Soy and PCOS

As I have been doing more research, to better explain scientifcally why I eat the way I do, I've come across one common demoninator. Again, I'm not a scientist, so I'm understanding and reading this with a "laymans brain" I guess you could say.

The one thing I've noticed in common thread with all the things I should be trying to avoid is that they are thought to be inflammation causors. Such as Sugar, gluten, dairy, caffeine and possibly soy!

The website that I have been pouring over the last few days has some great articles. Such as this one about an Anti-Inflammatory Diet. Not a long article but you can tell by the results of the overweight-obese women with PCOS "This was a clinically relevant weight loss that is associated with a reduced prevalence of type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM2) and metabolic syndrome (MS) in the general population and improved fertility outcomes in PCOS. We achieved 63% regain of menstrual cyclicity and 12% spontaneous pregnancy rate within 12 week."

Or this study, Low Starch/Low Dairy Diet Results in Successful Treatment of Obesity and Co-Morbities Linked to PCOS "An 8-week low-starch/low-dairy diet resulted in weight loss, improved insulin sensitivity and reduced testosterone in women with PCOS."

It also appears that they are doing a ton of testing for women with PCOS,a recent study for teens with PCOS was done in 2015, as well as this one The effect of marjoram tea on the hormonal profile of women with PCOS by the British Dietic Association Ltd. also done just this year. 

There are constant studies coming out about how to control PCOS, while those of us who struggle with PCOS may never fully cured of it, I do the best I can to manage my diet. 

I also love checking out PCOS Diet Support, where Tarryn gives a good web article on what to include in your diet and what NOT to include and/or limit in your diet.

The biggest question though is soy. There seems to be a teeter totter out there on whether or not to consume it. Especially with a PCOS and/or Thyroid Dysfunction Diet.  

According to this research page (read the full article here) stating that soy is good for cardiovascular health, which with PCOS we're already at risk for, yet over on the PCOS Diva website she states an Pub Med Article on how Soy can harm your thyroid. (Although this is a dot com website, I think I can do one two better!) According to this study  Soy isoflavones interfere with thyroid hormone homeostasis in orchidectomized middle-aged rats "Decreased expression of Tg and Tpo genes (p<0.05) correlated with immunohistochemical staining results, and together with decreased serum total T4 levels, indicates decreased Tg and TH synthesis following treatments with both isoflavones. However, expression of Spot 14 (p<0.05) gene in liver and kidney was up-regulated, and liver Dio 1 expression and activity (p<0.05) increased." So, some good some bad. Helps with some things, and not with others--in laymans terms anyway.  

Soy also contains a plant derived compound of phyoestrogen. Which according to this article on found on PubMed written in 2011 "The Pros and Cons of Phyoestrogen"
"A litany of health benefits including a lowered risk of osteoporosis, heart disease, breast cancer, and menopausal symptoms, are frequently attributed to phytoestrogens but many are also considered endocrine disruptors, indicating that they have the potential to cause adverse health effects as well. Consequently, the question of whether or not phytoestrogens are beneficial or harmful to human health remains unresolved. The answer is likely complex and may depend on age, health status, and even the presence or absence of specific gut microflora"

Most notably under the cons section, take a look at number 6. While for some women it didn't affect their luteal phase, for others it notably did. The case does say the research sample was small, so more research needs to be done, but in conclusion "A 2009 meta-analysis concluded that, in pre-menopausal women, isoflavone intake increases cycle length and suppresses LH and FSH levels []. This conclusion is consistent with the clinical case report from SUNY Downstate Medical Center [] and indicates that use of soy foods should be approached with caution in women attempting to become pregnant or experiencing menstrual cycle irregularities."

For most women with PCOS we suffer greatly from cycle irregularities! I can sometimes go 3 whole months without a period, the best thing for me is avoid soy. 

For the rest of it? I've gotten MUCH better about limiting my dairy intake, as well as my gluten intake (which I'll talk about later this week). I'm still working on the sugar, as I tend to go through spruts of eating TONS of sugar or none at all. Although, I can honestly say if it's not pre-packaged I don't consume a whole lot of white sugar. Tomorrow I will talk about Insulin Resitance and PCOS. Then later this week, I'm on to discover the science behind gluten and PCOS!

Thank you for sticking through that LONG post! Now go get yourself some food!