3 min read
It is definitely challenging to want to give up some of your childhood favorite dishes.

Should we give up our childhood favorite tofu dishes?

What is the Difference Between Good and Bad Soy?

Like most Chinese American children, I grew up eating tofu.  I have great memories of drinking soy milk in little pouches when I visited China.  I remember feeding edamame to a relative’s dog, who loved them.  Frankly, I had no problems.  I didn’t notice any side effects until recently when I consumed some edamame in the dining hall.  I also have had some sensitivities to veggie burger patties, something I have always loved eating despite being a huge meat person.  That’s when I learned that there is a difference between good and bad soy.

Fermented Soy 

This is the good stuff that is found in small amounts in Asian diets and sold at Asian supermarkets.  Fermenting soy makes soy easier to digest and generates health-promoting probiotics.  These are products that can be enjoyed by people who are lactose intolerant.

6 Examples of Fermented Soy:

1. Tempeh

2. Miso

3. Nato

4. Chinese sweet bean sauce (used on a “Chinese Chili dish” called Zha Jiang Mian)

5. Soy sauce (make sure it is actually fermented)

6. Certain kinds of tofu (i.e. pickled)

Processed/Unfermented Soy

Unfortunately, most soy made in the United States is processed and not fermented.  In addition, soybeans naturally contain “antinutrients” which inhibit mineral production and enzyme production for digestion.  The most obvious example of processed soy is soy milk.

7 Risks that Processed Soy Carries:

1. Depressed thyroid function by inhibiting iodine metabolism

2. Contains phytoestrogens that mimick estrogen (causes risk of breast cancer, endometriosis, uterine fibroids, infertility)

3. Weight gain and headaches in women

4. Soy formula could be responsible for altered development in infants.

5. Increase candida symptoms.

6. High manganese/aluminum levels can create toxins in nervous system and kidneys.

7. MSG is often used in processed soy.


Nevertheless, this does not mean that you should not enjoy soy products at all.  Rather, make sure you eat a varied diet.  For example, if you have a salad with edamame, don’t put too much as I used to like to do  and make sure the salad has a well-rounded selection of vegetables.

Why is processed food so bad for us?

According to this article, 70% of America’s food industry is processed food.  Processed food is completely altered from the way God made our meats and vegetables and the way God designed us to eat.  I would like to compare processed food to the various man-made idols that showed up in the Bible, including the Golden Calf in Exodus.  Our society’s priorities on wealth have definitely shifted the way food is generally made.  The processed food industry is a rising industry that the Federal Drug Administration profits heavily from.  (To read my article about common food processes that are unhealthy for our diet, click here.)

My friend, Michael Taylor, has a vision called Real Food Community, which is to start a whole share buying program where more people can receive access to local, naturally grown foods at a more affordable price.  (These foods should have higher nutritional value than some of the leading whole food stores.)  We are currently looking for investors who are willing to fund this start-up.  This project will also generate new jobs for local food deliverers (particularly those currently unemployed in Cincinnati), marketers, and software developers.  For more information, contact Michael Taylor at michael@realfooddude.com or call 513-553-9868.  Read about his healing and spiritual testimony, click here.

If you are curious about the sermons at the church (Crossroads Community Church in Oakley) that Michael Taylor attends, click here.

Please keep worshipping with us at the Inbound Church.