Food & Diseases,  GAPS Diet & Nutrition,  Real Food

Why I am Anti-Soy

The GAPS Diet does not allow soy (because soy does not help when you are trying to heal your gut), but I was anti-soy before GAPS. Why am I so against this supposed health food? 


I highly recommend reading this book for more details:



Soy is touted as a health food, and people are eating it in place of meat. The assumption is that because Japanese people eat soy, we should too–and then we’ll be healthy!


Here are the problems with that:


  • In Ancient China and Japan it was known that soy was a poison if it was not fermented. I just confirmed this with my long-time Japanese friend, and she said to never eat soy raw, and, matter-of-factly, "it’s poison."
  •  In America, our soy products are “acid washed” or acid hydrolyzed and then labeled “Fermented.” In Japan, this label means that the soy was actually fermented for about 18 months.  This kind of fermentation breaks down the phytic acid and the estrogen in the soy beans–which are both toxic to our bodies. 
  •  In America, 90% of the soy is genetically modified and "Round up Ready."
  •  Most packaged foods contain some form of unfermented soy. “Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein” is soy (note that there was recently a recall on products containing HVP).  
  • Anybody who is eating a diet that consists of any packaged foods (bottled salad dressings, even if organic, cookies, crackers, granola bars, chips, bouillon, soups, etc.) is eating an abundance of soy!! See my article The Myth of Moderation: Soy, for more details.


Soy contains isoflavinoid phytoestrogens (read: ESTROGEN). The phytic acid in soy is a natural chelater & steals important minerals from your body. The health effects of unfermented soy are greatly numbered (all of these links are to scholarly articles and medical studies):



There are many studies that show that soy "MAY" help prevent various types of cancer. Note that these studies were done in the 1990’s or early 2000’s and were very likely paid for by GMO Soy Giant Monsanto. All of the recent studies (2010, 2011) are showing a strong connection between phytoestrogens from soy and cancer RISK.


Keep in mind that in Asian countries, soy is fermented an eaten as a condiment with *whole foods.*  They eat it often, yes, but it is fermented–and they eat large amounts of seafood, far less sugar than our country, and lots of fresh veggies. They are not consuming soy in the form of soy milk, soy bars, or hydrolyzed vegetable protein.


Lastly, please read about the Chicago inmates who were fed a high-soy diet, and the adverse health effects they faced, and the lawsuit that followed


I don’t think that health risks are only limited to *high consumption,* I believe that even small amounts of soy create health risk. For my family, we avoid it completely. You make the choice for your family. Please click on the many links above and inform yourself!


This post was shared at Vintage Healthy Home Link Up.




  • Alicia

    No soy here either! I just wish I had known about it 16 years ago when my son was switched to a soy formula…praying that there will be no ill consequences for it… Just wish I would have known then what I know now…wow would they have been fed so differently!!!

    • Brenda

      Hi Alicia,
      Thanks for commenting! I wish I had known this much sooner, too. My son was on a feeding tube as a toddler & was given canned high-calorie formulas. No doubt soy + corn syrup. 🙁 I’m so glad we know now and can make changes in our diet!!

  • Fonda LaShay

    I too wish there was more info back in the days of the dangers of soy. My mom left my Dad and I when I was just one, and according to my dad she only breastfeed me one and off for a month. I was then put on formula. Then as a child I had weight issues. When I was 10 I was put on a diet that hurt me more then helped me, my body was deprived of the nutrition it needed. When I was 15 and came off the diet I gained lots of weight, and from around 16-20 at load of soy. I too was misinformed and though it was the healthy thing to do.

    Consequently, around the time I turned 20 I started gaining lots of weight and found out I had really harmed my thyroid. Just recently though I found out that alot of it was to do with the soy. I am not avoiding soy like the plague. I am also in the process of going grain free.

    Thanks for the great blog, you have such good information here!

    • Brenda

      I’m sorry about the health issues you’ve faced! I think that the thyroid is the organ I’ve heard about the most in regards to its sensitivity to soy. It’s common now days for a woman in her 30’s to have “abnormal” lumps in her thyroid. That’s just crazy! I hope that at least SOME doctors are telling their thyroid patients to stay away from soy!
      I’m glad you’re enjoying the blog! Thank you! 🙂

  • Q.

    Ohmygosh. Thank you, thank you, a thousand times thank you for posting this. Soy is NOT healthy, but I bought into the marketing hype that it was for long time!! Tried to make myself like soy milk and used soy substitutes like Morning Star Farms veggie sausage and corndogs. I wish I had done my homework before I blindly followed the hype. I don’t touch it now!

  • deanna

    Very well written and informative post!!!
    I’ve tried to avoid soy over the years because I had heard soy was a natural estrogen and I had fibroid tumors that will grow when fed estrogen.

    Will be following you.
    Enjoyed your post!
    God bless,

    • brenda

      Thank you Deanna! Yes, there’s more and more research coming out about different kinds of tumors that are fed by estrogen. We raise soy-free, corn-free pastured chickens, and we’ve had people come to us to buy them because they already have cancer & don’t want to feed their tumors anymore.
      Thanks for the comment! Blessings!

  • Kathryn

    I was vegan for a year until I started feeling really awful and having terrible reactions in and outside my body. I had blood work done and low and behold I am allergic to soy the very thing I thought was healthier than meat! Great post, thank you!

    • brenda

      I think a lot of people are allergic or have sensitivities to soy and don’t realize it. I’m so glad you figured it out, for your health! Thanks for commenting!

  • Stacey

    Please plug in the phrase “why are people afraid of soy” in Google and read anything that doesn’t promote your viewpoint. At least one article points out that the phytoestrogens found in soy are also in coffee beans and a whole slew of other foods that the anti-soy aren’t worried about. I think your Japanese friend could hardly be considered an expert on the subject, given that she’s your friend, and is likely to share your viewpoint to begin with. I pretty much decided the whole GMO thing was bogus when my gun-nut, Republican counselor started going on and on about Monsanto and Round Up. Because those people will believe anything. So the same hype behind almost all right wing “news” is likely the same sort of nonsense behind the fear of soy and GMOs. And there’s also the notion that the anti-soy hype was started by the dairy industry, which is quite likely. The same way that they can convince everyone that their product is a necessity because they’ve financially backed all the supposed findings, and pay to put out the food pyramids. I’m not saying you’re wrong for what you believe, because neither of us has the answers. I’m saying that your viewpoint may be something you’ve been convinced of, based on “findings” of people who stand to gain financially based on the amount of people they convince. This sort of thing pays for websites, books, speaking tours. That sort of thing. You may be being lied to.

    • brenda

      Interesting point of view Stacey. I think it’s interesting that in your experience it’s been right-wing people against soy. In my experience, it’s been mostly left-wing people who are anti-soy and who tend to go with media opinion. (The media is anti-gun, anti-Trump, right? That’s democrats, not republicans…). The main point was soy, though…I personally took high school and college Japanese (5 years total). I didn’t get all of my information about soy from a Japanese friend. Or from the media…Or from the dairy industry. I read medical studies for fun, in my free-time. I spent time running a farmers market stand at our top research hospital in our state, and cancer researchers were buying all of our soy-free eggs. I suggest studying medical studies on soy rather than googling phrases about it. I respect that you might have a different view, even after researching, and that is ok.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *