15 January 2013

Much has been written regarding the role of soy and breast cancer, but much confusion remains. While research in this area is active, here is what we know:

Soy is an isoflavone, a class of chemical that has weak estrogen-like activity.  We know that women in Asian countries, following a traditional diet, have a lower incidence of breast cancer than women in the US. Their diet consists of large quantities of soy foods starting at a young age. However they eat soy in a natural form – they do not eat “foods” such as soy hot dogs or take soy in supplement form. Research has shown that consuming large quantities of natural soy products starting at a young age seems to confer some estrogen resistance to the breast tissue, which may account for the lower incidence of breast cancer in the Asian population.

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8 November 2012

I had the honor to collaborate on this ASCO Connection post with Dr. Don S. Dizon, a medical oncologist at the Massachusetts General Hospital specializing in women’s cancers.  This post grew out of twitter and email conversations  – we were discussing cancer prevention, risk reduction, and cure – and how our conversations and thoughts have changed due in part from our interactions with patients in the  BCSM Community and other social media sites.

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