Soy, Estrogen and Breast Cancer

Research shows that Asian women have only 1/3-1/2 the breast cancer risk of American women, and their regular use of soy may be part of the reason.

Women with breast cancer often have tumors that are “estrogen receptive,” meaning they contain cells called estrogen receptors that grow when stimulated by estrogen.

Soy is a plant estrogen classified as a phytoestrogen.   Estrogen’s come in different strengths and behave differently.  Strong estrogens increase your risk of cancer because they tell cells to grow and divide rapidly.  Phytoestrogens and other weak estrogen’s decrease your risk of cancer because they slow down cell division.

Here’s an interesting anaolgy from CancerProject. org that explains this process

‘Think of it this way: An estrogen molecule is like a jumbo jet that attaches to the Jetway of an airport. It discharges passengers into the terminal, which is suddenly a busy, noisy place. Phytoestrogens, being weak estrogens, are like small, private planes with few passengers and no cargo, yet they still occupy the Jetway after landing. When phytoestrogens occupy the cell, normal estrogens cannot.’

Eating Soy will help these Plant estrogens bind to the cells and reduce estrogen’s effects which will in-turn reducing breast cancer risk.

Be Well,

Tammy Kohlschmidt RDH, CCT, CBP


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