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May 1st, 2013

Whether you have a soy allergy, dairy allergy, or just looking for healthier alternatives, soy is at the front of the dairy-free food line. But how healthy is it? And what is it? It is time to find out!

A subtropical plant, soy is part of the pea family and has been an important part of Asian diet for thousands of years. In fact it is native to southeastern Asia. It grows anywhere between one and five feet tall and grows in groups of three to five pods. It was introduced to the US in the 1800s and began to be cultivated large scale around World War II. Currently, the Midwestern US grows about half of the worlds’ supply of soy.

The high-protein seeds of the soy plant are called soybeans and they contain isoflavones, which are compounds similar to what is found in estrogen, such as genistein. Soy has been used to help high blood pressure, memory problems, menopause, osteoporosis, high cholesterol, and cancer, such as breast and prostate. Soybeans also contain a healthy dose of fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, B vitamins and the protein has all essential amino acids.

There is some research available that proves that a small, daily dose of soy can help lower LDL, which is the bad, cholesterol. However, when the American Heart Association reviewed the research, they concluded that soy does not directly impact heart health either one way or the other. And there is not much consistent research that proves that it helps anything else, although it is often used to help reduce hot flashes in menopausal women.

There are some side affects and like everything else, it varies from person to person and intensity levels. They include: minor stomach problems such as bloating or constipation and breathing problems (if you’re allergic). There is not enough evidence on the long-term use of isoflavones and how that relates to the development of endometrial hyperplasia, which is a thickening of the uterine lining and can lead to cancer.

All that being said, unless you are allergic to soy, incorporating it into a balanced diet will overall be a healthy decision, especially combined with lots of fruits and veggies and using it as an alternative to meat.

Here at Nana’s, we want everyone to lead a healthy lifestyle and we only put the best products into our cookies! Until May 13th, get 25% off our Peanut Butter cookies and the Gluten Free Ginger cookies! Just simply enter the promo code "soyfree". Go to our website at www.nanascookiecompany.com to order!

Due to the overwhelming response we got on the Nana's Next Generation Cookies, Nana's is glad to extend the sale until May 13th and offer you 50 % off with free shipping by using the promo code "nextgencookies".

References: http://nccam.nih.gov, www.mayoclinic.com, www.kidshealth.org
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