Soybeans were originally grown as a cover crop to be turned into the soil as fertilizer. Somewhere along the line someone got the idea to make it into feed for animals and than somewhere further down the line someone decided it was good for people. But soybeans have an enzyme inhibitor that prevents them from being digested properly. Babies fed soy formula cry because of the gas it creates in their tummies. This soy, because it is unable to be broken down in the body, can affect the hormone regulation and many physicians warn that it can contribute to breast cancer. The soy protein isolates in foods such as tofu, soymilk and edamame have potentially anti-nutritive value due to their high phyate and oxalic acid levels.
But, there is a good side of soy too. When the soybean is fermented or sprouted this enzyme inhibitor disappears and thus the soy can be digested allowing nutritive bioavailability without the possible ill effects of the uncultured soybean. It displays characteristics of a selective estrogen receptor (ER) modulator (SERM) rather than an estrogen (Pike et al. 1999). What this means is that the beneficial isoflavone precursors (know to be used in cancer treatment) can be converted to their active forms, genestein and diadzein. However, genistein, with few exceptions, is not a major isoflavone of most soy foods and products consumed in Western countries, unless these have undergone fermentation, as in traditional foods such as tempeh, natto, and to some extent miso (Coward et al. 1993).
Soybeans are rich in nitrogen, polysaccharides, selenium, zinc, vitamin Bs, D2, E and K1, but this are less available unless the bean is sprouted or fermented. In addition to the nutritive value, fermented soy is a great source of protein that is lactose-free and vegan. With bodybuilders, dieters and health conscious individuals looking for a good meal replacement, a fermented soy product with added curcumin as an anti-inflammatory should be considered. Not only will you be getting a nutritious meal substitute, but you will be ingesting the disease fighting benefits of the isoflavones. So next time you go looking for a soy product make sure it is fermented or sprouted.
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- Pike AC, Brzozowski AM, Hubbard RE, Bonn T, Thorsell AG, Engström O, et al. Structure of the ligand-binding domain of oestrogen receptor beta in the presence of a partial agonist and a full antagonist. EMBO J. 1999;18:4608–4618. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
- Coward L, Barnes NC, Setchell KDR, Barnes S. Genistein and daidzein, and their glycosides conjugates: anti-tumor isoflavones in soybean foods from American and Asian diets. J Agric Food Chem. 1993;41:1961–1967.
Posted in Diet
Tagged anti-inflammatory, cancer, Curcumin, digestive problems, fermented soy, JIVA, meal replacement, miso, prevent cancer, soy, soybean, soymilk, tofu, unfermented soy
Reprinted from the blog: Jivahealthnews.wordpress.com
Soy contains 42 percent protein, more than any other plant.36 It’s high in fiber. It’s a natural source of good-for-you omega-3 fatty acids. It’s a powerhouse of protective antioxidants and phyto-nutrients (beneficial compounds found in plants). It provides a wealth of vitamins, including vitamins A (as beta-17 carotene), B1, B2, B12, C, D, E, and K – and several essential minerals, such as selenium and zinc.
Cultured (fermented) Soy vs. Uncultured Soy In order to reap the nutritional benefits of soy, it must be cultured. Culturing simply means adding beneficial microbial cultures to a food and letting them transform it into something more nutritious and digestible. Yogurt, sour cream, kefir, and pickles are all examples of cultured foods.
The Importance of Culturing If you take a trip to China, Japan, Indonesia, or Singapore, you’ll find that the traditional Asian diet does not include large quantities of super-processed, genetically modified soy products like we have in Western countries today (such as isolated soy protein, a common ingredient found in nutrition bars). It incorporates small amounts of natural, cultured whole soy foods, such as natto (cultured soybeans), miso (a condiment made from cultured soybean paste), shoyu (soy sauce or tamari), and tempeh (a compact cultured soybean cake).
Bad Soy & Anti-Nutrients Soy wasn’t even considered edible until fermentation techniques were developed during the Chou Dynasty. What the producers of modern, uncultured soy foods won’t tell you is that in addition to all the nutrients it contains, soy also contains anti-nutrients. These anti-nutrients prevent your body from absorbing essential minerals and trace elements. Unfortunately, cooking will not destroy these anti-nutrients. Only the culturing process will. Another benefit of culturing is that it makes it easier for your body to digest and absorb the goodness of soy. When you culture a food, you’re basically using beneficial microbial cultures to pre-digest it. Those cultures transform large, hard-to-digest molecules into small, easy-to-digest ones. Not only that, culturing soy also reduces its allergic qualities. (Soy is one of the most common food allergens.)
According to two newly published research papers, tests in samples of human blood showed that when soy is cultured, its potential to produce an allergic reaction is reduced by as much as 99 percent. The most important benefit of culturing, though, is that the process is thought to convert certain phyto-nutrients, called genistein and daidzein, into their active forms, genistein and daidzein. Both genistein and daidzein are powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agents that have been shown in voluminous laboratory studies to work in multiple ways to support optimal health.
[Editor note: we use the JIVA Fermented Soy/Curcumin Nutritional Beverage Mix for guarding against cancer, strokes and heart attacks as explained in the book “Prevent Cancer, Strokes, Heart Attacks and other Deadly Killers” by Dr. Vijaya Nair. This tastes like a ginger cookie.. yum! Click on the link on our blog for ForeverYoungCooperative. They carry it.]