Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Is soy milk better for you?"
Is soy milk actually better for you than cow milk? I know it has less cholesterol and hormones and everything, but I've also heard that soy has hormones in it that are bad for men. Is there any hard evidence showing that it's better or worse?
In general soy milk is probably better for your overall health than cow's milk. However, the benefit of consuming soy milk over cow's milk is probably slim and does not warrant a general recommendation from most physicians. Several key studies have been conducted looking at the health benefits of soy milk. Because it contains similar amounts of protein, but less saturated fats, it most likely has benefits towards decreasing likelihood of cardiovascular disease. The last point has not been proven, just assumed from what we know about saturated fats. Despite soy milk having less cholesterol, it has not been shown to decrease bad cholesterol levels in the body by an amount that would be considered beneficial or significant. The natural hormones in both cow's and soy milk have been studied, but so far no definitive beneficial or harmful effects have firmly been established. I suggest you bring this question up with your primary care physician at your next visit. This will likely spark a fruitful conversation about how to alter your diet to improve your health. Eating more soy based products can be a component, but are not the sole answer to a healthy diet. Good luck.
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