Group touts findings showing soy's health benefits

American Soybean Association
Farm Forum

ST. LOUIS, Mo. — The release of the U.S. government’s “Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2020-2025,” on Feb. 19 reaffirms the role of U.S. soy in human diets, the American Soybean Association said in a news release. As a globally-respected, science-based reference, the report recognizes soy in core elements of healthy dietary patterns.

ASA’s World Initiative for Soy in Human Health Program offers training on these health benefits with entrepreneurs and organizations in emerging and developing countries that produce nutritious foods and feeds containing soy that contribute to improved health and economic opportunities. WISHH connects trade and development across global market systems, improving food security.

The U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services issued the 164-page report. It stresses, “The foods and beverages that people consume have a profound impact on their health.” The dietary guidelines are designed for policymakers and nutrition and health professionals to help all individuals and their families consume a healthy, nutritionally adequate diet. This edition of the dietary guidelines highlights the importance of encouraging healthy dietary patterns at every life stage from infancy through older adulthood.

Soy’s potential to contribute to a healthy dietary pattern includes:

  • Protein foods, including lean meats, poultry, and eggs; seafood; beans, peas, and lentils; and nuts, seeds, and soy products.
  • Soy-fortified beverages and yogurts.
  • Oils, including vegetable oils.

“When U.S. soybean growers founded WISHH 20 years ago, they recognized the important role that U.S. soy could take in meeting the nutritional needs of the world’s fastest-growing populations in developing and emerging economies,” said Kentucky soybean grower Gerry Hayden, who serves as ASA/WISHH chairman as well as on the ASA board, in the release.

“WISHH is currently working with strategic partners in 20 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America who are making more protein available through soyfoods, breads, beverages as well as fish, eggs, and meat.”

Knowing that protein plays an essential role in human nutrition, visionary U.S. soybean growers founded WISHH in 2000 to serve as a catalyst in emerging markets. WISHH brings the power of strategic partnerships to our unique market-systems approach. Local business leaders, governmental and non-governmental organizations, as well as academic institutions join WISHH in increasing demand and fueling economic growth for the sustained availability of nutritious and affordable human foods and livestock feeds.

U.S. soybean growers David Droste of Illinois and Morey Hill of Iowa meet with a WISHH partner tofu company in January 2020.