Some have raised the question as to whether soy has untoward effects. Happily, these concerns have been set aside. Girls who consume soy products in adolescence have about a 30 percent reduction in breast cancer risk as adults. Women previously diagnosed with breast cancer have a significantly greater survival if they include soy in their diets, compared with women who tend not to use soy products.
However, if a person is uncertain or simply does not want to include soy, I always remind them that a vegan diet does not mean joining the Soy Promotion Society. A vegan diet can mean many things: a Latin American tradition with beans, rice and tortillas; a Mediterranean tradition emphasizing vegetables, pasta, beans and fruit. Soy products come from an Asian tradition and are entirely optional.