The Benefits of Fermented Soy Products for Breast Cancer

Although standard soy products are not recommended for those with breast cancer, fermented soy products are not only safe for those with breast cancer, but contain potent breast cancer fighting properties as well.

Research has proven that fermented soy products have the highest levels of cancer-fighting nutrients.

This is because the phytic acid, which is inherent in soy beans, has been neutralized in the process of fermentation. Consuming fermented soy is very beneficial in recolonizing the friendly bacteria in the large intestine, which neutralizes the ‘unfriendly’ bacteria and allows for greater general assimilation of foods and nutrients.

  • Fermented soy products are known to contain high concentrations of the isoflavone, genistein, and other compounds that exhibit anticancer activity in preclinical models.
  • Fermentation breaks down the isoflavones to smaller molecules, produces isoflavone metabolites, and makes them more bioavailable.

The Asian cultures that have traditionally consumed soy typically ferment it first. This process breaks soy down and makes it easier to digest. Plus, fermentation adds extra nutrients and probiotics (“good” bacteria) to soy.

The Okinawans are the world’s longest-lived people, probably in part because of their diet. For more than 5 millennia, they’ve eaten whole, organic and fermented soy foods like miso, tempeh, tofu, soy milk, and edamame (young soybeans in the pod).

Miso, a fermented or probiotic form of soybean, is particularly rich in the isoflavone aglycones, genistein and daidzein, which are believed to be cancer chemo preventatives. The fermentation process is thought to convert the isoflavone precursors genistin and daidzin to their active anti-cancer isoflavone forms, genistein and daidzein

Recently in the news, miso was linked to a substantial decrease in the risk of breast cancer among Japanese women.  Soy foods contain isoflavones, but could not be linked, by themselves, with breast cancer risk reduction. The main difference between miso soup and other soy foods consumed by the Japanese is the fermentation process.

In Asia, the traditional fermented soy foods are considered to have more health promoting benefits when consumed in moderate amounts than the super-processed soy products that are consumed in the West.

For example, a study of the culturing method involved in the production of the Japanese traditional food miso came to the conclusion that the culturing process itself led to a “lower number of cancers per animal” and a “lower growth rate of cancer compared to controls.” The researchers also indicated that it was not the presence of any specific nutrient that was cultured along with the soybean paste but rather the cultured soy medium itself that was responsible for the health benefits associated with miso consumption. Miso, a fermented or probiotic form of soybean, is particularly rich in the isoflavone aglycones, genistein and daidzein, which are believed to be cancer chemo preventatives.

The limited epidemiological evidence so far from these cultures with diets that are high in fermented soy products indicates that such diets may reduce the risk of breast, colon, lung and stomach cancers, as well as offer some protection from cardiovascular diseases.


Dr. John Lee, author of several books on the health of women, recommended that women wishing to consume soy production eat only miso, tempeh, natto. Tofu can also be eaten provided it is accompanied by fish or some other protein source and some seaweed or kelp to replenish bound minerals. Eating small amounts of these foods will provide the cancer protective effects of genistein without causing the other potential problems of genistein. Dr. Lee recommended avoiding genistein and isoflavone supplements, and soy protein isolates.

In conclusion:

In order to derive some benefit from soy, consume only fermented soy products – such as organic miso (mugi barley and genmai miso are the best), organic tempeh, soy sauce or tamari and natto – is the way to do it.

A highly recommended fermented soy beverage product is Haelan 951 – A Revolutionary New Type Of Soy Drink That Could Offer Vital Protection Against Breast Cancer.

A number of fermented soy extracts are sold as nutritional supplements. Perhaps the most popular of these in the cancer world is Haelan 951. According to the manufacturer, “Haelan’s (patented) fermentation process hydrolyzes many of the soy bean proteins into amino acids and compounds that are rich in nitrogen and fermentation metabolites of the naturally occurring isoflavones such as genistein, protease inhibitors, saponins, phytosterols, and inositol hexaphosphate (IP-6) compounds in soy beans.” It is described as “an excellent source of pre-digested soy proteins”. It is a thick, beige, bitter-tasting liquid.

Pilot studies on tumor cells and subsequently on a group of patients with breast, ovarian, or prostate carcinoma demonstrated a positive influence of Haelan 951 in terms of reduced tumor growth and significant improvement of the patients’ general condition. Dr. Doris Bachg’s working group at Gemeinschaftspraxis fur Laboratoriumsmedizin, Recklinghausen, Germany, was able to demonstrate on a genetic level that Haelan 951 enhances the expression of P21, which leads to a stop of the cell cycle and thus suppresses cancer growth in prostate, ovarian, and breast cancer patients alike. P21 is located at a prominent position in the cell cycle and is activated by P53.

Haelan 951 consists of many components, the number of which has been significantly increased via the special type of fermentation when compared to an untreated simple soy extract. In mixtures of so many soy components, it is always unclear which of the many soy constituents is responsible for an observed effect: is it one component or a facultative effect of several substances, or does the mixture only work indirectly by triggering a type of placebo effect at some place in the metabolism (metabolome) via a comparatively insignificant substance? Clinical trials and research on Haelan are ongoing.

Cancer patient histories with Haelan 951 fermented soy use were evaluated by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) as part of their “Best Case Series.” NCI graded several of the reported cases (breast and liver cancers) as being “persuasive” cases. “Persuasive” is the highest NCI rating for a  breast cancer treatment’s effectiveness.

Click here to learn more about Haelan 951.

Note: The concentration of isoflavones and amino acids in this product make it taste quite bitter. To make it taste more palatable , you can add an herbal sweetener named Stevia, which should be available at most health food stores. Stevia is approved by the FDA in the US and by Health Canada in Canada. Stevia is a plant native to South America and is now grown and cultivated throughout the world. Depending on the brand, stevia is usually about 4 times sweeter than sugar.



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