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Soy milk/estrogen harmful to boys?

post #1 of 32
Thread Starter 
We have been lacto vegetarian for about 6 months now (can't seem to give up cheese) and I had heard before somethign about hormones in soy milk might be harmful, but for some reason forgotten about it until just recently. A vegetarian friend of mine mentioned that she gives her son half soy and half rice because there isn't enough research about the hormones (estrogen)and it is harmful to boys. I don't know what it would do (harm the male reproductive system is all I can think of) but don't want to risk harming my two boys. We just tried rice milk and it was (sorry) NASTY.



So, risk diabetes, heart attack, etc with cows milk and support that industry to keep my boys privates safe?? or keep their heart healthy and save some cow distress and chance hurting their reproduction (if that's what 's affected).



Please help!!



Lisa
post #2 of 32
excesive consumption of soy isn't that good for you (goes for about anything)



It seems that excesive use of soy stops growth earlier.
post #3 of 32
Soy contains phytoestrogens, not estrogens, which actually prevent hormonal imbalance caused by an excess of estrogens. Too much estrogen is bad news for both men and women, being associated both with increaded rates of breast and prostate cancer as well as the male menopause (this exists and is becoming more and more common. Symptoms can be similar to the female complaint, often with the development of man-breasts, yikes !) Cows milk contains estrogen. This is probably why rates of breast and prostate cancer are so much higher in countries where a lot of dairy is consumed and lower in countries where soy is eaten. There are details of some studies here : http://www.pslgroup.com/dg/f5206.htm
post #4 of 32
Thread Starter 
So reading this, I'm gathering soy would be better? My 3yo drinks a lot, like quarter to half of a half gallon a day. He loves the stuff. Sometimes he'll drink juice, we've also switched him to water at bed time. Rarely I let him have lemonade either because of too much sugar or because it has artificial sweetners in it. Any input would be great!



Lisa
post #5 of 32
I liked some rice-milks better than others (just like with the soy ones). Maybe there's a brand out there that you would all like?
post #6 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by sunshinet47 View Post

So reading this, I'm gathering soy would be better? My 3yo drinks a lot, like quarter to half of a half gallon a day. He loves the stuff. Sometimes he'll drink juice, we've also switched him to water at bed time. Rarely I let him have lemonade either because of too much sugar or because it has artificial sweetners in it. Any input would be great!



Lisa



Just a thought - you could make lemonade with stevia. I've found it very good in liquids as a sweetener, and its natural, calorie free, and not hyper-inducing.
post #7 of 32
I have heard this too, but why does it only apply to vegans, and not all those babys/toddlers who are not breastfed and given soybased formula?



Is there some kinda difference?



I have never heard anything wrong with soy formula with the exception of "breastmilk is best" so why pick on the vegans who feed their kids soymilk?



You could try other milk's such as rice or almond. Sometimes they are nice for a change anyway.
post #8 of 32
Oh, I liked almond milk the one time I tried it!
post #9 of 32
my kids drink soy. my son has been drinking soy milk since he was 14 months old, when he stopped nursing. he's six now and has no growth problems so far. my daughter is 2 1/2 and also drinks soy milk; she's in the 95th percentile on the growth charts. granted, they're still young, and who knows what the long term effects might be? about six months ago i started phasing out pretty much all beverages but for homemade soy milk and water. around the age of 3 kids stop needing milk in any form. water is the best beverage for human beings. everything else counts more as food. my kids will have about three cups of soy milk per day, each (in the morning with their cereal, at dinner time, and sometimes before bed). otherwise they drink water. at first there was a big hullabaloo about not keeping juice in the house but i was feeling pretty guilty about giving them all that sugar all day and it was affecting their behaviour. they wouldn't even touch a glass of water if they knew there was juice in the house. now they guzzle it all day.



so, my advice is to try and make sure your kids get all the nutrition they need from their foods, give them limited soy milk, and emphasize water as the beverage they should choose when thirsty.
post #10 of 32
http://www.vegetarianbaby.com/articl...strogens.shtml



Phytoestrogens appear in more places than just soy. Check out Cohen's article.



Lucy
post #11 of 32
I second the vote for Almond milk. We had Almond breeze the other day (chocolate flavor) and the boys downed it. I have the same concerns as my boys are 4 & 5 and I don't wanna do anything to harm them. I have basically decided this: soy will be in our diet, but soymilk will be limited to breakfast cereal use and the occasional cup to drink. We won't use soy foods for dinner more than a few times a week. Instead of trying to get them to eat soy "chicken" nuggets and hot dogs and the like, we are teaching them to eat more whole foods, especially fruits, veggies, beans and grains. Good luck!
post #12 of 32
They have been eating soy in Asia for thousands of years, and they have no reproduction problems there.



Soy is not by any means a "new" food.
post #13 of 32
Man, rice milk and almond milk are SO full of sugar...that would put them out of the running for me if I had kids. (Not judging any parents who choose those milks for their kids.)



I avoid GM soy (because it has a much higher allergy risk) and soy protein isolate (because it is a highly processed with dangerous chemicals). But other than that, I think soy is a healthy part of anyone's diet--man, woman or child--as long as it's consumed with a diet that's rich in a variety of foods.
post #14 of 32
My uncle used to drink soy milk everyday, and he started to grow breasts...I suppose he must have been drinking very large amounts.
post #15 of 32
Hmmm...my boyfriend drinks soymilk and eats tofu most every day and no breasts in sight....



I LOVE your avatar, Ocean--it's great!
post #16 of 32
post #17 of 32
Thanks Peebs!
post #18 of 32
Thank you for posting that peebs. I was starting to worry about this, being that my whole family drinks and eats a lot of soy. My son is only 6 so I was starting to get concerned...
post #19 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ocean View Post

My uncle used to drink soy milk everyday, and he started to grow breasts...I suppose he must have been drinking very large amounts.



I don't suppose your uncle also became overweight? Men tend to grow "breasts" when they get heavier, not that this is news or anything.
post #20 of 32
i've been doing some research on this as well, and i have found some compelling research that suggests that US (and i suppose western in general) consumption of soy is excessive. The amount that i read was that in asia, the average person consumes three grams of soy a day, where as a western 'RDA' is somewhere around 22 grams a day to be considered "heart healthy" among other things. So, the consumption is excessive in relationship to what asians commonly consume.



similarly, i haven't read much about it affecting size growth (as in, how tall, how much they'll weigh, etc), so much as affecting the sexual growth and development of boy children particularly. Some of the research that i've read discusses these ideas--which of course may be correlary rather than causary--but i would still take this information seriously.



Finally, when you're dealing with breast milk, it's a raw form, with far less estrogen per volume, or other hormones, than with a pasturized cow's (or goat's) milk. When you're talking about raw milk, in moderate to low consumption, the numbers or amounts of hormones per volume greatly decrease (as do antibodies etc) because you're actually looking at a broader nutrient spectrum particularly in regards to fat and protien. So, raw milk may be a better choice than soy milk. breast milk, of course being best for babies--and some ween earlier than others. Some as young as 12 or 14 months, others as old as 4 or 5 years old.



westonaprice.org may be a place to check out. they're not a veggie organization, but they have some interesting ideas and research that i've enjoyed reading.



also, ryan and i have decided to go off soy, taking our consumption down to 3 grams a day or less. I'm doing well on less. for the last three weeks, i've only had about 12 grams total. it's been an interesting journey.
post #21 of 32
I end up with about 18-20g of soy protein per day, depending on meals. Been eating soy now for two years. No adverse effects brought to my attention. My voice is as deep as ever.



That said, I'd prefer not to overconsume anything, but I'm not sure 18-20g could be considered over-consumption, based on what I've read. It is certainly more than eastern asians, but so is just about everything else I've seen. I think these fabled asians must generally eat about half the calories, too.
post #22 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rie View Post

Just a thought - you could make lemonade with stevia. I've found it very good in liquids as a sweetener, and its natural, calorie free, and not hyper-inducing.



Ohhh, thanks. This is new to me!



This is an interesting link about soy...

http://www.ynhh.org/online/nutrition/advisor/soy.html



It says the FDA suggests what would equal about three 8 oz glasses of soymilk per day. That sounds reasonable? However, the American Cancer Society says 2-3 oz per day, which is silly, yeah? That would mean we can only have 2-3 oz of soymilk per day?





You know, doing a google search, some of the anti-soy sites had "gov" as part of their address, lol....and also at another site a nutritionist warned about dreaded carnivorous infultrators spreading nasty rumours!
post #23 of 32
2-3 oz is what I think zoebird pointed out as east asians' daily intake. I haven't seen any compelling evidence to reduce my intake much, though I would like to drop it to low teens for moderation's sake, but I've been so busy as of late that I haven't had time to think, much less change the way I do things.
post #24 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moonflower View Post

I have heard this too, but why does it only apply to vegans, and not all those babys/toddlers who are not breastfed and given soybased formula?



Is there some kinda difference?



I have never heard anything wrong with soy formula with the exception of "breastmilk is best" so why pick on the vegans who feed their kids soymilk?



You could try other milk's such as rice or almond. Sometimes they are nice for a change anyway.



Actually Dr. Sears does reccomend against the use of soy formulas as well



http://www.askdrsears.com/html/0/T000100.asp#T031004



Right now my son is only 7 months old and is primarily breastfed... he gets some solids but still 90% of his diet is breastmilk. I still need to do more research on this before deciding how much soy milk he'll get if any... he does like it though since he stole a sip from me.
post #25 of 32
Oy. That man should have his "Doctor" title revoked.
post #26 of 32
epski:



well, you are a grown male. maybe it's different for a developing male? i dunno. it's just research and who knows what will be what whenever.



and, i probably get just a few calories. if an individual eats the "asian" type amounts, i would assume it's 1800 or so calories a day? for an adult anyway. but ryan needs 3000, sometimes more, so wouldn't his consumption of everything have to double?



anyway, we may have found a soy sensitivity in ryan that oddly cod liver oil with the requisite vit A and D seems to have helped with. Fragile boy. so weird. i could probably eat tin cans and be ok. lol
post #27 of 32
Thats my feeling too Zoebird... I really like Dr. Sears and he has given some great pediatric advice on many topics. I'm not sure how right he is about formula since its a non issue for me as I'm breastfeeding and don't ever plan on feeding DS formula of any kind. I only posted that to show that there in fact is debate in the medical world rather soy formula is as good as dairy formula.



DS got his first piece of tofu the other day at our babysitters house. He stole it from her husband who was eating it. I guess he really liked it. The problem is there is so much contradiction on this topic out there thats its hard to make a decision. I may avoid soy with him, but I want to avoid dairy too. They say your child should be 1 before you give them any dairy so we'll probally wait even longer than that. (I'm an ova-lacto veg so we don't have the same restictions but I still don't want him to have to much dairy or eggs as we eat it in moderation only) Atleast as far as milk goes I plan to let him self wean off of breastmilk so that should carry me for another year or so and than I'll revist it later. I guess everything in moderation is the key. I'm sure a little bit of soy won't hurt him any but I think we'll limit it. Problem is he really likes it even now, as he loved the tofu and soy milk he stole... ofcourse allergies make it more complicated for you. I don't think DS has any allergies accept to bananas atleast none that I know of.
post #28 of 32
I have mixed feeling about soy, on one hand it is such a great and easy source of protein, but on the other hand there are these various negative claims about it and although I don't buy into all of them, it does worry me a little. One thing I have tried to do is start giving the kids almond milk instead of soy, it doesn't have as much protein, but they eat a lot of fake meats (soy nuggets, vegan burgers, soy cheese) and I try to make sure they eat a lot of beans and nuts. It's so hard to know what the "right" amount of everything is, I just realized that the kids were getting a LOT of soy, (at least 2 big glasses of soy milk a day, soy meats, soy cheeses, ect.) and I know that anything in excess in unhealthy, so I am just trying to increase the amount of fresh produce and beans and nuts they eat and minimize the soy meat and milks (but not cut them out entirely) I just want to make sure they are getting enough calories and protein which is a little challenging on a high fiber diet - why can't anything ever just be simple?!
post #29 of 32
Um, I was raised on soy formula, and I am perfectly fine. (perhaps those who know me would disagree, hehe.) But seriously, I have no serious health problems, I had no growth problems, and I excelled in school and college, so I suppose no serious mental problems either (again, perhaps my friends would disagree ;-) )
post #30 of 32
lemonade:



use lemon juice, water, and stevia



throw in blender with some ice and you have frozen lemonade



it is wonderful!
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