Price’s estrogen was so high, in fact, that the doctors were at a loss to explain it. Whether the same effect occurs in human infants is difficult to say, but a 2001 study in the Journal of the American Medical Association surveyed over 800 adults, ages 20 to 34, who were fed either soy-based or cow’s-milk formulas during their infancy. Over the past decade, soy foods and good health have become inextricably linked in the national consciousness. Price readily agreed, grateful for the chance to spare others from his ordeal. Still, his experiences have taught him that the foods we eat are not always what we think they are. The not-so-good news: Dr. Lewi still had no clue what was causing his patient’s hormones to go haywire. A final twist in the Price case, however, shows how difficult it can be to avoid soy. Among other worrisome findings, he discovered significant shrinkage of the thymus gland, a key part of the immune system. But there's little evidence this is the case. Of course, most medicines have side effects. “He thought I was a mental case,” says Price, still angry as he recalls the experience. Even my emotions changed.”, Related: The Men’s Health Guide To Erectile Dysfunction: Everything You Need to Know to Keep Your Penis Healthy For Life. The good news: When the final test came back negative, Price was in the clear on all fronts. Dispirited and in pain, he decided to try one more doctor, this time a fellow military man. Even better, the extreme nipple tenderness began abating. Over the next few months, Dr. Lewi ran multiple tests, checking Price for cancer of the testicles, adrenal glands, chest, and lungs. Tests further revealed that estrogen levels in his bloodstream were eight times higher than the normal limits for men, higher even than the levels typically seen in healthy women. “My sexual desire disappeared,” he says. Related: 10 Myths About Erectile Dysfunction. Relate: 5 Parenting Hacks You Won’t Find In Baby Books. He stopped wearing T-shirts even on the hottest days, fearing his friends and neighbors might see the telltale bumps beneath the fabric. “Almost everything we’d learned from animal and cell-culture work indicated that estrogenlike compounds protect the brain,” she says. That’s true regardless of gender. The first three doctors Price consulted diagnosed him with gynecomastia, or the abnormal enlargement of the mammary glands in men. And because erectile dysfunction increases with age, he also suggests that men ages 40 and above limit their soy intake. Eating tofu or drinking shakes made with soy protein isolate will not cause your body to produce more estrogen (or testosterone). Men's Health participates in various affiliate marketing programs, which means we may get paid commissions on editorially chosen products purchased through our links to retailer sites. “More studies need to be conducted.”. He tried it and liked it. Symptoms caught and treated early are often reversible. During that first meeting, neither doctor nor patient had any inkling of just how long and complex this medical mystery would prove to be. Many men, to be sure, are hard pressed to explain why soy is supposed to be so healthy, but they take it on faith that they should embrace the bean. Gradually, as some contrasting information accumulates, the paradigm changes 180 degrees and you see people arguing that phytoestrogens are all bad. But the latter two, which come from animal sources, are more expensive to produce than soy. As for other men who might one day develop a similar problem, Price’s advice is unequivocal: Go to your doctor at the first sign of pain or swelling. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is taking steps to change this: It recommends that all infants who cannot be breastfed be given cow’s-milk formulas as the first preferred alternative. While acknowledging that rat results do not always directly translate to humans, the authors of the first study suggest that this time there’s reason to believe they will. Soybeans couldn’t care less about human sex characteristics—genistein and daidzein may have evolved to act as chemical defenses against fungi and grazing animals. They’ve remained in that range ever since, but the physical changes to his penis, his loss of sexual desire, and his heightened emotions have persisted. He had a commercial pilot’s license and split his time between flying and working the land. Dumbfounded, Dr. Lewi asked Price how he knew that without seeing the test results. I call it soylent green.”, He pauses a beat before adding, “I guess I’m grateful she gets me to eat it.”, Related: The Best Sources Of Protein For Men. The day Dr. Lewi asked him to stop drinking the stuff, he immediately complied. Donna cooked well-balanced meals, nothing fancy, just standard American fare. When she died, Price, then 55, was left to cope not only with his grief but a radical change in his daily routine. “In today’s supermarkets,” he says, his voice weary, “you can’t hardly get anything without at least some soy in it.”, The 60 Best Black Friday Deals to Check Out Now, My Secret to Navigating COVID-19 Mental Health, 8 Reasons to Quit Your Phone This Holiday Season, No, Vitamin C Supplements Will Not Save Us All, The Hypervolt GO Is the Mini Massage Gun You Need, This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. “The thymus,” says Cooke, “is like a finishing school for white blood cells—it’s where they go to mature.”. Top Cancer Doc Gives 5 Lifestyle Strategies to Avoid Cancer, 5 Parenting Hacks You Won’t Find In Baby Books, Workout Nutrition: What and When to Eat to Build Muscle, 5 Healthy Eating Hacks For Guys Who Hate to Cook, 8 Daily Habits That Will Keep Your Brain Young and Sharp, Response to "Is This the Most Dangerous Food for Men? The slightest touch triggered throbs. Related: Workout Nutrition: What and When to Eat to Build Muscle. Here are a few of the recent findings across the life stages of men. “My penis—I won’t say it atrophied, but it was so flaccid that it looked very small in comparison with the way it used to be. Then, several months later, and seemingly for no reason, the positive trend reversed. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at piano.io, Why Big-Time Athletes Are Selling Supplements Now, There's Only One Right Way to Defrost Chicken Fast, These 2 Bodybuilders Gave Up Sugar for a Week, How Shaq Thompson Tackles the Ball and His Days, The Truth About 'Personalized' Supplements. Yufeng Huang, M.D., a coauthor on both papers, says that the “moderate” dose used in the animal studies leads to approximately the same blood level of daidzein in men who eat soy every day, a common practice in Asia. It’s a myth that soy increases estrogen in males. A lean and wiry man, the breast development stood in stark contrast to the rest of his body. In terms of strength gains, however, he says more research is needed before he can provide definitive guidelines. “Men aren’t supposed to have breasts,” he says today in a quiet Texas drawl. Please consult a healthcare practitioner before making changes to your diet or taking supplements that may interfere with medications. Though he’d asked Price about his lifestyle and habits innumerable times, he decided to go back once again, and this time to make his questions as specific as possible. Add to this the number of studies showing that soy protein might also help protect against prostate cancer, and suddenly the stuff starts looking like powerful medicine for men. Over the next several months, blood tests revealed Price’s estrogen levels were, indeed, dropping steadily back toward normal. In terms of soy itself, Hogervorst suspects its reputation is changing. Before we get into the specifics of the research, it is worth looking at the roles the … There may be a hidden dark side to soy, one that has the power to undermine everything it means to be male. If Dr. Lewi was right, going cold turkey on soy just might begin to reverse the symptoms. With those ruled out, Dr. Lewi was left with a more dreaded suspect: an estrogen-secreting tumor. “It’s this gunk she calls superfood. He also started drinking milk, a favorite from his childhood that he figured would supply protein and other nutrients. “Soya is a complete source of protein which makes it ideal is men following a vegetarian or vegan diet,” Ludlam-Raine added. During the follow-up blood testing Price agreed to undergo, his estrogen levels continued to drop, in a virtually linear fashion, back toward normal. “Tofu’s the modern equivalent of cod liver oil,” added another buddy, Bill. “It was like my body was feminizing.”. Moderate doses of the phyto-estrogen administered either in youth or adulthood significantly affected the quality of their erections. According to annual U.S. consumer attitude surveys by the United Soybean Board, 85 percent of those polled in 2008 rated soy products as “healthy,” a significant increase from the 59 percent who in 1997 thought this was the case. And when you consume soy protein, you’re actually courting the Mr. Hyde side of two natural drugs: genistein and daidzein. Any statements made on this website have not been evaluated by the FDA and any information or products discussed are not intended to diagnose, cure, treat or prevent any disease or illness.
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