Friday, July 11, 2008

I had an odd dream that clicking a mouse gave you cancer.

Maybe my brain is trying to tell me it wants to be a farmer.

* ~ * ~ *

More proof, as if we needed it, that the hippies were evil liars and were really just trying to kill us all:

It never crossed my mind that soy - a favourite health food - might be toxic and dangerous. It wasn't the first time. Bottled water, margarine, and gluten grains all come to mind. But soy? The wonder bean?

I was faithful to the plant. I'd been a vegetarian for five years and though I now enjoy the multitude of benefits and gourmand delight that meat and seafood offer, I trusted in plants. Soy was something I'd celebrated, along with everyone else in Vancouver, in my hippie years. Later, even the men in my life enjoyed my "I Can't Believe it's Not Meat" stir fries. After moving back into the omnivore's diet that nature gave me, I still loved miso soup for breakfast and made an effort to regularly enjoy soy proteins.

When I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism many years ago, it was something of a relief, despite the fact I was not thrilled to have a chronic and serious gland problem. But even less thrilling was the depression that had always hovered around me- I'm a cheerful, festive sort of person, and the unshakeable melancholy didn't seem like me. Worse still was the unexplainable weight gain and the exhaustion and picking up every last cold and flu and Bell's Palsy, a lovely thing that damages the facial nerves and has given me the lopsided features some find sexy, and my 'sneer'. Finding a reason for this slew of complaints that forced me take medical leave from work gave me hope for a vibrant future, or at least one I could make the best of.

The doctor suggested a few ways to support my health in addition to simply popping pills. I was mildly surprised that I was told to avoid soy foods.

ooks like many of us forgot the obvious adage Mom told us: if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Think about this: who told you that Asians eat a lot of soy, that they have for thousands of years, that they eat it instead of animal protein, and that soy is why they are so healthy? Soy is monk food, and what could be kinder or healthier than a monk's vegetarian diet?

So who said all this? Your Asian family or friends? Not mine. And here's something shocking: none of it is true.

H/T to Fr. Tom.


Zach said...

Actually, my hippie food sources have been warning me about the dangers of soy (and it's MegaAgriBiz enablers) for a few years now ... so the word has gotten out, it's just not mainstream yet.

We've not made a particularly conscious effort to rid ourselves of soy ... yet. But, since we do make an attempt to eat food that's actually food, that eliminates a lot of soy processed "food" products (along with corn syrup) from our diets.

Without getting all food-preachy, we can tell the difference. Even my mother (who thinks I'm a crazy hippie) has commented that my more food-sensitive child seems like a whole different person now...

Zach said...

Some key points from your linked article that may be non-obvious to those without farming experience and who aren't food nuts:

The roots of soy are much more humble. Soybeans were used as crop fertilizer and livestock feed.

Exactly. Soy is an excellent nitrogen-fixing legume. There's a reason the standard Midwest American farm crop rotation is corn-soy (or sometimes a slightly more complex corn-soy-wheat or corn-soy-wheat-hay cycle). Corn is a heavy nitrogen feeder, and depletes the soil. Soy helps replenish it. This isn't hippie stuff -- every farmer knows this.

Knowing soy could be harmful raw, the resourceful Asians made an art out of fermenting techniques to make them digestible. Hence, miso and tempeh, the most edible forms of soy, are important arts in Asian history.

This was being written about in Whole Earth Review ten years ago, so current hippies should know all about it. :)

most soy is genetically modified

You better believe it. GM soy (Roundup Ready™) is big business for Monsanto, a company which likes to act as if it's one of the robber barons of old. Monsanto is the patent holder for both glyphosate (Roundup™) and the gene for glyphosate resistance (Roundup Ready™) -- convenient, no? And ADM is another of the agricultural monopolist EvilCorps.

Rebel against the system! Eat real food!


Anonymous said...

as my former college chaplain used to say, sooner or later science will prove that eating anything is harmful