21-Day Vegan Kickstart

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Forums: April 2012 Kickstart Forum: Questions about soy and iron....
Created on: 04/01/12 12:37 PM Views: 1429 Replies: 4
Questions about soy and iron....
Posted Sunday, April 1, 2012 at 12:37 PM

Hello

I am new to Kickstart. I read the book a while back but did not participate...I was just not ready. Now I am diving in feet first Surprised Two things I worry about by going plant-based. The first is soy. I have read and been watching on the news that it is not good for you, especially for your thyroid. I have hyperthyroidism, when my thyroid gives off too much hormone, and speeds everything up. I have been on meds for this for a while and it is more or less regulated, but I don't want to eat anything that could cause problems. One thing I love is my lattes. I don't mind soy milk but I don't want to switch to soy lattes if it is not good to do so.

As for iron, I am very iron-deficient...when they tested my iron levels last summer, I was at 9, and normal is about 13. I take iron supplements, but of course I want to make sure that I am getting enough iron from my food. I have read that plant iron is more difficult to absorb by the body than animal iron.

Thoughts on these?

Robin

RE: Questions about soy and iron....
Posted Sunday, April 1, 2012 at 2:14 PM

Hi Robin. I encourage you to read this factsheet: http://www.pcrm.org/health/health-topics/soy-and-your-health

In short, soy is safe.

As for hyperthyroidism, here's some information as it relates to diet:

Hyperthyroidism: Nutritional Considerations

Relationships between diet and hyperthyroidism relate to celiac disease and to excessive iodine intake. Patients with celiac disease have an increased prevalence of autoimmune disease, including Graves' disease. It is unclear whether the association is due to a common genetic basis for the two conditions or to an as-yet unidentified cause-and-effect relationship. Some have suggested that hyperthyroidism in celiac disease may relate to an autoantibody-induced stimulation of thyroid hormone output. Limited evidence indicates that antithyroid antibody production abates in celiac patients after 3 to 6 months on a gluten-free diet.

Iodine-induced hyperthyroidism has been reported in patients in remission after treatment for previous thyroid diseases. For example, euthyroid patients previously treated with antithyroid drugs for Graves' disease are prone to develop iodine-induced hyperthyroidism. Remission rates for Graves' disease after treatment with antithyroid medication may be related to excess iodine intake. However, this has not been established in controlled clinical trials.

Susan Levin, MS, RD
PCRM Director of Nutrition Education

RE: Questions about soy and iron....
Posted Sunday, April 1, 2012 at 2:18 PM

Here are the top 10 food sources of iron, according to the USDA's Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

Clams
Fortified ready-to-eat cereals
Oysters
Organ meats (liver, giblets)
Fortified instant cooked cereals
Soybeans, mature, cooked
Pumpkin and squash seed kernels
White beans, canned
Blackstrap molasses
Lentils, cooked, ½ cup

Since most meat eaters don't eat much organ meats or oysters, you may end up better off when you switch. Beef doesn't make the list until #12.

As for soy, poor soy, has become very controversial, even though millions of people in the Orient have been eating it for a very long time. They eat the actual bean, freshly made tofu, and other moderately processed foods, not components of soy isolated and concentrated to make pretend meat products. But here we are in modern times. Soy is one of the most genetically interfered with foods, along with wheat and corn. I understand that in the US, if anything is labeled Organic, it cannot be GMO (genetically modified). It may be that many people's problem with soy is the GMO aspect of it, but the science seems to be strong on both sides. If it doesn't bother you, it probably doesn't hurt you either.

I am lucky in that I don't seem to have a problem with organic soy. I buy a sack once or twice a year and make my own soymilk... cheap and dependable.

- madeline

madeline yakimchuk
Director: MEET IRENE - An Unlikely Vegan
GRYPHON media productions

www
RE: Questions about soy and iron....
Posted Sunday, April 1, 2012 at 2:34 PM

Thanks for the replies! I do have Grave's disease, but my endocrinologist never mentioned Celiac disease. Can you be tested for that? I will ask about soy, as I go in next week. I think since I have the opposite of hypothyroidism I am probably fine, and I don't eat a lot of soy products anyway.

As for iron, I read that since a plant-based diet was more acidic than a meat-based one that the iron I eat would be absorbed more readily. This makes since as I always drink my iron with orange or tomato/veggie juice due to the acid, and since I have acid reflux, that drops the acid in my stomach anyway (I am just a mess! Surprised) My sincere hope is by switching to a plant-based diet some of these issues will go away, or at least not be so troublesome.

RE: Questions about soy and iron....
Posted Sunday, April 1, 2012 at 3:24 PM

A side note, I had acid reflux which was making my life miserable. I had been vegetarian for years, but was consuming lots of processed vegetarian food, lots of fat, and lots of dairy. The vegan move made that totally disappear in a few weeks. I used to be uncomfortable every day, now I have the occassional problem if I eat something processed. Wouldn't it be neat if you got rid of that!

- madeline

madeline yakimchuk
Director: MEET IRENE - An Unlikely Vegan
GRYPHON media productions

www


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