CancerFlavonoids (Soy)

Soy food and breast cancer risk

Researchers from Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, in Nashville, Tennessee report the results from the Shanghai Women’s Health Study.

First, the details.

  • 73,223 Chinese women completed a food-frequency questionnaire to assess their diet during adulthood and adolescence.
  • They were followed for an average of 7.4 years.
  • Soy food consumption was based on soy protein or isoflavone intake.

And, the results.

  • By the end of the study there were 592 cases of breast cancer.
  • Higher soy food intake in adults was associated with a significantly lower risk of premenopausal breast cancer.
  • Higher soy food intake during adolescence was also associated with a significantly reduced risk of premenopausal breast cancer.
  • Women who consumed a high amount of soy foods consistently during adolescence and adulthood had a substantially reduced risk of breast cancer.
  • There was no significant association between soy food consumption and postmenopausal breast cancer.

The bottom line?
The authors concluded that the results provide “strong evidence of a protective effect of soy food intake against premenopausal breast cancer.”

Researchers from the National Cancer Institute, in Bethesda, Maryland believe that when it comes to soy, the benefits of high consumption may be a hormonally- (estrogen?) related effect, which ultimately influences breast cancer incidence.”

6/14/09 19:55 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.