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New Report In The Journal of Nutrition Shows Soy Is Beneficial For Heart and Bone Health
Date:3/26/2009

NORTHRIDGE, Calif., March 26 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- New findings published in the April issue of the Journal of Nutrition suggest soyfoods can play an important role in promoting heart and bone health. The new research was presented at the eighth International Soy Symposium on the role of soy in health promotion and chronic disease prevention and treatment, which was held in Tokyo, November 9-12, 2008.

"Much progress has been made in understanding the health effects of soyfoods since the first Symposium was held in 1994. Each year, the amount of research conducted on the health effects of soy and soybean components continues to impress," says Mark Messina, Ph.D., author of the report and professor of nutrition at Loma Linda University. "The 2008 Symposium in Tokyo provided an ideal venue for researchers in the field to discuss and debate study designs and outcomes. The research presented on soy and heart and bone health showed strong rationale for people to include soy in their diets."

Soy and Heart Health

At the Symposium, the most comprehensive systematic review of the cholesterol-lowering effects of soy was presented. It covered the years 1978 through the present and found that in about two-thirds of the studies judged to be of high or moderate quality, soy protein was shown to significantly reduce total and/or LDL (bad) cholesterol. The meta-analysis that was part of the review showed a net reduction in LDL cholesterol of approximately 5 percent, which is in line with other data. Over time, a 5 percent reduction in LDL cholesterol can reduce heart disease risk from 10 to 15 percent.

"Although modest compared to cholesterol-lowering drugs like statins, the cholesterol-lowering effects of soy protein are similar to those of soluble fiber and certainly relevant from a public health perspective," says Messina. "Integrating a variety of heart-healthy foods - like soy
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