Are Phytoestrogens in Soy and Broccoli Hazardous?
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We began this archive as a means of assisting our visitors in answering many of their health and diet questions, and in encouraging them to take a pro-active part in their own health. We believe the articles and information contained herein are true, but are not presenting them as advice. We, personally, have found that a whole food vegan diet has helped our own health, and simply wish to share with others the things we have found. Each of us must make our own decisions, for it's our own body. If you have a health problem, see your own physician.
Are Phytoestrogens in Soy and Broccoli Hazardous?
George Bush, Sr. avoided broccoli, and in doing so, angered America's all-powerful and politically connected broccoli lobby. As a result, Bush was not re-elected and served only one term.
OK, so I exaggerate a bit, but Bush's dislike for cruciferous vegetables was legendary. Were the instincts of ex-President Bush correct?
According to Mercola.com and his group of soy-bashers (soyonlineservice.com, Sally Fallon, and the Price Pottinger Institute), broccoli is also a deadly poison and must be avoided. So too, for that matter, should you never again eat seeds, whole grains, berries, fruit, vegetables, nuts, or sprouts. Let's explore why.
Despite the fact that phytoestrogens (plant estrogens) are not steroids like human estrogen, there are those who would have you induce vomiting, if ever you swallowed a soy product containing isoflavones. My advice to you is to not swallow their illogical line of reasoning.
For each milligram of phytoestrogens that she eats in soy products, the average American woman will also consume an additional four milligrams of phytoestrogens from fruits and vegetables. Advice to abstain from phytoestrogens is insanity, and Internet hype and hysteria has infected the good judgement of many so-called health advocates. This includes many ignorant physicians, who read one such article and assimilate just enough information to offer erroneous and dangerous health advice to their patients.
Phytoestrogens are widely distributed in plants. There are three categories of phytoestrogens--isoflavones (which are found in soy), lignans (seeds, fruits and veggies), and coumestans (broccoli and sprouts).
So, if you take the advice of Internet soy-bashing ignoramuses and do not drink soymilk because you fear phytoestrogens, by all means, you must give up fruits, veggies, nuts, and grains too.
The only reason that phytoestrogens are considered to be very dangerous is that the name sounds like estrogen, even though they are not steroid hormones, and even though their mechanisms of action do not mimic estrogen. Beware of phytoestrogens, you are told. Like the "boogeyman," phytoestrogens in fruit and veggies are gonna get you while you sleep.
A publication in the February 2004 issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (R. Ziegler, 2004;79:183-4) suggests that women who eat high levels of soy isoflavones have lower rates of breast cancer than those who consume low levels of isoflavones.
Dr. Regina Ziegler is a researcher with the National Cancer Institute. She has taught health and nutrition courses at Yale and Harvard Universities. Ziegler writes:
"The daily intake of phytoestrogens in white U.S women has been estimated to be <1 mg, with 80% from lignans, 20% from isoflavones, and <0.1 from coumestans."
In other words, according to Ziegler, an expert in her field, Americans eat four times the amount of phytoestrogens in fruit and veggies as they do from soy products.
"Historically, breast cancer rates in the United States have been 4-7 times those in Asia, whereas isoflavone intake in the United States is <1% that in Asian populations."
So should you take Mercola's advice and eliminate soy and all fruits and vegetables because of phytoestrogens?
Should you also follow his dietary advice by eating raw milk and dairy products and raw meat? If you follow Mercola, you will be led into a cave with other Neanderthals.
You might consider contrary advice. An apple a day does keep the doctor away because of those magical phytoestrogens. So too do brown rice and almonds, broccoli, and fresh sprouts. Go heavy on the soy.
Dead raw flesh and cooked animal parts should not be served with body fluids from diseased animals.
Every cell in your miraculous body craves life, not death. Cells and enzymes from carrots and oranges.
Green plants containing chlorophyll, and calcium with magnesium in a proportion that is efficiently utilized by the human body. A rose will never become a dead chicken, even if it is so re-named. Neither would a phytoestrogen become a steroid hormone, nor act like one.
For health, eat isoflavones and phytoestrogens. Your body will thank you.
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