Eating soy early protects women’s heart for life

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

New York: Do you eat soy products daily? Do not exclude them from your

diet, especially if you are a woman, for a healthy heart. The key,

however, is to begin eating soy early in life. According to new

research, lifelong soy consumption, similar to the diet of women in

Asia, produces the least atherosclerosis (hardening and narrowing of

the arteries). Switching to a Western diet after menopause, similar to

Asian migrants to North America, leads to just as much atherosclerosis

as a lifelong Western diet. "While switching to soy from a Western

diet after menopause helps only if there is not much atherosclerosis

already," researchers stressed. Researchers from Wake Forest School of

Medicine in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, did a study on female

monkeys before and after surgical menopause. They fed pre-menopausal

monkeys a diet with protein derived mainly from animal sources or a

diet with protein from soybeans. After having their ovaries removed,

mimicking human menopause, one group of monkeys continued to eat a soy

diet, another switched from animal protein to soy, a third group stuck

with animal protein, and a fourth switched from animal protein to soy.

After 34 months, cholesterol levels were good in the monkeys who ate

soy before and after menopause. For those that switched to a soy

protein diet after menopause, cholesterol levels did improve

significantly. But when it came to how much plaque progressed in the

arteries, there were not any statistically significant differences,

despite trends favouring a lifelong soy diet and the switch to soy

after menopause. "But monkeys eating a lifelong soy diet showed a much

lower proportion of complicated plaque in the arteries than other

monkeys," researchers added. "This study underscores how important it

is for women to get into the best cardiovascular shape they can before

menopause. The healthy habits they start then will carry them through

the years to come," suggested Margery Gass, executive director of the

journal of the North American Menopause Society (NAMS), that published

the research.


Kofi Oppong Kyekyeku

I am a Ghanaian Broadcast Journalist/Writer who has an interest in General News, Sports, Entertainment, Health, Lifestyle and many more.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Back to top button