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Consumers Encouraged to Avoid Replacing All Meat Products With All Soy Products

by 5m Editor
2 February 2006, at 12:00am

CANADA - Farm-Scape: Episode 2050. Farm-Scape is a Wonderworks Canada production and is distributed courtesy of Manitoba Pork Council and Sask Pork

Farm-Scape, Episode 2050

In the wake of new research which casts doubt on many of the health claims associated with soy products, an Ottawa based nutrition consultant is advising consumers to avoid a wholesale switch away from animal based food products.

For a long time various claims have been made about the health benefits of soy based products but the latest research has determined there is no evidence to suggest soy will reduce the risk of heart disease, the symptoms of menopause, the risk of osteoporosis or the risk of Cancer.

Helen Bishop-MacDonald, with Nutrisphere, says, from a strictly nutritional point of view, eliminating one food from the diet and replacing it with another can be risky.

" think what we're seeing here is a massive experiment where millions of people are maybe switching to a food which is not traditional in our culture and that needs to be highlighted as well.

When you look at Asian cultures where soy has been part of their diet for centuries that is one issue but, if you parachute a food into a culture that's not habituated to it and then have it replace other foods, then you can't count on what's going to happen.

People thinking they'll substitute soy for meat for example or soy beverage for milk is unwarranted because it does not contain the same nutrients.

Having some tofu occasionally, no big deal, but I am concerned when people reject foods of animal origin and embrace soy products in their stead, they need to get guidance from a dietitian or certainly read up on it and take the appropriate supplements to replace what they've lost.

Bishop MacDonald says people need to be particularly careful of their mineral intake, especially nutrients like iron, zinc and even copper, if they are choosing to have soy products instead of foods of animal origin.

For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.

5m Editor