Soy is making kids 'gay'

By Jim Rutz

Posted: December 12, 2006
1:00 am Eastern

© 2011


Soy is making kids 'gay'
The trouble with soy – part 2
The trouble with soy – part 3
The trouble with soy – part 4
The trouble with soy – part 5
The trouble with soy – part 6

Soy is making kids 'gay'
There's a slow poison out there that's severely damaging our children and threatening to tear apart our culture. The ironic part is, it's a "health food," one of our most popular.

Now, I'm a health-food guy, a fanatic who seldom allows anything into his kitchen unless it's organic. I state my bias here just so you'll know I'm not anti-health food.

The dangerous food I'm speaking of is soy. Soybean products are feminizing, and they're all over the place. You can hardly escape them anymore.

I have nothing against an occasional soy snack. Soy is nutritious and contains lots of good things. Unfortunately, when you eat or drink a lot of soy stuff, you're also getting substantial quantities of estrogens.

Estrogens are female hormones. If you're a woman, you're flooding your system with a substance it can't handle in surplus. If you're a man, you're suppressing your masculinity and stimulating your "female side," physically and mentally.

In fetal development, the default is being female. All humans (even in old age) tend toward femininity. The main thing that keeps men from diverging into the female pattern is testosterone, and testosterone is suppressed by an excess of estrogen.

If you're a grownup, you're already developed, and you're able to fight off some of the damaging effects of soy. Babies aren't so fortunate. Research is now showing that when you feed your baby soy formula, you're giving him or her the equivalent of five birth control pills a day. A baby's endocrine system just can't cope with that kind of massive assault, so some damage is inevitable. At the extreme, the damage can be fatal.

Soy is feminizing, and commonly leads to a decrease in the size of the penis, sexual confusion and homosexuality. That's why most of the medical (not socio-spiritual) blame for today's rise in homosexuality must fall upon the rise in soy formula and other soy products. (Most babies are bottle-fed during some part of their infancy, and one-fourth of them are getting soy milk!) Homosexuals often argue that their homosexuality is inborn because "I can't remember a time when I wasn't homosexual." No, homosexuality is always deviant. But now many of them can truthfully say that they can't remember a time when excess estrogen wasn't influencing them.

Doctors used to hope soy would reduce hot flashes, prevent cancer and heart disease, and save millions in the Third World from starvation. That was before they knew much about long-term soy use. Now we know it's a classic example of a cure that's worse than the disease. For example, if your baby gets colic from cow's milk, do you switch him to soy milk? Don't even think about it. His phytoestrogen level will jump to 20 times normal. If he is a she, brace yourself for watching her reach menarche as young as seven, robbing her of years of childhood. If he is a boy, it's far worse: He may not reach puberty till much later than normal.

Research in 2000 showed that a soy-based diet at any age can lead to a weak thyroid, which commonly produces heart problems and excess fat. Could this explain the dramatic increase in obesity today?

Recent research on rats shows testicular atrophy, infertility and uterus hypertrophy (enlargement). This helps explain the infertility epidemic and the sudden growth in fertility clinics. But alas, by the time a soy-damaged infant has grown to adulthood and wants to marry, it's too late to get fixed by a fertility clinic.

Worse, there's now scientific evidence that estrogen ingredients in soy products may be boosting the rapidly rising incidence of leukemia in children. In the latest year we have numbers for, new cases in the U.S. jumped 27 percent. In one year!

There's also a serious connection between soy and cancer in adults – especially breast cancer. That's why the governments of Israel, the UK, France and New Zealand are already cracking down hard on soy.

In sad contrast, 60 percent of the refined foods in U.S. supermarkets now contain soy. Worse, soy use may double in the next few years because (last I heard) the out-of-touch medicrats in the FDA hierarchy are considering allowing manufacturers of cereal, energy bars, fake milk, fake yogurt, etc., to claim that "soy prevents cancer." It doesn't.

P.S.: Soy sauce is fine. Unlike soy milk, it's perfectly safe because it's fermented, which changes its molecular structure. Miso, natto and tempeh are also OK, but avoid tofu.

The trouble with soy – part 2

Last week's column ("Soy is making kids 'gay'") got a lot of attention – 500 e-mails and three dozen media interview requests – because it blindsided the overwhelming majority of readers.

Perhaps fewer than 10 percent of us are aware that soybeans are a hotly debated topic in medical circles today. Soy products – eaten, drunk, and slipped into thousands of commercial products – are rightly being blamed for a horrendous variety of medical conditions, several of them nearing epidemic status and a few of them irreversible. Pediatricians and other doctors are starting to see a growing parade of patients suffering from serious symptoms that were quite rare just a generation ago.

The shocking statements in my column produced much incredulity, the more so because I did not footnote or go into detail. I simply did not have room to introduce all the biggest problems with soy and do it in a scientific, footnoted format.

I will make an attempt to compensate for that shortcoming in this column and the next few. To keep within the length limit, I will tuck footnotes and excess text into one continuous hyperlink. You'll have to click on each "footnote" to see the column in full.

Let's start here: The most common question of the past week has been, "If soy is so harmful as to potentially alter sexual physiology and behavior, why haven't the Chinese and Japanese all died off or become homosexual centuries ago?"

Three interlocking reasons: Click here for the first two. The third is that Orientals simply do not eat as much soy as Westerners think. The average daily consumption in Japan (one of the highest soy-consuming countries in Asia) is at most about eight grams of soy protein. China and other countries eat far less.

Soy has never been a leading staple there like rice, fish or pork. Even going back to the 1930s, calorie intake from soy in China was rarely more than 1.5 percent of their diet, whereas pork provided 65 percent! No comparison. Traditionally, soy plants were plowed under in fields as fertilizer. Soy was a poverty food, eaten heavily only by the poor in times of famine. (Grazing animals don't like to eat it, either.) People have always eaten soy in small portions as a condiment or a supplement with a meal. The highest intake of soy in Japan is among monks, who eat it to turn off sexual desire. (Think about that the next time you're in the grocery store.)

By comparison, the FDA has encouraged Americans to eat 25 grams of soy protein a day as a way to prevent heart disease. This FDA health claim has doubled the consumption of soy protein in the U.S., yet was recently discredited when the American Heart Association changed its position on soy, now saying that soy does not lower cholesterol and does not prevent heart disease!

You couldn't say that FDA opinions are for sale to the highest bidder, but they were influenced by a campaign and formal endorsement request by the soy industry, which includes giants like Monsanto, Archer Daniels Midland, Cargill and DuPont. When the mud hit the fan during the investigation period, the FDA quickly modified its stance, limiting its endorsement to just basic soy protein instead of the isoflavone (estrogen-mimicking) ingredients in soy. The problem with that is soy protein contains those dangerous plant estrogens. This is why two of the FDA's most distinguished scientists, Drs. Daniel Sheehan and Daniel Doerge, protested the FDA health claim in a public letter.

If you think you don't eat much soy, think again. Though only 15 percent of us eat a mostly-soy product once a week, 55-70 percent of all processed foods in supermarkets now have some soy in them. You can't escape it. Soybean oil accounts for a whopping 79 percent of the edible fats used annually in the U.S.

Health-conscious people are likely to eat the most. Even a moderate vegetarian or soy fan would think nothing of tossing down eight ounces of tofu, a quarter cup of roasted soy nuts and a glass of soymilk daily, and that's far, far more than any normal Japanese individual would be likely to consume.

But the worst victims of soy are babies. Per kilogram of body weight, the average Japanese in 2000 ate 0.47 milligrams of soy isoflavones daily, while the average U.S. baby drinking soy formula got 6.25 milligrams. Isoflavones are testosterone-suppressing female hormones.

What is that doing to their sex organs and their sexual orientation? Tune in next week. The story gets worse, much worse.

The trouble with soy, part 3

For many people, the most shocking new revelations about soy are not the increased risks of breast and other cancers [1-2], the link to childhood leukemia [3-6], the failure to prevent heart disease [7-8], infertility [9-10], or thyroid damage, with its symptoms of weight gain, fatigue and depression [11-13]. What really startles many of us is soy's impact on male sex organs, estrogen overload, testosterone suppression, and premature female puberty [14].

The root sex problem is that soy is loaded with isoflavones, plant estrogens that operate like human female estrogen, which occurs naturally in our bodies, male and female. These "phytoestrogens" cause serious developmental problems. They're only 1/1,000th to 1/1,200th the potency of human estrogen, ounce for ounce, but it's common for babies to consume them in such large quantities that they overwhelm their bodies' delicate testosterone-estrogen balance, leaving their victim – male or female – with a wild variety of lifelong symptoms, sometimes even disfigurement [15-19].

Toxicologists estimate that an infant fed exclusively on soy formula is getting the equivalent of three to five birth control pills ? per day [20]. One study found that soy-fed babies had 13,000 to 22,000 times more estrogen in their blood than milk-fed babies [21].

These are not just curious, isolated data. One percent of U.S. girls are now growing breasts or pubic hair before age three. By age eight, either of these two abnormalities is appearing among 14.7 percent of white girls and a staggering 48.3 percent of black girls [22]. Why so many black girls? Probably because they are more likely to be given soy infant formula. They are being robbed of their girlhood. Soy formula-fed girls are also more likely to have lifelong menstrual problems (primarily longer and more painful periods), hormonal changes associated with infertility, and other health problems. If this isn't a national medical emergency, I don't know what is.

The situation is just as bad for boys. Boy babies fed soy formula may go into puberty late ? or not at all. Some of these boys are so feminized that their breasts grow but their penises don't. Some mature into adults with penises not much bigger than the ones they were born with! Others might look normal and go through puberty on time, but can't father children because their sperm are too few in number (or poor swimmers and/or unable to fertilize eggs) [23]. Sperm counts dropped 50 percent between 1939 and 1990 and are continuing to go down at the rate of 2 percent per year [24]. (Another national emergency.) Men make sperm throughout their lives, of course, but production ability can be seriously hurt by soy during the first trimester of pregnancy, during infancy, and early childhood [24-25].

It's not just the sex organs that are affected during the key developmental phases of pregnancy and infancy. The brain, too, can be irrevocably changed by excess estrogens, which suppress testosterone. That may contribute to altered sexual behavior and sexual preference. Estrogenized males of many species are more likely to suffer from ADD/ADHD and even to perform more like females on tests [26-28].

Soy won't hurt a grown man the same way. It's apt to flatten his libido, but won't affect the size or shape of his sex organs. (Against my better judgment, I took a national TV interview last week. They handed a bowl of soy stuff to a guy in the studio audience. After he had munched for thirty seconds, the host asked him, "Well, you startin' to feel kinda swishy yet?" Good comedy, but highly misleading.)

However, soy can cause gynecomastia (female-looking breasts) within months. A recent study at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill showed that men eating whopping amounts of soy experienced breast enlargement and even some nipple discharge [29]. They ate a lot more soy than most of us would, but it serves as fair warning.

Moms eating soy during pregnancy are putting their babies at risk because isoflavones swim right through the placenta [30-31]. This can mess up hormonal balance, especially during the first three months, when male fetuses are in a crucial developmental stage and absolutely must have adequate testosterone. Those that get plant estrogens instead of mom's testosterone are at risk for birth defects like cryptorchidism (undescended testicles) and/or hypospadias, in which the opening of the penis is underneath instead of at the tip [32]. Although undescended testicles can be corrected fairly easily through surgery, hypospadias is far more serious. In worst case scenarios, it can require as many as 10 separate operations. Even then, the boy may not grow up to be an adult male with full sexual function. His penis typically never gets longer than one and a half inches [33].

Hypospadias is on the rise in the U.S. and Europe, and now occurs in one out of 125 births [34]. This coincides with the greater numbers of industrial chemicals in the environment, but also with the growing popularity of vegetarian and vegan diets. A British study in 2000 showed that vegetarian mothers are five times more likely to give birth to a boy with hypospadias than mothers who eat a varied diet [35]. Sadly, vegan moms-to-be think they are eating healthfully when they swig soy milk, nosh on soy nuts, and eat veggie burgers. The tragic result can be undescended testicles, hypospadias or even homosexuality. No study says that soy dooms a child to homosexuality, but it's not hard to believe that at some point during pregnancy babies are hardwired for sexual preference. (See the Psychological Medicine article in endnote 27 below.)

Pediatricians are seeing so many over-estrogenized boys today with breasts, delayed puberty and /or behavioral problems that they've come up with the terms "Developmental Estrogenization Syndrome" and "Testicular Dysgenesis Syndrome" [36].

Right now, no evidence indicates that soy during childhood or adulthood is likely to change sexual preference. The danger zone is the first three months of both pregnancy and infancy, when male physiology and brain circuitry are still developing. In other words, a girl-chasing, football-playing college boy won't go gay even if he becomes a vegetarian or snacks all day on soy energy bars. (He might develop thyroid or other health problems or lose most of his libido, though.)

My larger concern is that the increasing number of less robust 15-year-olds who are already "struggling with their sexual identity" will be shoved over that thin line into homosexuality. No, they won’t wake up some morning with floppy wrists and a nasal lisp, but they may begin to gravitate toward social circles where they feel more comfortable ? and less expected to be rowdy or brag about a string of sexual conquests. And once a teen is ensconced in a homosexual milieu, breaking free from it could mean abandoning his best friends.

Does the idea that soy can cause so much trouble sound like Rutz sensationalism? Don't just take my word for it. Here's what government health experts in Israel and France have decided: The Israeli Health Ministry has looked long and hard at the evidence and concluded that its citizens won't "be fruitful and multiply" if they eat too much soy. It has warned that babies should not receive any soy formula, that children to age 18 should not eat soy more than once a day (to a maximum of 3 times a week), and that adults should beware because of breast cancer and adverse effects on fertility [37].

The French, meanwhile, intend to maintain their reputation as ardent lovers. Food manufacturers in France will soon have to remove those dangerous plant estrogens from soy formula and to put warning labels on soyfoods and soy milk. French Food Agency experts see the biggest risks as being to children under three and women who have been diagnosed with or have breast cancer in their families [38]. The British Dietetic Association also warns parents to avoid soy formula [39].

Lots of Americans accept everything our FDA and NIH say as gospel. Those poor souls are now in danger because their trusted government watchdogs have yet to bark any warnings about soy. However, Daniel Sheehan, PhD, one of the FDA's top toxicologists, has warned that that infants fed soy-based formulas have been placed at risk in a "large, uncontrolled and basically unmonitored human infant experiment."

Do you really want to put your child into that experiment?

Next week: More news about soy ? all documented, all bad.

  1. Fallon, S, Daniel KT, Sanda W. Responses to Docket 2004Q-0151 Solae Company Health Claim on Cancer. Documents submitted to the FDA, June 14, 2004, January 20, 2005 and April 11, 2005. Posted at under "Soy Alert."
  2. Daniel, Kaayla T. The Whole Soy Story: The Dark Side of America's Favorite Health Food (New Trends, 2004).379-394. Overview of how soy can cause, contribute to or accelerate the growth of cancers, including 131 references. Includes about 200 real-life horror stories that will make you run screaming into the kitchen and toss out anything with soy on the label!
  3. Strick R, Strissel PL et al. Dietary bioflavonids induce cleavage in the MLL gene and may contribute to infant leukemia. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 2000, 25,97, 9, 4790-95.
  4. Editorial. Infantile leukemia and soybeans – a hypothesis. Leukemia, 1999, 13, 317-20.
  5. Ross JA, Potter JD et al. Maternal exposure to potential inhibitors of DNA topoisomerase II and infant leukemia (United States) a report from the Children's Cancer Group, Cancer Causes Control, 1996,7, 581-590.
  6. Hengstler JG, Helmerdingert CK et al. Dietary topoisomerase II- poisons: contribution of soy products to leukemia? EXCL J, 2002, 1, 8-14.
  7. Sacks FM, Lichtenstien A et al. Soy protein, isoflavones and cardiovascular health: an American Heart Association Science Advisory for professionals from the nutrition committee. Circulation, 2006, Feb 21, 113, 7, 1034-44. Epub Jan 17, 2006.
  8. Stauffer BL, Konhilas JP et al. Soy diet worsens heart disease in mice. J Clin Invest, 2006, Jan, 116, 1, 209-16.
  9. Daniel op cit. 357-78. Overview of soy and infertility with 103 references.
  10. Jefferson WN, Padilla-Banks E, Newbold RR. Adverse effects on female development and reproduction in CD-1 mice following neonatal exposure to the phytoestrogen genistein at environmentally relevant doses. Biol Reprod, 2005, Oct; 73, 4, 798-806. Epub June 1, 2005. A recent, well-designed National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences study.
  11. Daniel, Kaayla T. op cit, 311-330. Comprehensive overview of the scientific literature on soy and thyroid disease with 80 references.
  12. Ishizuki Y, Hirooka et al. The effects on the thyroid gland of soybeans administered experimentally in healthy subjects. Nippon Naibundi Gakkai Zasshi, 1991, 67, 622-629. Translation by Japan Communication Service, Wellington, NZ.
  13. Divi RL, Chang HC, Doerge DR. Antithyroid isoflavones from soybean. Biochem Pharmacol, 1997, 54, 1087-1096.
  14. Daniel, Kaayla T. op cit, 331--378. Overview of the scientific literature on the effects of soy formula and soy foods on male and female reproductive system development with 201 references.
  15. Ibid. 295-309 and 331-378.
  16. Franke, AA, Custer LG et al. Quantification of phytoestrogens in legumes by HPLC. J Agric Food Chem, 1994, 42, 1905-13.
  17. Markiewicz J, Garey J et al. In vitro bioassays of non-steroidal phytoestrogens. J Steroids Biochem Mol Biol, 1993, 45, 5, 399-405.
  18. Irvine CHG, Fitzpatrick MG, Alexander SL. Phytoestrogens in soy-based infant foods: concentrations, daily intake and possible biological effects. Proc Soc Exp Biol Med, 1998, 217, 247-253.
  19. Setchell KDR, Zimmer-Nechemias L et al. Exposure of infants to phyto-oestrogens from soy-based infant formula. Lancet, 1997, 350, 9070.
  20. Office of the Swiss Federal Health Service Bulletin #28, July 20, 1992.
  21. Setchell KDR, Zimmer-Nechemias L et al. Isoflavone content of infant formulas and the metabolic fate of these phytoestrogens in early life. Am J Clin Nutr, 1998, 69 (suppl) 1453S-61S.
  22. Giddens, Herman et al. Secondary sexual characteristics and menses in young girls seen in office practice. Study from the Pediatric Research in Office Settings Network, 1997, 99, 4, 505-512.
  23. Daniel, Kaayla. op cit. 332-339, 365-374.
  24. Sharpe R, Shakkeback N. Are oestrogens involved in falling sperm counts and disorders of the male reproductive tract? Lancet, 1993, 341, 1292-1345.
  25. Auger J, Kunstmann J et al. Decline in semen quality among fertile men in Paris during the past 20 years. NEJM, 1995, 332, 5, 281-85.
  26. Hines M. Hormonal and neural correlates of sex-typed behavioral development in human beings. In Marc Haug, ed. The Development of Sex Differences and Similarities in Behavior (Dordrecht, Kluwer Academic, 1993). 131-147.
  27. Harrison PJ, Everall IP et al. Is homosexuality hardwired? Sexual orientation and brain structure. Psych Med, 1994, 24, 811-16.
  28. Lund TD, West TW et al. Visual spatial memory is enhanced in female rats BMC Neurosci, 2001, 1, 1-13.
  29. Squires, Sally. Nutrition not for women only. Boys and men can benefit from soy too. Washington Post, June 8, 2004. Hard to believe, but the Washington Post diet columnist gave this a positive spin despite the report of breast enlargement, nipple discharge, and lowered testosterone!
  30. Foster WG, Chan S et al. Detection of phytoestrogens in samples of second trimester amniotic fluid. Toxicol Letter, 2004, 129, 3, 199-205.
  31. Doerge DR, Churchwell MI et al. Placental transfer of the soy isoflavone genistein following dietary and gavage administration to Sprague Dawley rats. Reprod Toxicol 2001, 15, 2, 105-10.
  32. Daniel, Kaayla. op cit, 370-374. Overview of male fetal development, hormonal needs, endocrine disruption caused by soy backed by numerous scientific references, including textbooks.
  33. Baskin, Laurence, ed. Hypospadias and Genital Development, Advances in Experimental Biology and Medicine, vol 545. (N.Y. Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers, 2004. The definitive textbook.
  34. Ibid.
  35. North K, Golding J. A maternal diet in pregnancy is associated with hypospadias. BJU Int, 2000, 35, 107-13.
  36. Baskin, op cit.
  37. Siegel-Itzkovich J. Health committee warns of potential dangers of soya. BMJ, 2005, July 30, 331, 7511, 254.
  38. Press Release, AFSSA (Agence Francaise de Securite Sanitaire des Aliments (French Food Safety Agency), March 9, 2005,Translation available online at
  39. British Dietetic Association. Paediatric group position statement on the use of soya protein for infants. J Fam Health Care, 2003, 13, 4, 93.

The trouble with soy, part 4

The shock waves from my last three columns continue to reverberate around the world. The fan mail is in three main categories:

  1. "You didn't tell the half of it. Why don't you tell folks how bad soy really is?"
  2. "Help! My family has been hit hard by soy. What can we do about it now? Are there any ways to reverse the effects?"
  3. Then there are the letters written in blood on asbestos. Actual quotes from some of the cleaner ones:

    A. "Your article proved the following: a) you are an idiot, b) you [sic] a bastard, c) you should be prevented from publishing anything ever again, and d) once again, you are an idiot."

    B. "are you an idiot? what's your next theory ... eating chicken wings makes people black?"


    D. "An ignorant person might be able to believe these lies, but someone who actually knows the facts will not be so easily fooled. This artical [sic] is a ridiculous waste of space. It's ludacris [sic]."

    E. "Everything about ... your article ... is ignorant and filled with hate. Your blatant homophobia is buffered by your use of dismissible scientific theories. You are clearly targeting gay men with your hate filled article and essentially promoting ignorance, fear and hate."

After 76 columns for WorldNetDaily, I've become accustomed to barbed feedback, but mostly the polite, Republican type of badinage. However, since my Dec. 12 column got picked up by the big homosexual/liberal websites, the range of responses has widened to include the obscene, the vulgar and the stupendously naive. Also, it's fascinating to note that the letters seething with hatred usually accuse me of hate. Ah well, it's nice to know I appeal to a variety of readers.

This week I take temporary leave of the homosexuality issue to touch upon two other serious soy-product problems: breast/prostate cancer and being overweight.

Is the death rate from breast and prostate cancers much lower in Asia? Absolutely. No argument. But they do have higher rates of even more lethal cancers, namely liver, esophageal, pancreatic and stomach cancers. And remember that Asians don't eat much soy. That's lucky for them because soy estrogens are as likely to promote breast and prostate cancers as to stop them.[1-2]

We know that because researchers at the University of Illinois used soy isoflavones to induce mammary tumors in mice but saw them regress after being switched back to a diet low in soy estrogens. (The more isoflavones, the more risk.) Because the worst effects were experienced by mice with very low pre-existing estrogen levels, the researchers concluded that soy is riskiest for women during their menopause years.[3, 4] However, it's not good for younger women, either, as University of California researchers found a "stimulatory effect on the premenopausal female breast."[5] And there are lots more studies besides these.

That's why Dr. Regina G. Ziegler of the National Cancer Institute has expressed worries about the soy fad and recommends that women be "cautious."[6] Cornell University has homed in on women with a family history of breast cancer and suggested they be especially cautious about their soy intake.[7] The Israeli and French governments have issued strong warnings.[8,9] (That's enough to convince me to warn you in these columns.)

The soy industry, of course, trots out lots of studies saying the opposite. Lately it's been tripping on the idea that soy prevents breast cancer best of all when women eat lots of it during adolescence. In other words, "get 'em young." Indeed, a recent human study presented slight evidence that this might be true.[10] But can you trust a study based on dietary recall? I can't remember what I ate last week, but these women supposedly remembered every cake of tofu they downed years ago. With the studies on adolescent rats, we know exactly what they ate and how it all turned out. One study carried the good news headline "Soy protects rats against breast cancer." But wait – what's buried deep down in the text? Those rats also experienced an "advance in vaginal opening." In plain English, premature puberty![11] Is that the kind of "protection" you want for your daughter?

The soy industry also has men in their sights. Soy, they claim, is the answer for preventing prostate cancer. What nobody's telling our men is that IF soy prevents cancer, it's probably because it lowers testosterone![12-15] And less often, it's because soy decreases prostate weight. Their "good news" often comes with other side effects, too, like decreased brain weight and changes to the sexually dimorphic brain.[16,17]

The sexually dimorphic brain is part of the hypothalamus that is super-sensitive to hormones – the estrogen that keeps our women womanly and testosterone that keeps our men manly. Interestingly enough, homosexuals have different structures to their hypothalamuses, with some areas more like females than straight males.[18] So, brother, if feminizing yourself sounds like a good way to prevent prostate cancer, then put soy on your menu. Just know that this course of action does not come highly recommended. Top scientists at the FDA's National Laboratory for Toxicological Research found that isoflavones interfere with hormone receptors in the prostate gland and that this is likely to have "implications for reproductive toxicity and carcinogenesis."[19]

"Well," you may say, "soy will at least keep me and my kids from getting fat." That idea, too, comes straight from the soy industry, which has an $80 million annual PR budget and works overtime to come up with "initiatives" with cute names like "Isoy."?[20] Click here for a clever example of the United Soybean Board's efforts to reach out to your children. Their bright idea is to push "healthy" low-fat soy protein products into our schools.

Could that work? Fat chance. Farmers give animals soy feed to fatten them for slaughter as fast as possible. Isoflavones interfere with the thyroid gland's ability to manufacture thyroid hormones, and that means weight gain, tiredness and depression. Now frankly, I don't care if Bessie was depressed on the day she moooved on to that Great Meadow in the Sky, but I do care if 300 million fellow Americans turn into walking blobs because they were conned into thinking soy is the best weight-loss food since the celery and water diet.

To date, the best research on soy and the thyroid comes from Japan, home of the world's finest thyroid clinics. When thyroid specialists there experimented on healthy Japanese men and women, they saw their thyroids fry within three short months of increased soybean intake.[21]

The people studied weren't eating soy for breakfast, lunch and dinner. They weren't even popping soy supplements. These human lab rats were downing just enough soy foods to give them about 35 milligrams a day of isoflavones ? 10 milligrams less than you get in one glass of soy milk! But their thyroids paid a steep price. And with a weakened thyroid, you'll find it harder and harder to lose any weight at all. And you won't be too cheerful, either.

Next week I'll touch on the question, "If soy is no good, what can I eat instead?" Also, I'll discuss heart disease and why the American Heart Association no longer is in love with soy.

  1. Daniel, Kaayla T. "The Whole Soy Story: The Dark Side of America's Favorite Health Food" (New Trends, 2004), 379-94. Overview of how soy can cause, contribute to or accelerate the growth of cancers, including 131 references.
  2. Fallon, S, Daniel KT, Sanda W. responses to Docket 2004Q-0151 Solae Company Health Calim on Cancer. Documents submitted to the FDA, June 14, 2004, Jan. 20, 2005, and April 11, 2005. Posted at under "Soy Alert."
  3. Ju YK, Allred KF et al. Genistein stimulates growth of human breast cancer cells in a novel, postmenopausal animal model, with low plasma estradiol concentrations. Carcinogenesis, 2006, June; 27 (6), 1292-9.
  4. Allred CD, Allred KF et al. Dietary genistein results in larger MNU-induced estrogen-dependent mammary tumors following ovariectomy of Sprague-Dawley rats. Carcinogenesis, 2004, February; 25 (2); 211-8.
  5. Petrakis NL, Barnes S et al. Stimulatory influence of soy protein isolate on breast secretion in pre- and postmenopausal women. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev, 1996, 5, (10); 785-94.
  6. Ziegler, RG. Comment on phytoestrogens and breast cancer. Am J Clin Nutr, 2004, 79 (2); 183-4.
  7. Women cautioned against using herbal supplements, Science Daily, July 13, 2005.
  8. Siegel-Itzkovich J. Health Committee warns of potential dangers of soya. BMJ, 2005, July 30, 331, 7511, 254.
  9. Press release, AFSSA (Agence Francaise de Securite Sanitarie des Aliments – French Food Safety Agency), March 9, 2005. Translation available online at  
  10. Consuming soy in childhood linked to lower breast cancer risk. The Soy Daily, Nov. 17, 2006.
  11. Hakkak R, Korourian S et al. Diets containing whey proteins or soy protein isolate protect against 7, 12-dimethylbenz (a) anthracene-induced mammary tumors in female rats. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev, 2000, 9 (13), 117.
  12. Pollard M Wolter W. Sun L. Diet and the duration of testosterone-dependent prostate cancer in Lobund-Wister rats. Cancer Letter, 2001 Nov 28; 173 (2); 127-31.
  13. Pollard M, Wolter W. Prevention of prostate-related cancer in Lobund-Wister rats by a soy protein isolate/isoflavone diet. Prostate, 2000, Oct 1; 45 (2); 101-5.
  14. Pollard M, Wolter W, Sun L. Prevention of induced prostate-related cancer by soy protein isolate/isoflavone-supplemented diet in Lobund-Wistar rats. In Vivo, 2000 May-June; 14 (3); 389-92.
  15. Weber KS, Setchell KD et al. Dietary soy-phytoestrogens decrease testosterone levels and prostate weight without altering LH, prostate 5alpha-reductatse or testicular steroidogenic acute regulatory peptide levels in adult male Sprague-Dawley rats. J Endocrinol, 2001 Sep: 170 (3)591-9.
  16. Lephart ED, Setchell KD, Lund TD. Phytoestrogens: hormonal action and brain plasticity. Brain Res Bull, 2005 Apr 15; 65 (3): 193-8.
  17. Lephart ED, Rhees RW et al. Estrogens and phytoestrogens: brain plasticity of sexually dimorphic brain volumes. J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol, 2003 June; 85 (2-5): 299-309.
  18. Johnson, Ryan D. Homosexuality: Nature or Nurture, AllPsych Journal, April 30, 2003.
  19. Doerge D, Chang H. Inactivation of thyroid peroxidase by soy isoflavones in vitro and in vivo. J. Chromatogr Analyt Technolo Biomed Life Sci, 2002, 777, (1-2); 269.
  21. Ishizuki, Hirooka et al. The effects on the thyroid gland of soybeans administer experimentally i healthy subjects. Nippon Naibundi gakkai Zasshi, 1991 (67); 622-29. Translation by Japan Communication Service, Wellington, NZ.

The trouble with soy, part 5

With the passing of President Ford last month, his declaration, "Our long national nightmare is over" was resurrected – just in time for the beginning of a new national nightmare: the horror of facing the damage being done to us by the soybean craze.

It is indeed a craze: U.S. soy sales in 2004 hit $4 billion, a huge leap from $850 million in 1992, when soy began moving up from just a "hippie food" in natural food stores to mainstreaming in supermarkets.[1] Let's hear it for Mad Avenue.

It's also a horror, especially for folks who go out of their way to eat energy bars, pseudo-meats, soymilk and soy-laced cold cereals. You may recall from my Dec. 26 column that one out of every 125 male babies is now born with the once-rare condition called hypospadias, a gruesome malformity of the penis in which the urethra opening lies somewhere along the underside of the penile shaft instead of at its end.[2] The penis is also shorter – 2.6 inches shorter in the more severe cases. Overall, the malformity is associated with homosexuality; one small study showed that 7.6 percent of the control (healthy) subjects were exclusively homosexual compared with 20.3 percent of those with hypospadias (plus another 15.5 percent who were bisexual).

A British study in 2000 showed that vegetarian moms (who typically eat more soy, of course) have five times the risk of birthing a boy with hypospadias,[3] or about one chance in 25. The European Commission takes this matter so seriously that it's investigating.[4] Yet here in the US of A , health- conscious vegetarian moms-to-be are swigging tall, cool glasses of soymilk. Tragically, these moms also risk giving birth to babies that are more likely to get leukemia.[5-8] That disease, too, is on the rise, with only a few people sounding warnings that soy during pregnancy could be part of the problem. It's high time pregnant moms heard warnings. Hey, I've tasted soymilk and veggie burgers, and no way are they worth that kind of risk.

At this point, you may be saying, "Well, I'm not pregnant, not going to get pregnant, and soy does prevent heart disease, doesn't it?" That myth has been helped along by the FDA, the government agency that's supposed to protect us but has instead given us Vioxx? and aspartame and helped big business promote soy. If you've ever picked up a package of soy food or soymilk, you've seen the FDA health claim that reads: "Diets low in saturated fat and cholesterol that include 25 grams of soy protein a day may reduce the risk of heart disease." If that's your goal, you'll be downing about four servings of soy every day! No wonder soy sales have skyrocketed.

Although just about everyone in the alternative health field seems to know that the FDA is in bed with Big Pharma, the myth persists that the FDA "did the right thing" about soy. The reasoning goes like this: "The FDA would have approved a soy health claim only after a long, hard look at the evidence, and it must have been powerfully convincing, or the FDA would be seizing veggie burgers with the vengeance it usually reserves for vitamins and herbs."

What the FDA actually looked long and hard at was a single, trumped up meta-analysis paid for by Big Soy, specifically Protein Technologies International. (A meta-analysis is a type of study in which the researchers get to pick the studies they like best, average them out, and then announce a conclusion that their sponsors can take to the bank.) In giving Big Soy what it wanted, the FDA ignored protests by some of the world's leading scientists – including even its own leading scientists!

Five years later, the researchers who did that meta-analysis confessed that the conclusions hadn't held up.[10] Even the American Heart Association has now turned on soy with its announcement last January that soy does NOT lower cholesterol and does NOT prevent heart disease.[11] It foolishly still endorses it as a food "in a varied diet," but now says a health claim is entirely unwarranted. The only question now is, "Will the FDA admit its mistake and retract the currently allowed health claim?"

Even that won't be enough. What's needed is a warning label: SOY MAY CAUSE BIRTH DEFECTS, INFERTILITY, CANCER AND HEART DISEASE.

Heart disease? Yes. Soy worsens cardiomyopathy.[12] One in 500 Americans have enlarged, swollen heart muscles that cannot pump adequately and cause heart failure. Cardiomyopathy is also the usual cause of death when a seemingly healthy young athlete drops dead on the football field or basketball court.

How else might soy harm your heart? Soy isoflavones can interfere with potassium in the heart, which would cause arrhythmias.[13] Soy protein could also elevate your homocysteine level,[14] a known risk factor for heart disease.

The biggest frustration for many of my readers is not that they want to eat soy. Most of us don't like to touch the stuff! What frustrates them is that they think there's nothing left that's safe to eat. They've heard that meat, eggs, dairy and butter are bad, and that even spinach might be crawling with deadly bacteria.

The answer is simple: Eat a wide variety of the foods God put on this planet, whole foods.[15,16] Avoid the Mad Avenue foods that come in bright, shiny packages and are not whole, but fractionated and processed to oblivion. Dr. Kaayla Daniel, author of the definitive book on the dangers of soy, "The Whole Soy Story: The Dark Side of America's Favorite Health Food," has lots of free advice on how to be safe, healthy and soyfree on her websites and For example, if you're allergic to cow's milk, she highly recommends coconut milk.

If God had wanted us to eat skinless, boneless chicken breasts, He'd have made chickens that were all breast with no fat, no skin and not a leg to stand on! If He'd wanted us to drink pasteurized fat-free milk, then fat-free milk would come boiling hot out of a cow's udder! And if He'd wanted us to eat soy protein and soy oil, the little bean would easily separate into its parts and not require a billion dollar processing plant that uses chemical solvents, extreme pressure, and hellfire temperatures. Nor would God's chosen food require tons of sugar and flavorings to make it taste halfway decent.

Next week: one last column on soy! If you thought these first five were far out, wait till you read the last one.

  1. Figures from Soyatech is the publisher of the annual "Soya & Oilseed Bluebook," the industry's source of information on soy companies and products.
  2. Baskin, Laurence, ed. "Hypospadias and Genital Development, Advances in Experimental Biology and Medicine," vol. 545. (N.Y. Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers, 2004). The definitive textbook. On soy and homosexuality, see also: Lephart ED, Setchell KD, Lund TD. Phytoestrogens: hormonal action and brain plasticity. Brain Res Bull, 2005 Apr 15; 65 (3): 193-8. Also see Lephart ED, Rhees RW et al. Estrogens and phytoestrogens: brain plasticity of sexually dimorphic brain volumes. J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol, 2003 June; 85 (2-5): 299-309.
  3. North K, Golding J. A maternal diet in pregnancy is associated with hypospadias. BJU Int, 2000, 35, 107-13
  5. Strick R, Strissel PL et al. Dietary bioflavonids induce cleavage in the MLL gene and may contribute to infant leukemia. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 2000, 25,97, 9, 4790-95.
  6. Editorial. Infantile leukemia and soybeans – a hypothesis. Leukemia, 1999, 13, 317-20.
  7. Ross JA, Potter JD et al. Maternal exposure to potential inhibitors of DNA topoisomerase II and infant leukemia (United States) a report from the Children's Cancer Group, Cancer Causes Control, 1996,7, 581-590.
  8. Hengstler JG, Helmerdingert CK et al. Dietary topoisomerase II- poisons: contribution of soy products to leukemia? EXCL J, 2002, 1, 8-14.
  9. Daniel, Kaayla T. "The Whole Soy Story: The Dark Side of America's Favorite Health Food" (New Trends, 2005). 153-170. Includes a full discussion of soy and heart disease, including the politics behind the FDA health claim, with full references.
  10. Anderson, JW. Soy Food Effects on Serum Lipoproteins in Humans: Updated Meta-Analysis. Presentation at the 6th International Symposium on the Role of Soy in Preventing and Treating Chronic Disease, Renaissance Chicago Hotel, Chicago, IL, Nov. 1, 2005.
  11. Sacks FM, Lichtenstein A et al. Soy protein, isoflavones and cardiovascular health: An American Heart Association Science Advisory for professionals from the nutrition committee. Circulation, 2006, Feb. 21, 113, 7, 1034-44. Epub Jan. 17, 2006.
  12. Stauffer BL, Konhilas JP et al. Soy diet worsens heart disease in mice. J Clin Invest, 2006, Jan, 116, 1, 209-16.
  13. Chiang CE et al. Genistein inhibits the inward rectifying potassium currents in guinea pig ventricular myocytes. J Biomed Sci, 2002, 9, 321-26.
  14. Daniel, op cit. 160.
  15. Fallon, Sally. "Nourishing Traditions" (New Trends, 2nd edition, 1999), a full-spectrum nutritional cookbook.
  16. Rubin, Jordan, "The Maker's Diet" ( Siloam, 2004)