View Full Version : Any truth to the rumor that you shouldn't give kids soy?
01-19-2001, 03:22 PM
I was told by a girlfriend last night that you shouldn't give kids tofu or other soy products. My child drinks regular organic cows milk, but eats lots of soy products, including soy burger, "chicken" nuggets, corn dogs, etc. I ask her, how about all those kids in asian countries who are raised on soy, and she said that the soy and tofu in the US is treated/made differently, whatever that means.
The word is that, as soy is an estrogen mimic, it can cause them, particulary girls to "develop" early. I talked to another friend, who is macrobiotic and usually up on such things, who says that it is much furor over one very small, limited study.
Anyone have any solid info?
01-19-2001, 05:29 PM
I would check the www.askdrweil.com (http://www.askdrweil.com) website. He is wonderful, and is well respected for his thorough and unbiased knowledge and advice. He is an advocate of both modern medicine and homeopathic medicine. He gives very plain, simple, logical answers to complicated questions. Good luck in your search. I myself had actually heard something about this subject, but since I don't have kids (yet!), I never took the time to really find out the answer, but I too, would be curious to know...
01-19-2001, 09:55 PM
Please post if you find anything on this... I feed my 11 month old lots of soy products and had never heard of this (and consider myself semi-well read on what not to feed kids http://www.cookinglight.com/bbs/smile.gif)
01-20-2001, 12:20 AM
I've read lots of articles on raising vegetarian kids (who usually end up eating lots of soy products) and all the doctors said it's just fine, just to make sure the're getting enough fat, etc. I also read an article by Dr. Nancy Snyderman (she does drkoop.com and lots of tv spots) and she said she hadn't heard about the estrogen increase. I think you're just fine, like you said, lots of countries have been eating soy for thousands of years and I don't know how their tofu is different than ours. I think this is being overblown. Don't worry...if your daughter is lucky enough to like heart-healthy soy products, feed them to her!!
01-20-2001, 12:34 PM
I respect your opinion a lot, Lisa, because you have really done your homework. I'm glad to hear your opinion on Dr. Weil. I always assumed he made his recommendations based on thorough research, but if that's not 100% true, I'll remember to keep that in mind when reading any of his stuff. I always liked him because he seemed "balanced" - using traditional medicine and herbal/natural medicines together, which is what I believe in (the best of both worlds, as it were). Anyhow, thanks also for education on why girls are "growing up" earlier. This has bothered and perplexed me for a long time, particularly because now I have so many "female" problems, and infertility (like so many people nowadays), and have really, really been perplexed as to why this is such a new problem. It certainly makes sense, since the average American diet in the last 50 or so years is so horrific. I'm totally with you on your soap box about school lunches, no PE, etc....
01-20-2001, 05:22 PM
There are also studies that worry that girls are maturing faster due to the BGH (Bovine Growth Hormone) given to cows to produce more milk. The idea is that it's getting to the girls through that same milk. BHG is blamed for causing early puberty and the problems increased estrogen causes in females.
01-20-2001, 10:47 PM
I am gled that you understood my take on Dr. Weil, he is a highly trained physician (Harvard Med. School!). But, he has books to sell and newsletters to write, and as I like to say, "Bicyles and Broccoli don't make headlines". The main thing that he has changed in recent years is his recommendation on vit. c, he went from 2,000 mg to 500 mg.
Have you ever done his on-line health test? For a healthy 30 year-old with no health risks and a healthy diet and lifestyle he recommends 11 doses of supplements. That certainly would not help reduce my stress level!
I do find myself doing his recommended "news fasts" because I am an complete NPR junkie.
01-20-2001, 11:58 PM
Soy has does contain weak plant estrogens. They are 1/10000 to 1/100000 the strength of the body's own natural estrogen. This is not something that is going to cause a four year old to sprout breasts!
The controversy lies with breast cancer patients who may have an estrogen receptor positive cancer i.e. a cancer that was stimulated to grow in the presence of estrogen. Interestingly enough, Asian women who have diets high in soy have LESS breast cancer, and the average age of menarche (starting one's period) is 18 years old in rural areas of China!
The main thing that is causing America's young people to 'develop' at a fast rate is not soy burgers, or even hormones in milk...it is simply too many calories. Increased body fat will cause some young girls to start thier periods, grow breast, and in general, not look like the "little
girls" that they are.
Don't even get me on my soap box about school lunches, coke machines in schools and no more PE classes.
I usually agree with Grace on every account, but I personally do not agree with some of Dr. Weil's nutrition philosophy. I have been reading him for some time, and I have seen him have to change his tune about a few things because reasearch came out that disproved his "recommendations". I do think he is right on about reducing stress and changing your environment, I think he just tries to be a little to cutting edge when it comes to nutrition.
01-21-2001, 10:19 AM
Lisa, I am so glad that you participate in this bb! When this post came up, I thought "hm, I wonder what foodgirl thinks." I believe you're a dietician (right?) and it's so great that we have the opportunity for your expertise on this board. Thanks again for keeping us informed!
01-21-2001, 08:14 PM
LG, I second your comment. I knew that the posters on this Board, especially foodgirl, would know more about this. I have been giving my child Organic (none BGH) milk since she started drinking it. Whether any studies bear it out or not, I just don't think it sound right my kid getting cow hormones. I wonder what else she is getting????
Regarding the bad food, lack of recess in schools, etc. I agree. My daughter is only 2, but I am already worrying about this. I am trying to limit the amount of sugar, salt, fried foods, etc. she gets at home and out, where I can, to train her taste to not crave those things. I am having to break the habit of years of over-salted and fried southern foods. It can only help her in later years, with her weight and her health. I am shocked when I see my friends give their kids oversalted and sugared foods (Do you really need to use the blue pokeman applesauce which is largely corn syrup? My kid loves regular applesauce, with only apples in it. It is plenty sweet.) Sorry, as you can see this hits a nerve.
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