Tuesday, February 14, 2006


Natural HDL Booster Increases 'Good' HDL Cholesterol, Reduces Cardiovascular Risk

Everyone knows that high cholesterol increases the risk of heart attacks and strokes, while lowering cholesterol reduces the risk and keeps the heart and blood vessels healthy. Statins are the drugs most often prescribed to lower cholesterol, but they often produce serious side effects including liver irritation, muscle pain and degeneration, and significant depletion of CoQ10 in the body, a deficit that can actually lead to heart disease.

"While reducing total or 'bad' LDL cholesterol has been the primary focus of cholesterol management strategies, recent research indicates that raising 'good' HDL cholesterol levels may provide even greater protection against cardiovascular disease," says Dennis Goodman, MD, former Chief of Cardiology and Medical Director of the Cardiac Treatment Center at Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla, California. "It is estimated that every 1 percent increase in HDL can decrease the risk for heart disease by 2 percent in men and 3 percent in women," he explains. "This is especially important because a low HDL level is one of the most common cholesterol problems found in people with heart disease."

In a 6-month pilot study completed at Scripps Memorial Hospital in 2003, Dr. Goodman and principal investigator George Dennish, MD, tested a comprehensive cardiovascular nutritional supplement and found that it increased HDL up to 23 percent, a statistically significant rise that would also indicate reduced risk of heart disease. The study, which involved 50 patients with varying cardiovascular histories, found no serious adverse effects following supplementation and demonstrated the combination is safe to use with statin drugs.

The vitamins and minerals in the heart-healthy supplement included vitamins C, E, B6, B12, niacin, folic acid, magnesium and selenium, with protein-building amino acids, powerful antioxidants, such as coenzyme Q10, alpha lipoic acid (ALA), N-acetyl cysteine (NAC), and policosanol, and extracts of hawthorn, garlic, grape seed, soy isoflavones, all of which have been shown to beneficially affect heart health.

After three months of supplementation, good cholesterol levels increased in all groups and the overall lipid profile (i.e., HDL, HDL-2, triglycerides, homocysteine) had improved. The changes were more pronounced at the six-month marker, when levels of HDL-2 (the very best cholesterol) rose up to 24.4 percent. Additionally, the supplement helped reduce triglycerides levels by approximately 30 percent. These changes were even more impressive in "at risk" groups (i.e., those with HDL levels of less than 40) where total HDL increased by 23 percent after six months, HDL-2 rose by 50 percent, and triglycerides decreased by nearly 40 percent. Decreases in homocysteine, an amino acid found in the blood that has been inversely linked to cardiovascular health, were observed as well.

"Since we know that an increase in HDL - as little as one percent - can reduce heart disease risk by two to three percent, these findings have powerful implications for the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease," says Dr. Goodman. "We are excited by these findings because they show the efficacy of essential vitamins and minerals, at levels recommended by the American Heart Association, along with important amino acids, potent antioxidants and traditional herbal extracts for cardiovascular protection without the risk of serious side effects." Dr. Goodman concludes, "This research could open a new chapter in cardiovascular therapy that will complement, improve upon, and in certain cases, even replace drug-dominated treatments."

From The Soy Daily

Saturday, February 04, 2006


Soy Lowers Cholesterol and High Blood Pressure

Soy may protect from high cholesterol which leads to heart disease and stroke

A diet low in fat and rich in soy protein helps lower cholesterol and may help reduce risk of heart disease, scientists have found.

Two daily servings of soy protein can lower blood cholesterol levels by as much as 9 percent, according to a new study by a scientist at the University of Kentucky – Lexington.

Researchers found that soy protein resulted in a 12.9 percent average reduction in LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels.

American Heart Association publicly acknowledged that soy protein was a high quality, heart healthy protein source. Many foods containing soy protein are considered beneficial because of their high content of polyunsaturated fats, fiber, vitamins, minerals and low content of saturated fat.

Researchers have found other ways in which soy protein may help reduce a person’s risk for cardiovascular diseases. Blood clots, for example, can completely block an artery that has already been narrowed by atherosclerosis.

Certain properties of soyfoods may help prevent these blockages from occurring, thereby reducing the chances of heart attack or stroke.

Cardiovascular diseases kill more than 16 million people worldwide and account for some 30 percent of all deaths each year. In the United States, heart disease and stroke, the main components of cardiovascular disease, account for nearly 40 percent of all adult deaths. Physicians have known for many years that lifestyle change helps prevent heart attack and stroke.

From the Fashion Monitor

Friday, February 03, 2006


Weight Loss Success

There is a new blog on weight loss. This is not specifically about soy products, but there is some good info here.

Visit the site

Thursday, February 02, 2006


Soy Plays Important Role in an Overall Healthy Diet

Low in Saturated Fat, Soyfoods Provide Dietary Fiber, High-Quality Protein and Key Vitamins and Minerals

Media coverage of a recent statement by the American Heart Association failed to note that soy protein could reduce coronary heart disease (CHD) at a level that would positively affect the nation's public health, according to experts at the global Soy Nutrition Institute.

According to Dr. Mark Messina, adjunct associate professor and internationally recognized expert on the health effects of soyfoods, sufficient amounts of soy protein could potentially reduce CHD at the population level by as much as 10 percent.

"Soy protein alone is certainly not going to bring cholesterol levels down to the target goal in hypercholesterolemics (people with high blood cholesterol), but soy's modest cholesterol lowering effect by itself is beneficial. Plus, soyfoods are a good substitution for foods higher in saturated fat, which helps consumers follow an overall heart-healthy diet," says Messina.

In fact, the AHA Nutrition Committee noted that soy products such as tofu, soy butter, soy nuts and soy burgers should be beneficial to cardiovascular and overall health. The report concludes soyfoods should be considered beneficial because of their high content of polyunsaturated fat, fiber, vitamins, minerals and their low content of saturated fat and cholesterol. Additionally, soyfoods can substitute for other foods that are known to contribute to blood cholesterol levels.

The AHA's recent advisory statement on Soy Protein, Isoflavones and Cardiovascular Health has focused media attention on the modest effects of soy protein in lowering cholesterol levels in individuals. The AHA found an overall reduction in LDL cholesterol of three percent, which would translate into a six percent reduction of CHD risk (based on a one percent cholesterol reduction equaling a two percent CHD risk). However, Messina cites a recent meta-analysis of 33 studies involving more than 1,749 subjects, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, which showed that the addition of soy protein to the diet resulted in a 5.3 percent reduction in LDL cholesterol, which translates into a 10 percent CHD risk reduction. The impact on a public health basis could be significant and reduce CHD morbidity and mortality rates. Intriguing evidence also suggests that soy may exert other coronary benefits such as decreasing triglycerides and improving blood vessel elasticity.

Soyfoods' health benefits extend far beyond heart health. Some cancer researchers are beginning to believe that prostate and colon cancer progression can be impacted by dietary changes that include soy consumption. More research is beginning to show a stronger role for soy in bone health, as well, and many soyfoods contain calcium. Finally, research on menopause indicates that soy may help offer relief for women who experience greater numbers of hot flushes each day, though there is a great variability in responses.

Soyfoods have been enjoyed worldwide as a dietary staple for their versatility and great taste. Registered dietitian Kerry Neville offers simple ideas to add a little healthy soy to the diet. "Try starting the day with a soymilk-based smoothie, sprinkling green soybeans called edamame onto the salad you serve with dinner or popping a soy burger in the microwave for a quick and convenient lunch," Neville suggests.

SNI is a non-profit organization dedicated to the improvement of the general public's well-being through support for research and communication of soy nutrition science. SNI is a 501(c)3 organization with an independent Board of Directors drawn from industry, trade and farmer groups and professional health organizations. Primary functions of SNI include prioritizing and funding health and nutrition-oriented research deemed most important in understanding the benefits of soy and its effects on human health.

A non-profit organization founded in 1979, Soyfoods Association of North America (SANA) represents more than 50 members, comprised of large and small soyfoods companies, growers and suppliers of soybeans, nutritionists, equipment representatives, food scientists, and retailers. SANA encourages sustainability, integrity, and growth of the soyfoods industry by promoting the benefits of soy-based foods, and is committed to increasing consumer awareness, establishing and adopting standards for new and existing soyfoods, and being the key resource on soyfoods and ingredients in the industry. For more information, visit their website at www.soyfoods.org.

SOURCE Soy Nutrition Institute; Soyfoods Association of North America

From thesoydaily.com

Wednesday, February 01, 2006


New Soyfoods without 'Beany' Flavor (soyatech.com)

University of Georgia food scientists have developed new soybean food products that have all the health benefits but less of the beany taste of most soybean products.

The scientists used L-Star soybeans, a new variety developed by the National Agricultural Research Organization in Japan. A naturally deodorized soybean, L-Star is lipoxygenase-free.

"This is the enzyme that produces the off flavor in some soybean food products," said Dick Phillips, a food scientist with the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. "With L-Star, consumers can get the health benefits of soybeans' polyunsaturated fatty acids in better-tasting products. Until now, it's been good for the heart, bad for the taste buds."

With funding from the American Soy & Tofu Corporation and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Federal-State Marketing Improvement Program, UGA food scientist Yen-Con Hung, along with Phillips and UGA food scientist Anna Resurreccion, developed a new soybean product using L-Star beans.

"We started with a new soy milk because this is an established product that's available commercially," Hung said. "These are whole bean products."

Traditional soy milk is made by grinding soaked soybeans with water and then filtering out solid and insoluble materials, he said. The new L-Star soy milk is made by grinding the soybeans with water and not filtering out the solids.

A sensory specialist, Resurreccion conducted consumer studies last fall on the UGA campus in Griffin, Ga. The study revealed high consumer acceptance of the L-star soy milk. "The consumers we tested think the quality is equal to commercial soy milk," Hung said. "They like the color, appearance and taste, too."

Another new product UGA scientists are working on is tofu made from L-Star soybean curd.

"It's also a whole-bean product, so consumers get the nutritional and health-related benefits from consuming whole beans versus only the soluble part of the soybeans," Hung said.

Under Hung's leadership, UGA food science graduate student, Mark Jarrard Jr. is working on an instant soy milk using L-Star soybeans.

To make it into the marketplace, the products must be developed by a food company, Hung said. The next stage of the project is to garner industry interest in the products.

Besides the new L-Star food products, Phillips created a quality control test. The test will assure soybean buyers they are truly buying L-Star soybeans.

"Soybeans are harvested and brought by trucks to a central buying point," Phillips said. "With the existing tests, there's a whole menu of things buyers look for, quality-wise. But they don't test for lipoxygenase."

The existence of the enzyme would let buyers know the beans are not L-Star. Lab methods that test for the enzyme aren't feasible at a buying point, he said.

Phillips' test uses color as an indicator to test soybeans for lipoxygenase. A buyer takes a sample from the load, crushes the beans, places them in a tube and shakes them.

"If the color fades, the beans contain the enzyme and the buyer knows they aren't L-Star soybeans," Phillips said.

Working with the Georgia-Florida Soybean Association, UGA scientists shared the test with a handful of buyers who are testing it in the field.

The test project was funded in part by the Georgia Agricultural Commission for Soybeans.

From Soyatech.com

Wednesday, January 25, 2006



A recent report of the Nutrition Committee of the American Heart Association (AHA) has caused some confusion about the heart health benefits of soy protein, and some media stories have misrepresented the report’s findings. This statement is intended to outline the facts concerning soy protein and heart health.

FACT: Experts Agree Soy Protein Lowers Cholesterol

The AHA research review found that soy protein lowers blood cholesterol above and beyond that realized from a low fat, low cholesterol diet. This finding is consistent with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recognizing that soy protein lowers cholesterol by between 3 and 8 percent.

FACT: Experts Agree Soy Protein Has Additional Heart Health Benefits

The AHA report noted that soy foods are heart healthy because of their high content of polyunsaturated fats, fiber, vitamins, minerals and low content of saturated fat, making them an ideal substitute for less healthy foods that are high in saturated fat and cholesterol. The FDA and, similarly, the AHA have agreed that soy foods appear to modestly lower triglycerides and raise HDL (“Good”) blood cholesterol levels.

FACT: Seven Governments Recognize the Heart Health Benefits of Soy

Authorities around the world have approved health claims supporting the consumption of soy protein and a lowering of blood cholesterol, including the USA, Korea, Japan, Brazil, Philippines, Indonesia and the United Kingdom. These claims were approved based on an extensive review of scientific literature to determine that the relationship between soy protein and lowered cholesterol was well established. It’s the weight of this scientific evidence that led so many government health authorities to approve soy/heart health claims.

FACT: Soy Protein is a Food, Not a Prescription Drug

Soy foods have the unique ability to both lower LDL (“Bad”) cholesterol and lower triglycerides, but not to the degree expected from cholesterol-lowering medications. That soy products have been found to lower blood cholesterol even a small amount, however, has the potential to dramatically impact public health. One may argue whether a 3 – 8 percent reduction in cholesterol is “clinically “significant,” but the bottom line is that heart disease depends on small life changes. Neither pharmaceuticals nor soy foods are by themselves panaceas for a healthy heart.

FACT: Research into Soy Protein and Heart Health Will Continue

Physicians have known for many years that lifestyle change helps prevent heart attack and stroke. Only recently, however, have scientists begun to study how a diet rich in soy protein helps lower cholesterol. In 1999, The Solae Company successfully petitioned the FDA to issue an unqualified health claim for soy protein and coronary heart disease. Our company will continue to invest in nutrition research that helps consumers make more informed decisions about what they eat.

From solae.com

Monday, January 23, 2006


Growing Fan Base For Soy

While the popularity of dairy milk still has its four legs planted firmly on the ground, another milk, actually planted in the ground, is growing in acceptance.

Welcome to the joy of soy.

“There has definitely been an increase in interest in soy milk,” said Terri Gleason, manager of Wegman's Nature's Market, of Auburn. “It's been growing steadily since '77 when Nature's Market opened.”

There are soy chips, soy cereals, soy crisps, soy nuts, soy powder, soy paste and, for desert: soy ice-cream.

“People in general are being more conscious of the health benefits,” Gleason said. “With dairy milk, the cows have hormone injections and there are hormones in the feed they eat.”

Representatives from Natur-Tyme, a health food store in Syracuse, say some doctors have begun suggesting soy capsules as an alternative for hormone replacement therapy, because they no longer feel confident prescribing estrogen. They say the flavones genistein and daidzen can be harmful, since hormone levels vary with every woman.

A recent magazine article purporting a relation between soy and the lessoning of “hot-flashes” and incidents of breast cancer occurring with Japanese women, failed to recognize that Japanese women eat large quantities of seaweed and seafood, which contain iodine, which in turn can produce a balancing effect on the thyroid.

“A lot of times, it is because people are allergic to dairy milk,” said Mary Ryan, floor manager of Natur-Tyme. “Also, vegans won't eat anything from animals.”

Quality soy product names are Silk, Miso, and Tempeh, she said, adding, “Ice cream made of soy is very tasty.”

Sipping a soy latte from Wegman's, Patsy Heisler, of Auburn, said “I enjoy the flavor, and the health benefits for women.”

“I was raised a vegetarian so I've been eating tofu and using soy all my life, so now my kids are vegetarian,” said her mother Sue Heisler, adding, “Eighth Continent chocolate soy milk is really good.”

Continued at Auburnpub.com

Sunday, January 22, 2006


Raw Soy Lowers Cholesterol Level

Two servings a day of soy protein - such as that found in tofu, soy milk or soy powder - can lower cholesterol levels by as much as 9% as long as the soy is uncooked, a study has said.

Soy-fortified foods in which the soy protein was baked at high temperatures do not provide the benefit, study author James Anderson said.

An 8% to 9% drop in low-density lipoprotein, the so-called bad cholesterol that can lead to heart disease, can be gained from eating uncooked soy protein in the form of two 340 ml servings of soy milk daily, said Anderson, a scientist at the University of Kentucky in Lexington.

The health benefit also is found in such products as soy nuts, soy powder sprinkled on food or in milkshakes.

"Soy protein increases the activity of low-density lipoprotein receptors primarily on the liver that clears it from the body," he said. "Eating soy protein increases the activity of the enzymes that break down the cholesterol."

In the studies reviewed, the cholesterol drop showed up after about a month.

If the recommended two servings of soy were doubled in size, that would lower blood cholesterol by another 1% to 2%, so the optimal effect comes from two modest servings. Eating the soy foods all at once would overwhelm the body's ability to process so they must be consumed in two separate servings, he said, comparing soy to a fast-acting drug that must be taken in doses hours apart.Cooking scrambles the amino acids contained in soy proteins and all but eliminates the health benefit, he said.

from allafrica.com

Saturday, January 21, 2006


Up to 30 mg of soy isoflavone supplement is safe

From Crisscross News
"TOKYO — A government food safety panel investigating the safety standard for soy isoflavone, a plant chemical widely believed to prevent osteoporosis and cancer, broadly agreed Monday that a daily intake of around 30 milligrams of isoflavone through supplement is safe, in addition to intake through regular diet.

The Cabinet Office's Food Safety Commission said 30 mg of isoflavone equals the amount contained in about 150 grams or a half block of tofu. Isoflavone is widely believed to prevent osteoporosis caused by declining estrogen in older women."

Get 16mg to 20g of soy isoflavones in one bar or shake at Revival Soy (RevivalSoy.com), which has a patented bar and shake formula.

Friday, January 20, 2006


Soy Many Scares, Soy Little Time

Soy worsens heart disease! Or at least, that's what all the papers would be saying today if soy were an industrial chemical, or even a pesticide. A study published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation found that soy-filled diets increased the likelihood of heart disease -- in certain male mice.

Reports by Reuters and others on the study emphasized scientists' cautions that the study has no clear implications for humans -- but the same could be said for virtually every chemical scare that makes headlines, based as they are upon high-dose rodent studies with little relevance to ordinary-dose human exposures. Reporters, politicians, and regulators automatically fall in line to condemn the latest purported threat (as gauged solely by rodent tests) from industry, but when the "threat" is just as "real" -- and comes from nature -- society moves quietly onward, unperturbed.

If the precautionary principle (by which environmentalists decree that no substance should be used if it shows even the slightest potential for harm) and EPA regulations (such as the ones inspiring ACSH's recent petition) were applied to nature as readily as to manmade products, we'd have to ban half the molecules on the planet.

Not only environmental activists but most people who shop at Whole Foods Markets or similar stores will tell you that there is a chance that non-organic products could be harmful -- and that until they have proof otherwise, it's "better to be safe than sorry" and so they will avoid the mainstream food. To be intellectually consistent -- however foolish -- these shoppers and the organic stores themselves would have to immediately pull all soy products off the market until we have 100% proof that this one animal study doesn't apply to humans.

But nature is in, industry is out, and soy will no doubt get a free ride from the people who usually serve as scaremongers.

From American Council on Science and Health

Thursday, January 19, 2006


Soy May Help Prevent Breast Cancer in Older Women

MONDAY, Jan 16 (HealthDay News) -- A diet rich in soy, with its natural plant estrogens or isoflavones, may help protect postmenopausal women with relatively high levels of estrogen from getting breast cancer, preliminary research suggests.

Women past menopause who have low estrogen levels probably won't derive the same risk reduction, but they can probably be assured the soy isn't harmful in terms of breast cancer risk, said Charles E. Wood, an instructor of pathology at Wake Forest University.

"If you have high estrogen, the isoflavones could block the adverse effects of your body's own estrogen [on the breast tissue,]" said Wood, who based his views on his team's study involving postmenopausal monkeys, published in the Jan. 15 issue of Cancer Research.

Wood's study adds new fuel to the ongoing debate surrounding soy's effect on cancer risk. "There's been a good deal of confusing information, particularly with soy's effect on [breast] cancer risk," said Wood.

"Most population-based studies have found that women who consume lots of soy are less likely to develop breast cancer," he said. "A number of studies have been done, and they generally show a positive effect [of soy] or no effect."

But in lab studies, Wood said, isoflavones from soy -- which have a structure similar to estrogen -- have been found to stimulate breast cancer cells grown in a petri dish and induced estrogen-like effects.

"Our hypothesis was that the amount of estrogen in the body may help determine whether soy was having good or bad effects," he said. "If you have very low estrogen, high doses of soy could have adverse estrogen-like effects on your reproductive tissue. If you had high estrogen, the isoflavones could block the adverse effects of your body's own estrogen."

"That was our working hypothesis." Wood and his team used a postmenopausal monkey model. They first selected out a high-estrogen group of monkeys and a low-estrogen group. Next, they fed each group four different diets for 16 weeks each, along with a high or a low dose of estrogen.

The diets included either no isoflavones; 60 milligrams of isoflavones (similar to the typical Asian diet); 120 milligrams (highest amount that can be obtained via diet alone); or 240 milligrams (levels that must be obtained via supplements).

Continued at Forbes.com

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Soy isoflavones may not raise markers for breast cancer in postmenopausal women and could protect them against the disease, suggests a new animal study published in the Jan. 15 issue of the journal "Cancer Research."

In the study, Charles Wood and colleagues from Wake Forest Univ. Baptist Medical Center gave eight different diets to 31 postmenopausal cynomolgus monkeys to see the effect of soy isoflavones on breast cancer risk.

The diets varied with soy isoflavones and estrogen. Isoflavones were used in different amounts: 0 mg, 60 mg (comparable to a typical Asian diet), 120 mg, and 240 mg isoflavones.

Estrogen was used at either a low or high level.

Researchers found isoflavones did not affect breast cancer markers in those receiving diets with low estrogen. Those receiving diets with zero or low isoflavones were more likely to have increased breast cell proliferation, a breast cancer marker.

For those using diets with high levels of estrogen and isoflavones, the effect of estrogen was blocked by the isoflavones.

The findings suggest that women at high risk of estrogen-dependent breast cancer may benefit from a diet rich in soy isoflavones.

Continued at foodconsumer.org

Tuesday, January 17, 2006


Soy Phytoestrogens May Block Estrogen Effects in Some Women

Research in monkeys suggests that the natural plant estrogens found in soy do not increase markers of breast cancer risk in postmenopausal women. In fact, they may provide a protective effect in some women. The research is reported today in Cancer Research.

“Even at high doses, we found no evidence that the estrogen-like compounds in soy, called isoflavones, stimulate cell growth or other markers for cancer risk in breast tissue,” said Charles E. Wood, D.V.M., Ph.D., lead researcher, from Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center. “The study also suggests that women who have higher levels of estrogen may actually gain a protective effect from higher doses of soy isoflavones.”

Wood said there has been much debate about whether higher levels of dietary soy are safe or beneficial for postmenopausal women. Some evidence has suggested that isoflavones may protect against the more powerful estrogen produced by the body, which is an important risk factor for breast cancer in postmenopausal women. For example, population studies show that women who consume diets high in soy generally have lower rates of breast cancer.

On the other hand, soy isoflavones have been shown to stimulate breast cancer cells in mice and in cells grown in the laboratory.

“Our study sought to make sense of these seemingly contradictory data,” said Wood. “Our hypothesis was that estrogen levels in the body may influence the effects of soy isoflavones.”

Wood and colleagues evaluated the effects of dietary isoflavones in the presence of different levels of estrogen by rotating 31 postmenopausal cynomolgus monkeys through eight different diets. Each diet contained one of four different isoflavone doses along with either a low or a high dose of estrogen.

Isoflavone doses were equivalent to the following human levels: no isoflavones, 60 milligrams (comparable to the typical Asian diet), 120 milligrams (the highest levels that can be consumed through diet alone), or 240 milligrams (levels obtained through supplements). Estrogen doses were designed to mimic either a low or high-estrogen environment found in postmenopausal women. Estrogen levels in postmenopausal women can vary depending on their amounts of body fat, which produces estrogen, and whether they are taking hormone therapy.

More at Newswise.com

Monday, January 16, 2006


Vegetarian Protein Diet Cuts Health Risk

A high protein diet can help reduce blood pressure - but only if it comes from vegetables, researchers reported today.

The findings may explain why some research has suggested that a high protein diet can benefit blood pressure, according to researcher Dr Paul Elliott, of Imperial College, London, UK.

The researchers studied information about 4,680 people from four countries.

Volunteers were studied for three to six weeks, their blood pressure measured and details of their diet recorded.

The findings, reported in the Archives of Internal Medicine, show no link between animal protein and blood pressure levels.

But consuming vegetable protein, such as soy, led to a reduction in blood pressure.

The researchers believe that amino acids - the building blocks of life - may play a role as they differ between animal and vegetable protein.

High blood pressure is a symptomless condition but creates a high risk of stroke and heart disease.

Dr Elliott and his colleagues write: "Our results are consistent with current recommendations that a diet high in vegetable products be part of a healthy lifestyle for prevention of high blood pressure and related chronic diseases."

Saturday, January 14, 2006


Higher Intake of Vegetable Protein Associated with Lower Blood Pressure Levels

From thesoydaily.com

People who eat more protein from vegetables tend to have lower blood pressure, according to a new study in the January 9 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Most adults have either high blood pressure (hypertension) or prehypertensive blood pressure levels, according to background information in the article. Previous studies have found evidence that meat eaters generally have higher blood pressure than vegetarians. Other research looked directly at the effect of high overall protein intake and found that people with higher total protein intake are likely to have lower blood pressure, the authors report.

Paul Elliott, M.B., Ph.D., from Imperial College London, and colleagues analyzed data from the INTERMAP study, which included 4,680 people (2,359 men and 2,321 women) aged 40 to 59 years from four countries. They measured each participant’s systolic and diastolic blood pressure eight times at four visits in a three- to six-week period. Each person wrote down everything they had eaten and drank during the previous 24 hours, including dietary supplements, at each visit. Urine samples were also taken on the first and third examinations.

Judging by their food records and urine samples, those who ate more vegetable protein were more likely to have lower blood pressure than those who ate less vegetable protein. Though the researchers noted a slight association between animal protein and high blood pressure, this link disappeared when they accounted for participants’ height and weight. There was no link between total protein intake and blood pressure, in contrast to previous studies.

The researchers are unsure exactly how vegetable proteins might affect blood pressure, but note from their data that amino acids may play a role. Some of these building blocks of protein have been shown to influence blood pressure, and different amino acids were present in diets high in vegetable protein than in those that contained more animal protein. Other dietary components of vegetables, such as magnesium, also may interact with amino acids to lower blood pressure.

“Our results are consistent with current recommendations that a diet high in vegetable products be part of a healthy lifestyle for prevention of high blood pressure and related chronic diseases,” the authors write. “Definitive ascertainment of a causal relationship between vegetable protein intake and blood pressure awaits further data from randomized controlled trials, especially regarding the effect of constituent amino acids on blood pressure.”(Arch Intern Med. 2006; 166:79-87. )

Editor’s Note: This study was supported by a grant from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, Bethesda, Md.; by the Chicago Health Research Foundation; by a grant from the Ministry of Education, Science, Sports, and Culture, Tokyo; and by national agencies in the People’s Republic of China and in the United Kingdom.

Friday, January 13, 2006


Super Soy!

Medical uses for soy compounds may be on the horizon

Tofu’s no longer the only answer if you’re after more soy in your diet. Today, the options have never been better. There are cereals and snack bars enriched with soy protein—or the salty taste of roasted soybeans and soy chips. Even a sweet tooth can find fulfillment with creamy, frozen deserts made from soy milk.

There’s good reason for soy’s recent surge in popularity. Despite the legume’s rather dull seed exterior, tucked inside the seed are dozens of dazzling plant chemicals that could prove to be a boon to human health. As researchers across the country are finding, some of these compounds show potential to protect the heart, halt postmenopausal bone loss, and stave off certain cancers...

More at thesoydaily.com

Thursday, January 12, 2006


Soy Improves Appearance of Skin, Hair and Nails

First Human Study Shows Soy Improves Appearance of Skin, Hair and Nails

Research now shows that consumption of soy protein, which is rich in soy antioxidants, can improve the appearance of skin, hair and nails. Soy, already recommended by doctors for its health advantages—including weight management, menopause relief, heart disease reduction and bone health support, now adds “beauty from the inside out” to its growing list of benefits.

Aging, hormonal changes and lifestyle factors such as sun exposure, smoking, poor diet and stress can adversely affect the appearance of skin complexion, induce wrinkles and cause thinning hair and brittle nails. The American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine reports that in order to help avoid these signs of aging, individuals over the age of 50 spend approximately $44 billion dollars annually to augment their looks and appear younger. In addition to smart protective steps, like using sunscreen and avoiding smoking, consuming protein and antioxidant-rich foods such as soy can have a positive impact on the health of skin, hair and nails.

The study, conducted by board-certified dermatologist Dr. Zoe Draelos, MD, confirms that soy can fight the signs of aging. Previous laboratory and topical studies have shown that soy can stimulate collagen production while preventing collagen breakdown, but this is the first study to examine soy consumption and beauty in humans. All of the 40 participants, ages 50 to 65, had mild to moderate photoaging and were not regular soy consumers. For a total of six months the women in the study consumed either one Revival® Soy shake or were part of the control group who received no dietary intervention. The study results are based on both subjective self-analysis from the individuals and thorough objective dermatologic examinations.

The results of the study were as follows:

Skin — 93% of women showed significant improvements in skin. Skin flaking and discoloration were reduced after 3 months, while reductions in skin wrinkling were seen after 6 months of daily soy consumption.

Hair — Significant improvements in hair roughness, dullness, manageability, and overall assessment were seen after 6 months of daily soy consumption.

Nails — Significance improvements in nail roughness, ridging, flaking, splitting and overall appearance were seen after only 6 months of daily soy consumption.

In addition to lotions and treatments, women can now add one Revival® Soy shake or bar into their daily diet to fight the signs of aging skin, hair and nails. Revival® Soy shakes and bars deliver 20 grams of protein and 160 milligrams of soy isoflavone antioxidants, believed to be the primary source of the beauty benefits of soy. Both products are available in a variety of flavors.

Revival® Soy (http://www.RevivalSoy.com) products are based on a proprietary soy formula, using a patented natural concentration process, developed by Aaron Tabor, MD. Revival® Soy is recommended by more doctors than any other soy protein supplement because of its high isoflavone content, high-quality protein, clinically backed research and superb taste. Just one Revival® Soy bar or shake provides the same amount of health-enhancing soy isoflavones found in 6 cups of a typical soymilk, but with up to 90% less fat. The line includes soy bars, shakes, chips, pasta, nuts and “coffee”.

Revival® Soy participates in double-blinded, placebo-controlled human clinical studies at some of America's top medical schools and hospitals. The company currently has 30 Revival® studies at various stages of design or completion. For more information or to order products, log on to www.RevivalSoy.com or call 1-800-REVIVAL.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006


How to look 10 years younger without surgery

New Zealand food writer: "Adding soy products to your diet has a number of benefits, including making the skin firm, full and youthful, as they help build and maintain collagen and elastin. I'd go for soy milk, miso and edamame (fresh green soya beans). Some people share my textural dislike for tofu, which can prevent them from including it in their diet. It may take a month before you notice a difference, though many people notice a difference in less than two weeks."
From Scotsman.com

Tuesday, January 10, 2006


Soy is good food

Not only is it healthy, you can use it in a lot of 'normal' recipes
Cincinnati Enquirer

The cookie and gravy binge is over, folks. It's time for fresh vegetables and tofu.

No groaning, now: Soy foods (tofu is just one food made from the beans) are among the current "it" foods of healthy eating. Whether you snack on very fashionable fresh edamame, or use the ever-more-clever soy products that mimic other foods, getting more soy into your diet is an essential building block of healthy eating.

Think about this:

Eating soy protein can lower cholesterol and reduce your risk of heart disease.

Women of menopausal age benefit from soy, as it seems to help alleviate hot flashes and other symptoms, as well as protect against osteoporosis and breast cancer.

Men should know there's good evidence that soy is helpful in preventing prostate cancer.

Soy researchers, including one at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, have found a link to soy preventing male pattern baldness.

If that doesn't convince you, what will?

But it doesn't mean you have to eat tofu. There are lots of "normal" foods you can make healthy by using soy products.

Amy Sigg Davis, chairwoman of the Ohio Soybean Council, grew up on a farm where Landen is now. Her father grew some of the first soybeans in Southwest Ohio, and she still grows soybeans on her land in Lebanon. She's also a home economist by training.

"About 15 years ago, I decided to introduce soy to my family," Davis says. "When I told them that, they acted like I was introducing mud pies. So I just began to substitute soy milk and soy cottage cheese and soy sour cream. I figured out how to use soy in scalloped potatoes and cheesecake. I'm just a plain cook, but I like the challenge of making things healthier by using soy products."

In fact, her advice is pretty simple: "If your recipe calls for something white and liquid, use soy milk. If it's white and squishy, use tofu."

Many soy products carry a health claim approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration: "Diets low in saturated fat and cholesterol that include 25 grams of soy protein a day may reduce the risk of heart disease. One serving of (whatever the food is) has (amount) grams of soy protein."

Twenty-five grams of soy protein is a lot.

"It is hard to do every day," says Connie Cahill, spokesperson for the Ohio Soybean Council. "I recommend starting with trying for maybe 10-15 grams. You can get that with one of the great energy bars based on soy. Or have a quarter-cup of soy nuts as your afternoon snack."

Even if you don't manage to get 25 grams in a day, using soy instead of other forms of protein will improve your overall diet.

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