Soybeans have been used as a dietary staple for over 5000 years. Soy is purported to help many conditions, such as high cholesterol, osteoporosis and menopause symptoms. Research supports soy’s effectiveness for lowering LDL cholesterol for people with LDLs greater than 160. Soy may be effective for other conditions, such as diabetes, diabetic neuropathy, diarrhea in infants, and kidney disease. The efficacy of soy on reducing breast cancer risk has not been established. Claims about soy’s effectiveness in relieving hepatitis symptoms have not been substantiated.
Attention for Liver Disease: Soy phytoestrogens occasionally appear on lists of supplements that people with liver disease should not take, although no evidence was found to support this. Because it appears to interact with cytochrome p-450 metabolized substances (see About Cytochrome P-450 below), do not take during HCV treatment.
Safety Information: Soy has a good safety record. Gastrointestinal complaints, such as bloating and flatulence are the most common. Soy may lower thyroid levels, especially in infants. Safety has not been established for children, pregnant or nursing mothers.
Interactions: There is still controversy about the phytoestrogen properties in soy. For this reason, soy is not recommended for anyone with hormone-sensitive malignancies or those taking drugs, such as tamoxifen, to prevent disease recurrence. In lab studies, showed potential to interact with any cytochrome p-450 metabolized substances (see About Cytochrome P-450 below).
Lab Notes: Theoretically, may interfere with thyroid tests in children.
Note: Isoflavones are key, whether you use soy in your diet or as a supplement.
NOTE: 90% of Soy is Genetically Modified Foods ( GMO ) now mainly grown in USA and China. This makes soy an unhealthy food. There is reason to doubt that the balance 10% of the soy grown is really organic due to cross-pollination and contamination.
Source: HCSP Herbal Dietary Supplements Glossary By Lucinda, K. Porter, RN ( Soybeans )