Quoi penser du soya? Lire sur le site d'Isabelle Huot Docteure en nutrition

Its health attributes, mainly due to its high content of isoflavones, nevertheless continue to raise controversy. What are its real effects on health?


Soy is a legume native to Asia rich in protein, fiber, unsaturated fat and minerals such as phosphorus, magnesium, iron and calcium. It is the basis of certain foods such as tofu, tempeh, miso, edamame (soybeans) and soy drinks.

Cardiovascular illnesses

Studies show that soy consumption has a modest effect on reducing bad LDL cholesterol, triglycerides and blood pressure. The benefits on heart health are mainly attributable to the fact that by consuming soy, we reduce our consumption of foods of animal origin, sources of fats harmful to the heart. On the other hand, soy contains good unsaturated fats and fiber which are beneficial to heart health.

Bone health

The effects of soy isoflavones on bone health are still being studied. On the other hand, soy foods contain high quality protein as well as a good amount of calcium which is well absorbed by the body, which contributes to good bone health.

Breast cancer

The effects of soy on breast cancer risk has been the subject of much debate. According to the latest research, the consumption of soy in the form of food is safe for women with or at risk of breast cancer and may improve the prognosis of breast cancer.

Menopause and hot flashes

Genistein, one of the isoflavones found in soy, has been shown to reduce the frequency and severity of hot flashes associated with menopause. For a satisfactory result, it is necessary to consume a minimum of 19 mg/day of genistein. To consume 19 mg of genistein, you must consume either 300 ml of soy beverage, or 150 g of tofu or 75 g of tempeh.

Male reproductive system

Isoflavones mimic the effects of estrogen, female hormones. Some therefore fear that its consumption may have harmful effects on male fertility. Studies show that consumption of up to 150 mg/day of isoflavones has no negative effect on the male reproductive system. This is equivalent to a daily consumption of 680 g of tofu, 1.5 liters of soy beverage or 150 g of protein isolate.

In conclusion, soy can occupy a place of choice in a varied and balanced diet. It can be consumed every day without danger, while avoiding excess. To get the most benefits, we prefer its whole form (edamame and dry bean) rather than its derivatives and supplements. We also favor fermented products, such as tamari sauce, tempeh and miso.

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  • Ginette

    Moi aussi j’ai très peur de consommer du soya. Je préfère m’en tenir aux recommandations récentes de ma chirurgienne.
    Vos articles sont toujours pertinents.

  • Isabelle Huot

    Bonjour Luce,
    D’abord, sachez que je comprends votre inquiétude. Il est vrai que la littérature sur le sujet est controversée. Cependant, plus elle évolue, plus les résultats semblent favorables à la consommation de soya. Cela dit, le soya est un aliment intéressant mais il n’est aucunement essentiel. Si cela vous inquiète, vous pouvez éviter d’en préparer vous même mais nul besoin de s’inquiéter d’une consommation occasionnelle, comme cela pourrait être le cas lors d’une sortie au restaurant, par exemple.

  • Luce Bastonnais


    L’information que l’on me dit sur le soya et le cancer du sein hormonodependant est qu’il n’y a pas d’étude très sérieuse sur la question et j’ai très peur que les lobbying du soja produisent des études pour nous vendre leurs produits, ayant été victime d’un tel cancer j’ai très peur de me gaver de soya. Je n’ai pas vraiment de problème de poids, j’aime beaucoup la nourriture thaï mais je fait très attention à ce qu’il n’y est pas de grande quantité de soya.

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