Life Extension Magazine®

The Virtues of Whole Soy Supplements

Scientifically reviewed by: Dr. Gary Gonzalez, MD, in January 2021. Written by: Life Extension Editorial Staff.

LE Magazine Special Edition, Winter 2004/2005
The Virtues of Whole Soy Supplements

In 1997, the Life Extension Foundation introduced the first high-concentration (40%) isoflavone soy extract. The theory back then was that isoflavones, such as genistein, were the component of soy most likely responsible for its multiple health benefits.1-2

In recent years, the beneficial effects of genistein and other soy isoflavones have been shown in numerous published studies. The most prestigious study was published in Journal of the National Cancer Institute and involved 21,852 Japanese women. The findings revealed that the women with the most isoflavones in their diet had the lower risk for developing undesirable breast cell colonies.3 This confirms a myriad of published studies that revealed those who consume the most soy have much lower rates of undesirable cell colonies.4-7

At the same time, other constituents of soy have also demonstrated effects that help explain the health and longevity of Asian populations who consume a great deal of soy in their diet. One of the most impressive recent studies showed that men who ate the highest quantities of soy products were 47% less likely to develop undesirable cell colonies compared to those who consumed the lowest amounts. In men who consumed the highest amount of natto (fermented soy), the incidence of undesirable prostate cell colony formation was reduced a remarkable 75%!8

In response to increasing evidence that other constituents of soy may provide significant cell protective affects, a new formulation has been developed that provides the same standardized isoflavone extract that members have been using for the past seven years, plus fermented soy natto that may provide additional benefits.

Soy natto enhances isoflavone absorption and provides other nutrients contributed by the fermentation process.9,10 The enhanced absorption of genistein, daidzein, etc. may be significant enough that only one capsule of the new Super Absorbable Soy Isoflavones is required each day.

Just one capsule of the new
Super Absorbable Soy Isoflavones provides:
Genistein and its precursor
isoform genistin .................25.8 mg
Daidzein and its precursor
isoform daidzin .................25.0 mg
Glycitein and its precursor
isoform glycitin .................4.7 mg
Fermented soy natto
(from yeast) .................435 mg

The fermented soy natto used in this new formula incorporates a novel yeast (instead of bacteria) fermentation process. Japanese researchers have found that this type of cultured broth from yeast inhibits the development and propagation of undesirable mammary cell colonies.11

Based on studies of Japanese dietary isoflavone food consumption, just one capsule of the new Super Absorbable Soy Isoflavones provides more genistein and daidzein (50 mg) than the average Japanese person consumes in their diet.12-15 The typical American diet, on the other hand, often provides less than 1 mg of these cell-protecting isoflavones.16

Compared to the Mega Soy Extract product, the new Super Absorbable Soy Isoflavones provides a much more complete soy supplement, but does not cost any more than the Mega Soy Extract product.

Please note that Mega Soy Extract capsules (containing only isoflavones and no natto extract) are still available for those who prefer to use this particular formula.


1. Ari Babaknia, M.D., Soy, The Right Protein for Improving Your Health, Metro Digital Publishing; 2003.

2. Dietary Phytochemicals in Cancer Prevention and Treatment, Vol 401 of Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology, 1996. Ch. 7: Soy Isoflavavonoids and Cancer Prevention, 87-100.

3. Yamamoto S, Sobue T, Kobayashi M, et al. Soy, isoflavones, and breast cancer risk in Japan. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2003 Jun 18;95(12):906-13.

4. Lee HP, Gourley L, Duffy SW, et al. Dietary effects on breast cancer risk in Singapore. Lancet. 1991 May 18;337(8751):1197-200.

5. Hirose K, Tajima K, Hamajima N. A large-scale, hospital-based case control study of risk factors of breast cancers according to menopausal status. Japan J Cancer Res. 1995 Feb;86(2):146-54.

6. Setchell KD. Soy isoflavones—benefits and risks from nature’s selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs). J Am Coll Nutr. 2001 Oct;20(5):354S-362S.

7. Horn-Ross PL, John EM, Canchola AJ, et al. Phytoestrogen intake and endometrial cancer risk. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2003 Aug 6;95(15):1158-64.

8. Sonoda T, Nagata Y, Mori M, et al. A case-control study of diet and prostate cancer in Japan: possible protective effect of traditional Japanese diet. Cancer Sci. 2004 Mar;95(3):238-42.

9. Slavin JL, Karr SC, Hutchins AM, et al. Influence of soybean processing, habitual diet, and soy dose on urinary isoflavonoid excretion. Am J Clin Nutr. 1998 Dec;68(6 Suppl):1492S-1495S.

10. Hutchins AM, Slavin JL, Lampe JW. Urinary isoflavonoid phytoestrogen and lignan excretion after consumption of fermented and unfermented soy products. J Am Diet Assoc. 1995 May;95(5):545-51.

11. Gotoh T, Yamada K, Ito A, et al. Chemoprevention of N-nitroso-N-methylurea-induced rat mammary cancer by miso and tamoxifen, alone and in combination. Jpn J Cancer Res. 1998 May;89(5):487-95.

12. Arai Y, Uehara M, Sato Y, et al. Comparison of isoflavones among dietary intake, plasma concentration and urinary excretion for accurate estimation of phytoestrogen intake. J Epidemiol. 2000 Mar;10(2):127-35.

13. Wakai K, Egami I, Kato K, et al. Dietary intake and sources of isoflavones among Japanese. Nutr Cancer. 1999;33(2):139-45.

14. Kimira M, Arai Y, Shimoi K, et al. Japanese intake of flavonoids and isoflavonoids from foods. J Epidemiol. 1998 Aug;8(3):168-75.

15. Wu AH, Yu MC, Tseng CC, et al. Plasma isoflavone levels versus self-reported soy isoflavone levels in Asian-American women in Los Angeles County. Carcinogenesis. 2004 Jan;25(1):77-81. Epub 2003 Oct 10.

16. de Kleijn MJ, van der Schouw YT, Wilson PW, et al. Intake of dietary phytoestrogens is low in postmenopausal women in the United States: the Framingham study(1-4). J Nutr. 2001 Jun;131(6):1826-32.