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Soy products

Australian cancer organization warns breast cancer patients to avoid soy

Tuesday, January 16, 2007 by: Jessica Fraser
Tags: soy products, GMO, phytoestrogen


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(NewsTarget) The Cancer Council of New South Wales recently announced that it will change its position on consumption of soy products in response to growing public debate over their safety, according to The Age.

Although moderate amounts of soy foods can be beneficial as part of a healthy diet -- much like fruits and vegetables -- the Cancer Council is set to release a statement urging cancer survivors and patients to use caution when consuming soy supplements or foods.

"In terms of people eating soy foods, people need to remember that it's come from a plant and eating a variety of fruit and vegetables is part of a healthy diet," said Cancer Council nutritionist Kathy Chapman. "Definitely, soy foods can be a part of it, but a diet stops being healthy when that's the only thing you're consuming, when you start consuming one particular food over another."

Chapman and the Council warned that women who currently have breast cancer, or who have survived breast cancer, should probably avoid soy products, as it could interfere with treatment or possibly stimulate growth of breast tumors.

Previous research has indicated that phytoestrogens found in soybean products can mimic the hormone estrogen in the body, which could possibly promote growth of hormone-affected cancers with long-term exposure.

"What breast cancer survivors should be concerned about is that they are often the group that are very motivated to change their diets," Chapman said. "In an extreme case, where somebody might start not having had any [soy] and then start consuming large quantities in their diet, that could be a problem."

According to consumer health advocate Mike Adams, author of "The Healing Power of Sunlight and Vitamin D," consumers should be cautious when consuming most commercial soy products.

"I am increasingly advising readers to avoid soy products for many reasons," Adams said. "Soy production farms are devastating the Amazon rainforest, and most soy sold in the United States in genetically modified. Organically raised, fermented soy products can assist in good health, but most of the soy people are consuming is processed, GM soy."

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