Remember SOY is often Genetically Modified, so ALWAYS ask for Non-GMO (or ORGANIC)! Studies are confusing because some look at soy candy bars, some look at the elements called isoflavones, and probably the majority are using genetically modified soy products of some type of other. Thus they are not comparing apples to apples, and certainly not using the type of soy foods eaten in Asia (the largest epidemiological group eating this food).
And in Japan they point out they do not JUST eat soy, but combine it with other vegetables (especially seaweeds) and in general, a low-fat diet.
Ann's Fonfa's Report on Conference Sponsored
by Johns Hopkins Department of Nursing
UPDATE: 5/01 Take a look at the Meeting Summary page for Dr. David Heber's talk. He is the Director of the UCLA Center for Human Nutrition and made some very relevant comments on SOY.
Seeking Excellence in Breast Cancer Care was the title of this conference held on September 30-October 2, 1999.
The moderator for all plenary sessions was William Dooley, MD, head of breast surgery at Johns Hopkins. (Now at a different facility, 2003)
There were the usual exhibitors'booths outside the auditorium except that there was a booth for a product called Revival. Revival is a soy supplement. I picked up the literature and here is what I found:
1)Dr. Dooley recommends this product to his patients.
2)The company has a recent abstract list for review. The front pagte states: "Over 1000 studies on soy and soy isoflavones have been published. Please contact us at 1-800-500-8053 or email@example.com if you would like more information. Our doctors are available to speak with you."
10/02 update: All Revival products are made with certified genetically-pure soybeans
(often referred to as "non-GMO"). Scientists have recently expressed safety
concerns over long-term consumption of genetically-altered foods.
"Our soy coffee is certified organic and our new line of herbs are certified
organic. We will be upgrading to organic as soon as it is scientifically
3)Issues discussed are Meno/Perimenopausal health; Breast and Endometrial tissues; Bone health; Cardiovascular disease; and Prostate health.
4)"Case-control study of phyto-oestrogens and breast cancer"(1997)D. Ingram et al, University Department of Surgery, Queen Elizabeth II Medical Centre, Perth, Western Australia: Interpretation supplied by Physician's Laboratory, makers of Revival: "There is a substantial reduction in breast cancer risk among women with a high intake (as measured by excretion) of phyto-oestrogens 1999)
5)"Urinary execretion of isoflavinoids and the risk of breast cancer" W. Zheng et al, Schoolof Public Health and Cancer Center, University of South Carolina. Conclusion: The results from this study support the hypothesis that a high intake of soy foods may reduce the risk of breast cancer.
6)"Effects of soy isoflavones on estrogen and phytoestrogen metabolism in premenopausal women." X. Xu et al, Department of Food Science and Nutrition, University of Minnesota. Conclusion: These data suggest that soy isoflavone consumption may exert cancer-preventive effects by decreasing estrogen synthesis and altering metabolism away from genotoxic metabolites toward inactive metabolites.
I am not persuaded that taking supplements of isoflavones is better or more successful than using the whole food product of soy, i.e. miso, tempeh, tofu,soy beans, soy milk, etc. However, the fact that a very mainstream medical education meeting would offer information and free samples of this product is profoundly interesting. In acknowldging that soy may be useful to women with breast cancer, a giant step forward is being taken. Apparently this product (Revival) is being marketed to hospitals and physicians. It would be really good for patients if use of phytoestrogens and natural, non-toxic products gained recognition.
Ann's NOTE: I asked the president of Physician's Laboratories about genetically modified soy beans and he told me they were negotiating to buy ONLY non-modified soy beans for their product. They would then be able to state on the label that (as far as they knew) no GM/GE foods were in their product.
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