This article comes from Dr. Axe, and for my regulars, you know the answer already. But for those newbies who have been around for only a short time, you might be wondering what the best choice is. Well, the simple verdict is NO Soy! We are Whey all the Way, and specifically, grass fed, non-denatured, four ingredient whey protein (ours doesn’t have the negatives that he comments about below).
There are reasons, and Dr. Axe talks about them. But I wanted to touch on the GMO crop really quickly. Monsanto has developed a seed that is Genetically Modified for SOY, which has become the seed of choice worldwide. In a couple weeks, I will be in Upstate New York visiting my family (my annual reunion trip). When I am there, my wife and I will spend two days in the Finger Lakes Region, which is pretty fantastic.
There are wineries everywhere in this region, and beautiful views, awesome glacier cut lakes (no man made dams). So we’ll be driving my dad’s Miata around up there (beats the minivan) with the top down, enjoying the breathtaking views of Soy. Yep. Soy. There are endless fields of soy, with little corporate names in front of these fields, all representing seed manufacturers who are owned by….. Monsanto.
Who is Monsanto? The Evil one. Now according to this image from a blog online, they own everybody, but according to The Examiner, the list is misleading.
From Dr. Axe’s web site (FULL ARTICLE):
The Importance of Protein
The word Protein comes from a Greek word meaning first priority or of first importance. The Greeks were highly concerned with their physical health and appearance and knew the vital importance of protein in the diet. Protein is essential to rebuilding cells and tissues, keeping fluids in balance, protecting enzyme functions, supporting nerve and muscle contraction as well as supporting the health of skin, hair and nails!
As more people today are becoming aware of the importance of protein in the diet and concerned with their physique, protein supplementation is becoming more and more popular, even for non-athletes.
One of the most popular protein supplements today is whey. According to a recent study published in the British Journal of Nutrition, whey protein is a great way to increase muscle strength. Recently I’ve written about the benefits of whey protein supplementation, but I want to take it a step further and compare the pro’s and con’s of two very popular protein supplements; whey and soy protein supplements. I’ll also share the protein source I personally use. Let’s get started with whey protein.
Whey Protein 101
Whey proteins are globular proteins derived as a by product of cheese production. It ‘s one of two types of proteins found in milk; whey and casein proteins. There are three types of whey protein. These are the following:
Concentrates – containing low level of fat and cholesterol, higher levels of bioactive compounds in the form of lactose. This is the best and least processed form.
Isolates – the fat has been removed, lower in bio-activated compounds with a mild to milky taste and proteins can be denatured.
Hydro-isolates – with these the cost is higher, and they are less allergenic than the other forms of whey. However, this is by far the most processed and proteins have been denatured. I do not recommend this form of whey.
Whey protein is highly digestible and used in a number of common grocery store products.
Whey Protein is Found in:
- Meal replacement products
Benefits of Whey Protein
Whey protein is one of the most popular proteins used by athletes and bodybuilders alike for its muscle enhancing effects. It is theorized to help not only build muscle and enhance body composition but also to speed the recovery of broken down and stressed muscles (as occurs from exercise). This is attributed to the leucine found in whey protein.
In the study mentioned earlier by the British Journal of Nutrition, whey protein was found to contain “active components that are superior to amino acids for stimulating muscle protein synthesis and initiating translation.”
But these aren’t the only benefits of whey protein. In addition, numerous recent studies point to added health benefits of whey. Some of these include the following:
- Appetite suppression
- Anti-oxidant properties to fight free radical damage
- Preventing inherited allergies
- Reduced risk of heart disease, cancer and diabetes
Side Effects of Whey
As with most supplements, there are certain side effects from whey protein. Some of these side effects include gas, bloating, cramps, tiredness, fatigue, headaches and irritability. Many of these side effects are blamed on the consumer of whey being lactose intolerant or from the added artificial sweeteners found in some whey protein powders. (Below I’ll explain what you MUST look for and what to avoid when buying a protein powder.)
There are a number of benefits to using a whey protein supplement and studies continue to mount supporting the above mentioned benefits of whey protein. Now let’s discuss soy protein supplementation.
Soy Protein 101
Soy protein is derived from the soybean that has been dehulled and defatted. These dehulled and defatted soybeans are then processed into three forms:
- Soy flour
- Soy concentrates
- Soy isolates
Soy protein has many uses and was not originally used as a food product but for paper coatings used as a pigment binder. Today, soy is used in many foods and other products as well.
Soy Protein is Found in:
- Salad Dressings
- Beverage Powders
- Frozen Deserts
- Infant Formulas
- Breakfast Cereals
- Pet Foods
For a time, there were a number of health claims about soy protein. Some of these claims stated that soy protein consumption helped lower bad cholesterol, prevented heart disease and even fought off some cancers. However, more recent studies have indicated that many of these health claims are not only false but that there are serious concerns with concentrated soy protein consumption.
Health Concerns with Soy Protein
These concerns have to do with the phytoestrogens found in soy proteins, especially the concentrated soy proteins. Phytoestrogens mimic estrogen. The concern with this is that many people today are becoming estrogen dominated and this can be potentially hazardous to our health. Much of this estrogen dominance has been attributed to plastics that contain a form of estrogen that when heated and undergo extreme temperatures leach into the foods and beverages held in the plastics. When we consume the foods we consume the plastics. High levels of estrogen have been associated with increased risk of certain cancers in both men and women.
This is my concern with adding more estrogen to the diet and with using soy supplements.