Type 2 Diabetes – Is Soy a Joy for Diabetics, Their Weight and Blood Sugar Levels?

Type 2 Diabetes – Is Soy a Joy for Diabetics, Their Weight and Blood Sugar Levels? – An astonishing number of Type 2 diabetics find that soy foods are exactly what they need to bring their blood sugar levels into good control. An equally astonishing number of Type 2 diabetics insist that soy makes them feel sluggish and put on weight. Can they both be right?
What is the Best Type of Soy for Type 2 Diabetics? How people with Type 2 diabetes react to soy seems to depend a great deal on the kind of soy they eat. Highly processed forms of soy such as soy burgers and soy milk, concentrate the estrogen-like compounds in soy known as isoflavones. These compounds, which include daidzein and genistein, can lock onto the receptor sites on cells throughout your body; cells that normally respond to estrogen.
If you are a woman over 50, that might mean you have fewer hot flashes. But if you are a man over 50, that might mean you have a lower sex drive and a tendency to grow breast tissue… although consuming highly processed soy foods just once or twice a week should not be a problem. And after a certain threshold level, actually consuming lots of processed soy products in a single day does not have any additional effect either, because there is a limit to the amount of isoflavones your digestive tract can deliver in a single 24-hour period.
Soy and the Thyroid: Type 2 diabetics who also have thyroid issues, however, may want to avoid processed soy products altogether.
In the thyroid, some of the sites that ordinarily receive the thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH), which send a signal to the thyroid that it needs to be making more of the thyroid hormone for fueling the body; can also be occupied by soy isoflavones. Type 2 diabetics who have a mildly underactive thyroid can feel more sluggish and gain more weight when they consume highly processed soy.
Edamame, miso, tempeh, and soy sauce, however, do not contain concentrated isoflavones. They do not block estrogen and thyroid stimulating hormone receptor sites… and they do not cause sluggishness. And because soy foods provide protein without lots of fat, many diabetics who get high blood sugar levels after they eat carbs and meat, find they don’t get high blood sugar levels after they eat carbs and soy. Then their bodies are free to use insulin to store sugar, without having to use that amount of insulin to store fat.
Minimally processed, natural soy foods can be very helpful to people with Type 2 diabetes. To get the greatest benefit from soy, however, don’t eat it with too much fat.