My daughter has PCOS. Is soy safe?

Q: My daughter has PCOS. Is soy safe? What are the effects of soy?

A: PCOS is a condition where there are multiple cysts found on the ovaries together with other symptoms like an ovulation and menstrual abnormalities. Other symptoms can include Hirsutism, male pattern baldness, acne, and often times, obesity and insulin resistance. These women may often time have different degrees of sugar imbalance and insulin resistance. That’s why conventional medicine often uses diabetic medication as a treatment. Laboratory tests usually show higher than normal circulating amount of androgens, especially testosterone. The use of soy has a tendency to make PCOS worse because soy has estrogenic effects. There are two types of soy, however: fermented and unfermented. The unfermented kind is the problematic kind. The fermented kind, including Tempe and Miso, tends to be safer. Due to the estrogenic effect, unfermented soy will have a tendency to increase symptoms of PCOS. Those with PCOS should therefore refrain from tofu and soy products, including broccoli, cauliflower, cruciferous vegetables. These are estrogenic in nature.