Food Intolerance: Manage your Diet without Soy Products

1realistutopian By 1realistutopian, 19th Aug 2012 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Health>Diet & Nutrition

The foods we eat should nourish our bodies and minds. Living with food intolerance often has the opposite effect causing often-debilitating symptoms. Soy is one of the most abundant foods in our food supply. It is also one of the most common foods people develop an intolerance or allergy to. Here are a few hints for sufferers to manage their diets and live symptom free.

Allergy or Metabolic Intolerance

Food intolerance and allergies appear to becoming more common. Some of this increased frequency can be related to the over-reliance of processed, manufactured products that we consume. This is certainly the case with intolerance to soy products. Food allergies cause a lot of disturbance to our equilibrium, and many people do not realize their symptoms are a direct consequence of their diet.

If you find yourself feeling more tired than usual, unexplained itching or a rash, nausea and vomiting, bloated stomach, constipation, diarrhea, and even difficulty breathing; and there is no other apparent reason for these conditions, then you may have developed intolerance to soy products. For further information on symptoms of soy intolerance and allergy, see the links below. Although the list of symptoms attributed to soy intolerance is quite extensive, intolerance and allergies are rarely life-threatening, but it is bothersome nonetheless.

Most allergies and intolerance can be controlled simply by eliminating the offending product from the diet. However, this technique can be particularly problematic when we see just how much food manufacturers rely on this versatile bean.

How much Soy is in our Food Supply?

Derivatives of the soybean can be found in;
- Fast-food products (processed meat, bun, vegetable oil)
- Soy milk
- Flour (bread, bakery goods, cookies, crackers, pasta, pancakes, waffles)
- Infant formula
- Store bought pasta sauces
- Rice side dishes and gravies
- Canned goods, including soups and tuna fish
- Chocolate and candy (sweets)
- Asian cuisine
- Most store-bought salad dressings
- Chips (crisps)
- Coffee whiteners and pre-whipped toppings
- Meal replacement drinks
- Sour cream

Soy Has Many Health Benefits Too

We cannot dispute the benefits of soy protein in the diet for individuals who tolerate it well. In fact, the health benefits and resourcefulness of the soya bean, combined with a necessity to economically feed the growing global population, has encouraged the perpetual increase in harvesting. The U.S. is the largest producer of soy, and as a result, it has become a popular staple. Soy is a vital resource for vegetarians for its high protein and amino acid content. Tofu easily forms the basis of any meat-free meal; still, for some, it is not an option.

Potential Link with Thyroid Gland Function

If you do have an intolerance or allergy to soy, symptoms will occur soon after eating. The best remedy is to eliminate it altogether from your diet. The most obvious measure is to avoid fast-food restaurants.

Another growing concern relates to the effects of soy products on the thyroid gland, however, more research is needed before any definitive conclusions can be made. If a direct correlation is found, with solid research, then the lives of many will be affected. (at this time, the connection is founded on some, but not significant research…it is a hypothesis that needs further study). Those who supplement their diet with a great deal of soy products certainly need to have their thyroid hormone checked by way of a simple blood test. In addition, if a strong connection is found, it just might explain some incidences of hypothyroidism and goiters amongst individuals who do not consume meats.

How to Eliminate Soy from Your Diet

Check Product Labels. This might seem like a laborious task at first, but it soon becomes habit and you quickly find out which items you can and cannot eat. Not all ingredients list soy directly on the label, so watch out for the following additions;
- Lecithin
- Textured vegetable protein
- Monosodium glutamate
- Natural flavoring
- Hydrolyzed vegetable protein
- Glycine
- Vegetable oil
- Vitamin E
- Tempeh
- Tamari
- Tofu

There are a few things you can do to eliminate soy products from your diet. If you eat a lot of bread, you could purchase a bread machine and make your own. This bread tastes better than store bought, and has the added benefits of eliminating preservatives, and you can get creative with your recipes. Make sure the bread flour does not contain soy.

You can still eat pasta, just make sure soy fillers are not listed on the label and you can create your own sauces in just a few minutes. Try swapping vegetable oil for canola when deep frying, and use butter instead of margarine. Make home-made soups instead of canned. Actually, by eliminating many of the processed foods that we have all become accustomed to eating, you can effectively reduce the amount of soy and its derivatives at the same time, while reducing the symptoms that can ruin your whole day.

An added benefit of policing the labels is that you begin to pay attention to some of the other chemicals that we unwittingly put into our bodies, and they all have their potential consequences. Even those who do not have adverse reactions to soy could benefit from eating wise and excluding foods created in factories. Eating healthy does not have to become a thief of your precious time, not if you play smart. You can create your own convenience foods by making large batches of your favorite dishes, separate into individual portions and then freeze. This is a great way to save both time and money, simply defrost what you need for that day, reheat and voila – a tasty, nutritious, soy-free, home cooked meal.

There are plenty of home-cooking books to choose from, and thousands of websites where members can swap recipes and cook something new, some even include calorie count as well as nutrition information. Some of the most popular websites are, and, and access to the multitude of dishes are free for you to print and keep. Why not create your own menu? Don’t let your food intolerance hold you to ransom any longer, get creative in the kitchen and you will feel better soon.

Further Reading:

US Department of Health and Human Services (2010) Food Allergy: An Overview.
Food Intolerance (2011) Soy Intolerance Symptoms.


Allergen, Allergic Reaction, Allergy, Diet, Food Allergies, Soy, Soy Intolerance, Soya, Soybean, Vegetarian, Vegetarian Food, Vegetarianism

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Writing poetry, women's issues, education, about being a mom, and opinion.

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author avatar peachpurple
1st Sep 2015 (#)

it would be a pity to exclude soy products in our daily diet.

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