Good for the Heart:
Heart disease is currently the leading cause of mortality in both men and women in the United States. Maintaining a heart healthy diet can have a substantial impact on this disease. Studies have shown that soy foods positively reduce LDL cholesterol. Along with soy protein, soy contains fiber and phytonutrients that help to guide the LDL cholesterol out of the body.
Other heart healthy bonuses of soy are its low saturated fat content and high polyunsaturated fat content. Soy also contains essential fatty acids from the type of oil the soybean contains and provides essential omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids. Try substituting your next meal of animal protein with soy protein as part of a heart healthy diet to reduce your risk of heart disease.
Cancer Prevention Possibilities:
Soy contains many phytonutrients that may have cancer fighting abilities. These phytonutrients include genestein and phytoestrogen which lower the risk of breast cancer and prostate cancer. Make sure to choose non-fermented soy products like tofu and soymilk for the best cancer-fighting properties.
Note: Those women who have or have had breast cancer should not eat soy products.
Other health benefits of consuming soy include lowering the risk of type 2 diabetes by helping you to maintain a healthy weight, and reducing symptoms of menopause. Studies have found that the isoflavone content of soy can help reduce hot flashes that occur during menopause.