What's wrong with soya?

I’ve see on the forum many people criticising soya, and soya- containing products. Also the creators seem proud to have excluded soya, which many of their competitors have not done.

Soya is simply a bean, so why the bad press and how come the creators/ forum members make such a point over being soya free?


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It’s a controversial one, soya. I used to have a lot of soya yoghurts and soya milk a few years ago. I’m still alive.

Some say it disrupts male hormones, others say it doesn’t. There seems to be a lot of information pointing both ways.

There is not a lot of information pointing both ways; the benefits are clear, and the dangers are not supported by fact.

“The UK Committee on Toxicity of Chemicals in Food, Consumer Products and the Environment conducted an in-depth analysis of soya effects on human health (COT, 2003) and acknowledged that there is no evidence that populations which regularly eat high quantities of soya, such as the Chinese and Japanese, have altered sexual development or impaired fertility. A recent overview of the effects of isoflavones on human health showed that soya isoflavones can help prevent and treat some diseases and did not confirm any of the supposed risks (Wang et al., 2013).”

Soya fact sheet.

Soya myth-busting.

Creators and forum members should not make such a point over being soya free. A hallmark of the powdered food movement is that such an approach is science-based, and not playing up to fear-mongering and misinformation.


Thanks for the info- now I won’t feel so uneasy about eating soya products :slight_smile:

Okay, perhaps I should clarify what I meant. I meant I had heard/read information both for and against. I wasn’t necessarily talking about whether there was conclusive evidence both for and against. I confess I have not studied the scientific research in depth. So perhaps I should have phrased it as “I’ve heard a lot of things both for and against.”

I said it was controversial because a lot of people seem to have strong views on either side. I’m probably somewhere hovering around the middle. I consumed soya for several years without any obvious negative effects. But I stopped eventually because I thought I had developed an intolerance to it due to over-consumption of it.

Well, many people might like to know that it is soya free. Some people do have an allergy or intolerance to soya. Seems on the same level as promoting the gluten-free version, in my opinion. If something is free from common allergens, that seems like a good selling point.

Back when I was a lurker on the Soylent forum, I seem to remember reading that digestive issues were quite commonly reported. Could be a sign of soya intolerance in those people?

It’s like how some people have digestive issue with Huel. Maybe it’s an intolerance to gluten or some other ingredient. I’m speculating though, I know.

As someone who eats bacon (I remember you saying this a while back), do you also have a problem with Huel being promoted as vegan?

Anyway, I would be interested to see what @JamesCollier has to say about soya.

Whilst factually I agree with @Ric in that soya gets a bad rap which is unjustified, part of Huel’s ethos is about being clear to customers and some customers want the info that products are soya-free.


What do you mean by; [quote=“JamesCollier, post:6, topic:2442”]
being clear to customers

Given what you have just said, saying “soya-free” seems to be misleading in the same manner that this is;

Edit; Ok, on reflection they are a little different, no products actually contain asbestos in effective quantities, but your competitors might sell products containing ‘effective’ quantities of soya. So “soya-free” is a legitimate difrentiating factor. However, it still seems about as ethical as advertising “antioxidant rich” product, which, as mentioned here, you don’t do.

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What I mean is simply: some customers like to know these things and like them presented clearly


@JamesCollier Thank you for your input. Much appreciated.

I think as a meal replacement you already get a lot of bad looks by people who reject this kind of product. So you want to attract as many people as you can if your product doesn’t need to go against their diet. So you can avoid meat, lactose, gluten, soy and whatever else, if there’s no difference, why would you? Soya is not even cheap.

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I remember hearing that soy contains phytoestrogens (plant-derived female hormones) in doses far exceeding what even the human female body needs and that that could be a huge problem. However, it seems the human body does differentiate between phytoestrogens and proper estrogens. Wiki references studies done in Asia where soy consumption is highest and the studies haven’t detected a negative effect.
Apparently soy is an allergen for some people, hence needs to be mentioned on products.
But for the general population it’s safe to consume. Soy has been consumed for thousands of years, being one of the first grains to be domesticated. Personally I don’t avoid it and would prefer it to wheat. Incidentally, Huel doesn’t contain wheat either :slight_smile:

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