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Disease curing benefits of a Soy diet !!

If you have heard about foods like tofu, you should also know that a certain ingredient called soy, that makes it even tastier. Soy can include soybeans, soy sauce etc. But more importantly, Soy diets have now been proven to also cure diseases.

Read and find out to see some of the diseases that can be cured when consuming a soy-enriched diet.

Soy protein may reduce symptoms of fatty liver disease !!

In a study carried out, it was found that soy protein could significantly reduce fat accumulation and triglycerides in the livers of obese patients by partially restoring the function of key signaling the pathway in the organ.

A percentage of the adults in the US alone have fatty liver disease. Some of them do not even display the symptoms which make it all the more confusing. Obesity is a key factor for this condition which can lead to liver failure.

How does the fat cause trouble?

Fat is metabolized in the liver, and the individuals who are obese, the transport of fat to the adipose tissue can slow down to the point at which the liver becomes a dumping ground for excess fat. 

When fat is accumulated in an organ which is not supposed to store fat, like the liver, the organ’s vital functions can be dangerously compromised.

The remedy

Eating soy protein, from sources like tofu and yogurt  appears to reduce some of the stress on fatty livers 

The experiment

Researchers conducted an experiment to see how the fat accumulation in the liver worked in obese and lean lab rats. The animals were assigned to either a diet containing casein, a milk-based protein, or a diet containing soy protein for a period of 17 weeks after weaning. 

The results showed - 

  • The diet had no effect on the liver of the lean animals.
  • However, the obese rats that were fed soy displayed a 20% reduction in triglycerides and overall fat accumulation in the liver.

Scientists have also discovered that soy protein isolates partially restored the Wnt/B -catenin , a protein signaling pathway, which is indirectly a crucial player in fat metabolism. Researchers concluded that in obese people, there is a sort of traffic like problem in their system and when more fat can make its way out of the liver, there is less pressure on the organ.

The research was carried out by Hong Chen an assistant professor of food science and human nutrition at the University of Illinois.

Soy diets may increase women’s bone strength !!

Three different problems that seem to be affecting women in recent times are Osteoporosis, decreased physical activity and weight gain. These problems can become serious health concerns for postmenopausal women. 

From studies conducted, researchers have now found that soy protein in food might counter the negative effects of menopause on both bones and metabolic health. Researchers also believe that soy protein might also have positive impacts on bone strength for women who may not have yet reached menopause.

One researcher recommends that women will eventually start seeing improved bone strength by adding some soy-based whole foods such as tofu and soy milk to their diet. Soy-based diets can also improve metabolic function for postmenopausal women.

A study was conducted on lab rats to study the effects of soy versus corn-based diets on rats. These rats were selectively bred to have low fitness levels. The rats were divided between those with and without ovaries to mimic the effects of menopause Previous studies have shown that these kinds of rats are good models for menopausal women. The researchers then compared the impact of the soy diet on bone strength and metabolic function to rats fed on a corn-based diet and a soy free diet.

Previous studies have shown that the rats were good models as average women in the US were found to be relatively inactive both before and especially after menopause. As such understanding how dietary protein source such as soy can impact metabolism and bone health in these rats that could help them understand better how such diets might impact women’s health across the lifespan.

 Researchers found that the tibia bones of the rats that were fed soy were stronger compared to the rats who were fed the corn-based diets, regardless of the ovarian hormone status.

They also found that the soy-based diet also improved the metabolic function of the rats both with and without the ovaries.

Researchers conclude that women might improve bone strength by adding some soy-based foods to their diet 

The research was carried out by Professor Pamela Hinton , professor of nutrition and exercise physiology and co-author Victoria Vieira Potter , an associate professor of nutrition and exercise physiology.

Soy diets can protect the heart from diseases!!

Researchers have found that a product of digesting a micronutrient found in soy may hold the key to why some people seem to derive a heart-protective benefit from eating soy foods while others do not.

Studies have shown that Japanese men are able to produce equol , a substance made by some types of good gut bacteria when they metabolize isoflavones.(micronutrients found in dietary soy), and they have lower levels of a risk factor for heart disease than their counterparts who aren’t able to produce it.

It was previously known that for some time isoflavones protect against the buildup of plaque in arteries known as atherosclerosis in monkeys and were also associated with lower rates of heart disease in people in Asian countries.   

The study !!

A researcher and his colleagues recruited 272 Japanese men aged 40to 49 and performed blood tests to find out if they were producing equol. After adjusting the other heart disease risk factors such as high blood pressure, cholesterol, smoking and obesity, the team discovered that the equol producers had 90%  lower odds of coronary artery calcification, a predictor of heart disease than the equol non-producers. 

The daily intake of dietary isoflavones found in traditional soy foods such as tofu, miso and soy milk is 25 to 50 milligrams in China and Japan while it is less than 2 milligrams in Western countries. 

Equol is available as a supplement which bypasses the need for gut bacteria to produce it. However one researcher goes on to say that no clinical trials have been performed to determine a safe dosage for heart-protective effects or if it even does provide any such protection. 

The researchers conclude by saying that isoflavones may be linked with protection against a wide range of medical conditions like -

  • Osteoporosis
  • Dementia
  • Menopausal hot flashes
  • Prostate and Breast Cancer

However, equol might be a lifesaver as it could have a stronger effect on these diseases.

The study was carried out by Akira Sekikawa, M.D., Ph.D., an Associate Professor of epidemiology at Pitt Public Health along with a group of researchers.