Is Soy Good for PCOS? (Expert Answer)

Short Answer: Soy is good for PCOS. Because it has isoflavones and they can balance the hormones and reduce the symptoms of PCOS.

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a condition that affects your ovaries, the female reproductive organs that make eggs.

In PCOS, your body produces too much of a hormone called androgen, which can interfere with the normal development and release of eggs.

This can lead to various health problems, such as irregular periods, infertility, acne, excess hair growth, weight gain, and increased risk of diabetes and heart disease.

One of the key factors in managing PCOS is diet.

What you consume can affect your hormone levels, which can impact your PCOS symptoms and overall health.

To effectively manage PCOS, you should consume fiber-rich foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes, and avoid refined carbohydrates, added sugars, and saturated fats.

Now, soy is a product that comes from soybean, a legume that is prevalent in East Asia.

It is found in many foods including milk, tofu, and processed foods like breads and cereals.

Soy is most commonly eaten as a plant protein as it has all the amino acids that act as the building blocks of protein.

Soy is good for PCOS because it contains isoflavones, a type of plant estrogen that can have weak estrogenic or anti-estrogenic effects on the body.

Isoflavones can help balance the hormones and reduce the symptoms of PCOS, especially in postmenopausal women who have lower levels of estrogen.

Soy may also lower the risk of some cancers, such as breast and endometrial cancer, that are associated with high levels of androgen.

One cup of cooked soybeans can give you 29 grams of protein, 10 grams of fiber, 17% of your daily calcium, 49% of your daily iron, and 121% of your daily folate.

Genistein and daidzein are the two major isoflavones in soy.

Genistein can inhibit the enzyme that converts testosterone to dihydrotestosterone, a more potent form of androgen that can worsen the symptoms of PCOS.

Daidzein can bind to estrogen receptors and modulate the effects of estrogen in the body.

Furthermore, soy is a legume and legumes are good for PCOS.

Because, they are rich in fiber, protein, and antioxidants that can improve blood sugar control, lower cholesterol, and reduce inflammation.

You can eat up to 25 grams of soy protein per day safely.

More than that can cause digestive issues, such as bloating, gas, and diarrhea.

Also, you shouldn’t eat soy if you have a soy allergy or a thyroid condition to prevent adverse reactions.

Because, soy can trigger allergic symptoms, such as hives, swelling, and breathing difficulties, or interfere with thyroid function and medication.

You can buy fresh soybeans in your local market or can order them from online.

Always choose organic and non-GMO soybeans.

Because, they are free of pesticides and genetically modified organisms that can harm your health.

You can store them in a cool and dry place for up to a year.

Finally, remember, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, including a balanced diet, regular exercise, stress management and essential medical care is key to managing PCOS effectively.

I always recommend my PCOS patients to follow a PCOS-friendly diet to improve their overall well-being, and enjoy a longer and healthier life.

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About the Author

Abdur Rahman Choudhury

Abdur Rahman Choudhury is a nutritionist in West Bengal, India, with a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Biochemistry.

He has done his diploma in nutrition from Fabulous Body Inc (US), and completed various certification courses from several universities. He also has considerable research experience in PCOS.

Abdur currently lives in India and keeps fit by weight training and eating mainly home-cooked meals.

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