This was a question discussed over the weekend between myself and a few female friends. We brought up the idea in a discussion over hormone replacement, irregular menstrual periods and the abundance of soy in healthy, natural and organic products.
I was curious if eating too much soy had any adverse effects on the regularity of menstrual periods or even women going through menopause. Are we exposing our bodies to too much plant derived hormones? Is this a good thing or a bad thing?
I remember that my mother had very positive results by eating soy products and drinking soy milk while she was going through the change of her life. Prior to introducing soy- her symptoms of menopause were challenging for her and those around her. As soon as she starting her soy routine the hot flashes, crazy mood swings and other symptoms subsided.
But my question revolves around those of us who are still fertile. Does soy impact or change the regularity of one's periods?
So I did a little research about what is the best limit of soy to consume each day.
How much is too much soy?
In 1991, Japanese researchers reported that consumption of as little as 30 grams or two tablespoons of soybeans per day for only one month resulted in a significant increase in thyroid-stimulating hormone, and 100 grams of soy protein, (promoted for its bone-building isoflavones and cholesterol-lowering effects) contains the estrogenic equivalent of the Pill. In vitro studies suggest that isoflavones inhibit synthesis of estradiol and other steroid hormones.
Here are the side-effects of too much soy?
•Bloating •Breast cancer (Soy isoflavones mimic estrogen) •Calcium deficiencies (soy blocks calcium absorption) •Cognitive decline (esp. in post menopausal women that have increased levels of estrogen in their blood) •Constipation •Depression •Endocrine disruption •Fatigue •Goiter Hair loss •Hot flashes •Hypothyroidism •Infertility •Irregular periods •Lethargy •Loss of muscle tone •Painful periods •Premature aging •Thyroid cancer •Thyroid disease •Thyroid Stimulating Hormone increase •Uterine cysts •Vitamin D deficiencies •Weight gain despite workouts and dieting
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the list of side effects is very interesting, but i've found that eating soy products has reversed several of the symptoms that i had previously - ie. irregular periods for years & years (i am now super-regular!!) and limiting pmt. however, i am concerned at some of the things on your list. is this just personal observation or medically backed info? email@example.com
I quit eating meat and dairy in June 2010. I was overweight and my daughter wanted to be vegan so I was trying to be supportive and thought I could loose some weight to boot. I ate lots of soy products, LOTS. Soy burgers, soy chicken, soy cheese, soy supplement bars, soy cereal, soy milk....By August I had missed a period. I thought I was pregnant- even though my tubes are tied. Went to 3 OBGYN trying to figure out what was wrong. I also have thyroid diease to begin with. I did not have not even a spot of a period till in January, since I had lost no weight at all, and my teen had lost interest, started eating meat and dairy and did away with the soy. At first I thought this may be a coinsidence, but in 2012 I started trying to add the soy back in for healthy diet reasons. It is supposed to be great for heart health, well just having Boca meat for lunch and snacking on roasted edemame for a few weeks and no period again. I wasn't eating near as much as I used to, we thought I might be pregnant again. It was awful because I have remarried and we want to have my tubes untied as my husband has no kids. He was heartbroken, when after stopping the soy my period was back the next month. I avoids soy altogether now. It may not have an effect on everyone, but for others it does. Maybe has to do with thyroid, I dont know- but yes, soy can stop your periods.