| Soy Industry Promotes Health
Myths to Sell More Soy Products
Author Kaayla T. Daniel is challenging what she
calls the myth that soy prevents breast cancer. "The truth
is that soy
protein contains dangerous levels of plant estrogens. Although
not identical to human estrogens, these have been proven to increase
breast cell proliferation, a widely accepted marker of breast
cancer risk." said Daniel, author of "The Whole Soy Story: The
Dark Side of America's Favorite Health Food."
"The soy industry consistently plays down the evidence that soy
can promote breast
cancer," Daniel said. "It is even using Breast Cancer Awareness
Month as an excuse to push its products on unsuspecting women."
Daniel disputes the idea that soy is responsible for lower breast
cancer rates among those who consume traditional Asian diets.
She cites a recent study in the journal "Cancer Causes and Control,"
which found that Asians who ate more soy did not have lower cancer
rates than Asians who ate less.
"The soy industry ... heavily promotes the myth that Asians have
lower rates of breast cancer because of soy consumption," Daniel
said. "In fact, Asians eat soy in very small quantities, as a
condiment in the diet and not as a staple food. What's more, they
eat old-fashioned, whole soybean products such as miso, tempeh,
natto and tofu, not the new heavily processed products marketed
by the soy industry such as soy milk, veggie burgers and 'energy
Government officials in Israel and France have concluded that
high soy consumption may indeed pose a breast cancer
risk. Israeli Health Ministry guidelines recommend that women
"exercise caution" in soy consumption, and the French Food Agency
has decided to require soy
products to contain warning labels.
"The risks are well established," Daniel said. "Soy is clearly
not the answer for breast cancer prevention. The evidence is mounting
that soy may even be part of the problem."