What About Soy?

The Health Benefits of Soy

Is soy healthy?

Is soy bad for you?

This issue comes up again and again in different circles.

Vegan – yes. Paleo – No. Low Carb – yes! Keto – no.

So who’s right and who’s wrong?

Let’s get down to it.

Health Benefits of Soy

There are many health benefits of soy, but not all soy products are created equally.

FOR REFERENCEWhen I talk about soy from here on in I am taking about MINIMALLY PROCESSED SOY and FERMENTED SOY aka things like tofu, tempe, edamame and soy beans. 

Things like TVP, Soy Curls and to a greater extent, processed faux meats get a yellow light to be consumed with caution. I do not include them in my Vegan Keto Food List for Optimal Nutrition, however I do personally consume them a couple of times a week. 

soy health benefits

For those of you allergic or sensitive to soy, check out this article for tips on how to do keto without soy.

Also check out Vegan Keto Madi’s blog here, she has lots of soy free meal plans posted for you to check out!

Health Benefits of Soy - Spicy Tofu

Also, I would avoid GMO soy if at all possible. There are many dangers to consuming GMO soy including the spraying of glyphosates (aka Round Up) as well as the processing methods, including the process of using Hexane during extraction. By only consuming ORGANIC (preferable) or to a lesser extent Non-GMO soy, you avoid most of these problems.

Minimally Processed Soy



Yellow Soy Beans

Black Soy Beans

Soy Milk/Soy Yoghurt

Fermented Soy


Fermented Tofu & Soy Milk



Soy Sauce

Types to be Avoided

Any type of GMO Soy product including:

Soy Oil

Soy Flour

Soy Protein Isolate

Soy Extracts

Health Benefits of Soy


I have found there to be a heavy anti-soy bias in the low-carb/keto/paleo worlds and don’t trust their conclutions. Those of us following a vegan keto diet are kind of in a hard place, trying to navigate both worlds.

For me personally, I’d like to think we get the best of both.

Health Benefits of Soy - Tofu

But what about the fact that these doctors promote a HCLF diet?

The only article Ive ever really found on vegan keto is here. Dr Gregor describes two different studies where people following what they called an “Eco-Atkins’ Diet. One study found people following the diet experienced lower cholesterol while the other study found that whilst people following a animal based LCHF diet experienced 20% higher mortlity then the regular SAD diet, those on the plant based LCHF experienced a 20% reduction in overall mortality.

I believe its more important that we are vegan, and that alot of the benefits come from our consumption of plant foods.

The following are a list of my favourite plant based doctors and their thoughts on soy. Check them out and then see what you think.

Dr Michael Gregor

Physician/Author: How Not to Die and Founder of NutritionFacts.org


T. Colin Campbell

Biochemist/Author: The China Study, Whole and Founder of the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies

The Crucial Soy Link

Soy: The Rest of the Story

Dr Joel Fuhrmann

Physician/Author: Eat to Live & The End of Dieting

Don’t fall for the myths about Soy

Do Cruciferous Vegetables or Soy Harm the Thyroid?

Dr John McDougall


Soy: Food, Wonder Drug or Poison? 

Other Articles:

Soy: When its Good, When its Bad and How to Tell – The Globe and Mail