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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Soy Foods OK for Breast Cancer Survivors, Soy Supplements Researchers Still Site Caution

Soy foods contain plant estrogens and some gynos advise caution when telling their breast cancer surviving patients that they are harmless as we usually avoid systemic estrogen therapy in cancer survivors.. Caution against soy cooking for breast cancer survivors was mostly based on theory and no proof that it was safe.  A new review of the existing studies of soy consumption for breast cancer patients states that soy foods are not harmful. Some studies even do say there may be benefits for breast cancer survivors according to Bette Caan, PhD, a senior research scientist who specializes in nutritional epidemiology at the Division of Research at Kaiser Permanente Northern California in Oakland at the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) Annual Research Conference 2011 on Food, Nutrition, Physical Activity and Cancer . The American Cancer Society (ACS) according to a story reported in Medscape today " is in the process of rewording its guidelines. The old ones said that up to 3 servings of traditional soy foods per day are unlikely to be harmful. According to Dr. Caan, those guidelines may be revised to state that women with breast cancer can eat moderate amounts of soy foods. "She added 1 caveat: to avoid concentrated sources of soy, such as pills, powders, or supplements containing high amounts of isoflavones, because data are lacking on the risks and benefits. "We still need to proceed with caution," she said" in that same article. Many new articles warn about supplements in general. We also tell our patients to come in to discuss options for reducing breast cancer risk: for instance weight loss, and consideration of Evista and or Tamoxifen therapy, and discussing any hormonal therapy they may be considering. Soy foods are healthy for the heart, so if you are going to modify your soy intake there are other ways to eat heart healthy!

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