I know, have not been shown to adversely affect health when consumed in these amounts.

My longer answer is still “yes” with the following qualifiers:

  • As long as the rest of your WFPB diet is rich in vegetables

Although minimally processed soy products like tofu, soy milk, tempeh and miso can be part of a healthy WFPB diet, I believe that the health benefits that Okinawans experience come from their large vegetable intake.  If you are currently not eating a sufficient amount of vegetables, than replacing some soy with vegetables is encouraged.

  • As long as you purchase and consume organic soymilk and tofu.

Soy beans and corn are among the most genetically modified foods in the US market, so I encourage purchasing organic soy and corn products whenever possible

Dr. John McDougall shares information on soy products along with his recommendations in this article.  You can also hear Dr. McDougall’s thoughts on soy in this video.

Jeff Novick RD, compiled the obesity rates of countries from Southeast and East Asia and compared them to the Obesity rates of countries in the Mediterranean.

He wrote an article called “The Mediterranean Diet is a Weight-Gainer; The Asian Diet Should be Our Goal”  So a WFPB diet with small amounts of traditional soy products is a healthier choice than following a Mediterranean diet.  Click here to access Novick’s article.  It is the second article from Dr. McDougall’s March 2013 Newsletter.


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