Light soy milk and coffee while pregnant or preparing to conceive - Mothering Forums
Nutrition and Good Eating > Light soy milk and coffee while pregnant or preparing to conceive
Eternal_Howl's Avatar Eternal_Howl 11:30 AM 12-14-2010

Hi there,

 

I did a search in the forums for soy milk and I found one thread from 2007, but didn't find much with regard to soy and pregnancy.

 

I have light soy milk in my coffee. I don't like the taste of regular milk. If I were to drink regular milk, it would have to be light or fat-free (again, a taste thing).

 

I'm not yet pregnant, but am slowly thinking about preparing my body for pregnancy and was wondering if it's okay for a developing fetus if I continue with soy. I don't drink copious amounts of it, and if I were to eat cereal, I would have light yoghurt made from cow's milk etc (the regular stuff) instead of milk.

 

I understand soy can be an allergen. I used to drink rice milk, but soy milk is easier to find in the US (this is not my native country).

 

If it's better to switch to regular milk (I'm not intolerant to it), should I do that? The reason I moved from animal milk in the first place was concerns over the rgbh (recombinant bovine growth hormone) they feed to cows.

 

If I switched to milk, I could do organic, but It would still have to be skim or fat-free milk. Or should it be regular milk (non-organic) to try and prevent allergies when they enter this world? I don't have any food allergies.

 

Also, what about coffee? Is coffee okay to drink while pregnant? It is after all, a drug. I do like my morning coffee, but I in the evenings I can drink herbal tea, water or juice. 

 

Not pregnant, but thinking about it.

 

Thanks for your input.



littlest birds's Avatar littlest birds 12:58 PM 12-14-2010

I drank coffee once a day or less through most of one pregnancy.  I would not do so again.  I do not think it was necessarily harmful but I think it has a negative effect on the overall balance of my body even when it is decaf. 

 

I had soy milk for many years (ONLY on cereal) and know it had negative hormonal effects.  I will never drink it again.  I use real cream, personally.  My next alternative would be canned coconut milk.  My next alternatives would be rice milk, which isn't that darn hard to find around here in a small town in KY, or almond milk.  I don't think the low-fat thing matters much though I make sure to get lots of healthy fats overall.

 

Everyone is different.  There are many ladies here who think soy products are great.  I don't.  Plenty of women conceive while drinking coffee, though others avoid it because it can affect hormones or because they just want to have an optimal diet.  I've reached the point of avoiding coffee for my own health after being dependent for a long time.


JMJ's Avatar JMJ 01:51 PM 12-14-2010

I drank soy milk before and during pregnancy.  My daughter has cavities, and I believe the soy milk was one of the major factors in causing them.


Sayward's Avatar Sayward 06:03 PM 12-14-2010

How do you connect soy milk to cavities?


JMJ's Avatar JMJ 08:04 PM 12-14-2010

Soy contains a significant amount of phytic acid unless fermented.  Phytic acid binds to calcium and other minerals and inhibits absorption.  I was getting 1200-1800 mg of Calcium per day and a prenatal vitamin containing 100% of my daily value of every nutrient.  I still had signs of serious calcium deficiency during pregnancy including horrible leg cramps every night.  Something had to be inhibiting the absorption of my Calcium.  My breakfast was a big bowl of granola (homemade) and soy milk.  Of the grains, oats contains the most phytic acid, and of the beans, soy contains the most.  Most of the rest of what I ate was pretty nutrient rich, though none of my whole grains or beans were soaked, sprouted, or fermented.  Most afternoons, I had a soy milk smoothie with Calcium Magnesium Citrate with Vitamin D3 added.

 

My daughter developed cavities in two of her teeth within a couple months of erupting.  She was exclusively breastfed at the time.  It wasn't like she was eating sugar or anything.  She got those cavities based on my diet.  We have significantly slowed the growth of her cavities by making changes to her and my diet including soaking grains, beans and nuts, adding in some nutrient rich foods, and removing unfermented soy completely.  I was doing everything "right" by politically correct standards.  I had a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and dairy replacement (I was lactose intolerant before getting pregnant).  I took a high quality prenatal vitamin starting over 6 months before conception, did not eat much processed food.  The only thing that makes sense is that my breakfast was high enough in phytic acid to inhibit the absorption of enough of my minerals to make me calcium deficient, and the soy milk in my smoothies contained enough phytic acid to inhibit the absorption of the Calcium Magnesium Citrate (supposedly the easiest to absorb).

 

It's true that there could be other factors that I'm not seeing that could have been the cause, but I could not, in good conscience recommend soy milk to anybody, ever.


Graceie's Avatar Graceie 09:12 PM 12-14-2010

I would switch to decafe but other then that small amounts of soy should be ok where have you looked for rice milk its at every store her and even in montana where we lived prevoisly rice dream is organic


cristeen's Avatar cristeen 09:36 PM 12-14-2010

I'm with the pp - soy was highly detrimental to my hormone balance when I used to eat it.  Now I avoid it like the plague.  Soy is one of those foods that I absolutely do not touch.  However, if you decide to continue using soy, I highly recommend seeking out organic soy, since all non-organic soy is GMO.

 

Rice milk or almond milk should be available in any health food store in the US.  IMO, almond is a better choice, since rice milk is essentially pure sugar.  There is nothing that says you have to drink cow's milk, but if you choose to, I'd recommend searching out RBGH-free milk at the very least, if organic is not an option.

 

Fat is crucial during pregnancy and early childhood for optimum brain growth.  For most people, dairy is the easiest place to get a decent amount of dietary fat.  If you're opting for fat-free dairy/substitutes, I highly recommend paying special attention to the fat in the rest of your diet. 


Eternal_Howl's Avatar Eternal_Howl 12:58 PM 12-15-2010

Thank you everyone for your feedback. It's been great to determine safer routes. I will cut out coffee during pregnancy (when/if that happens) and probably switch to an organic (but pasteurized) variety of cow's milk.

 

From the feedback I've been given so far, it seems that full fat would be the way to go. So, if I don't like milk in a glass (on its own), would chocolate milk be a suitable substitute, along with yoghurt on cereal? Never had a low calcium issue, but I'm pretty sure that having another being feeding off you, it would tax your system (which is why I'm also getting back on my multi-vitamins).

 

Cristeen,

 

You said that fat is essential for optimum brain growth during pregnancy and early childhood. I find that kind of strange, since outside the fetus, it's sugar that feeds the brain and fat that feeds the body. I take it you mean healthy sugars such as that which occurs naturally in fruit? No pigging out M&Ms  :)


cristeen's Avatar cristeen 03:12 PM 12-15-2010


Quote:
Originally Posted by Eternal_Howl View Post
You said that fat is essential for optimum brain growth during pregnancy and early childhood. I find that kind of strange, since outside the fetus, it's sugar that feeds the brain and fat that feeds the body. I take it you mean healthy sugars such as that which occurs naturally in fruit? No pigging out M&Ms  :)

 

No, I meant fat.  I'm not talking about feeding the brain for functioning, I'm talking about the nutrients required in order for the brain to grow.  That's fat.  The brain does most of it's growing between conception and I think it's 5 yrs.  During that time, healthy fats are necessary in order to allow the brain to grow to it's full potential. 

 

And the brain doesn't need sugar for functioning, either.  It may like it, but it doesn't need it. 


Eternal_Howl's Avatar Eternal_Howl 09:04 PM 12-15-2010

Thanks for clarifying, Cristeen.


Jayray's Avatar Jayray 11:27 AM 12-16-2010

I think the brain does run off of glucose.  So you could say it doesn't need "sugar" to function, but it does need sugars that the body makes from other foods.

 

That was one of the things that freaked me out the most about the Atkin's diet.  When you cut out carbs from your diet, your brain starts to run off of ketones. 

 

FWIW, I'm pregnant and I drink low fat milk.  I try to drink a lot of milk for the calcium and protein when pregnant, and I don't really want all the extra fat.  I get fat from plenty of other places like butter, nuts, and meat.


JMJ's Avatar JMJ 01:06 PM 12-16-2010

The calcium and proteins in milk are better assimilated if the fat is there too.  It's also mostly short chain fats that raise your metabolism.  You don't avoid getting fat by avoiding dietary fat.  Your body can make it from your carbs, though it's not as good quality as the good fats you could eat.  Similarly, you don't need dietary sugar to fuel your brain.  Your body can make it from fat quite nicely.  Carbs and fat are interchangeable in a lot of ways as far as energy for functioning is concerned.  As far as repair, development, nutrient absorption, optimal functioning, etc is concerned, proper fats are much more important.


Jayray's Avatar Jayray 02:01 PM 12-16-2010

There is fat in low fat milk, just less than what's in whole milk.

 

Your body can't make glucose from fats.


JMJ's Avatar JMJ 03:48 PM 12-16-2010


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jayray View Post

There is fat in low fat milk, just less than what's in whole milk.

 

Your body can't make glucose from fats.


Sorry, I wasn't clear.  Your body can make fuel for your brain from fat.  It's called lipolysis, and it only works if you do not have high levels of insulin.  If you want to burn fat, it's sugar you need to cut, not fat, because eating sugar and experiencing the surge of insulin will prevent fat burning.

 

There is fat in low-fat milk.  There is also oxidized cholesterol from the spray drying process used in powdered milk which is in turn used in low-fat milk (source: Real Food by Nina Planck), and while no studies have linked the eating of naturally existing, unprocessed fats with health problems (except studies that have shown that toxins accumulate in fat, in which case it is the toxins, not the fat, that are the problem), oxidized cholesterol has been shown to be a factor in heart disease.


Jayray's Avatar Jayray 12:10 PM 12-17-2010

Lypolisis is the first of several steps needed to make these alternative fuels--but, like you said, it's something that only happens in diabetics and in starving people (or people creating starvation-like conditions in themselves).  Your brain can adapt to use these other molecules, but it's not what it's designed to use as its first choice. 

 

 

 

OP, my point is that I don't think it's worth stressing over.  If you don't like whole milk, don't drink it.  If you like soy milk, the 3 tablespoons you add to your coffee is in all likelihood not going to effect you or your baby at all.


Eternal_Howl's Avatar Eternal_Howl 10:36 AM 12-18-2010


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jayray View Post

Lypolisis is the first of several steps needed to make these alternative fuels--but, like you said, it's something that only happens in diabetics and in starving people (or people creating starvation-like conditions in themselves).  Your brain can adapt to use these other molecules, but it's not what it's designed to use as its first choice. 

 

 

 

OP, my point is that I don't think it's worth stressing over.  If you don't like whole milk, don't drink it.  If you like soy milk, the 3 tablespoons you add to your coffee is in all likelihood not going to effect you or your baby at all.


Well I know that in the past, people have done far worse things to their bodies while pregnant, but I guess I just want to do what I can because there is a chance I may have to stay on a medication (even on a lower dose) to ensure I can continue working through some of my pregnancy.  Not my ideal scenario, but with the economy the way it is, I may not have another option..And I know it's medications that I should be more concerned about.


Graceie's Avatar Graceie 12:59 PM 12-19-2010

I had to be on some medication well pregnant I didn't like it any many people I know didn't like it and were not shy about letting me know that in the end I made the best choice for me and my baby because I'm a mom and that's what my job is no one else has to like it I have to live with it that goes for everything food to I don't know a mom out there who ate everything perfectly following all the rule ( even the ones that contradict the other ones lol ) you just cant you will drive your self crazy i remember being on my first trimester crying over lunch meat ( organic nitrate free ) freken lunch meat or to much soy or heck not enough soy to much dairy , nut, meat , carbs , fish , or not enough do what you can with what you have make informed decisions and don't beat yourself up OK rant over soapbox.gif


Eternal_Howl's Avatar Eternal_Howl 12:40 PM 12-20-2010


Quote:
Originally Posted by Graceie View Post

I had to be on some medication well pregnant I didn't like it any many people I know didn't like it and were not shy about letting me know that in the end I made the best choice for me and my baby because I'm a mom and that's what my job is no one else has to like it I have to live with it that goes for everything food to I don't know a mom out there who ate everything perfectly following all the rule ( even the ones that contradict the other ones lol ) you just cant you will drive your self crazy i remember being on my first trimester crying over lunch meat ( organic nitrate free ) freken lunch meat or to much soy or heck not enough soy to much dairy , nut, meat , carbs , fish , or not enough do what you can with what you have make informed decisions and don't beat yourself up OK rant over soapbox.gif

At the end of the day, I guess we want to do as much as possible to make sure our unborn becomes a healthy newborn.
 


Tags: The Raw Truth About Milk , Nutrition Good Eating
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