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Do I have to eat soy?

Hi everyone,

I've been a vegetarian for a long time, ten years or so, but have recently decided to go vegan. Before I used quite a lot of dairy in my cooking, and now that's off the table I've been trying a lot of alternatives - and I've discovered that I really don't like most soy-based products and I'm not wild about seitan, either. I have yet to try tempeh so I hope that will be more to my taste - but in general I'm not really looking for 'meat replacements' in terms of taste and texture anyway, I haven't had meat in many years and don't miss it. It just seems as though soy is a staple part of most vegans' diet, can we do well without it? 

I do love love love seeds, beans, nuts and pulses - can I just rely on those (in combination with fruit, veg, grains etc., obviously!) and steer clear of most of the soy stuff? Along with a vegan multivitamin, will they supply me with the nutrients I need?

Any advice most welcome!

Oh, no, you don't have to eat soy. Processed soy isn't good for you anyway.
I would try edamame if I were you, though, 'cause it's the best thing ever.

Just eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, take flax oil supplements (or mix a little bit of actual flax oil into your food), take spirulina, and take a multivitamin.


You don't need soy.  I know a woman who is allergic to soy, wheat and dairy.  She does fine.
I personally don't like many soy products like soy milk or soy cheese substitutes.  I use nut milk made at home.
for a thin milk (drinking, coffee/tea addition, making cakes that call for "milk") use 1 part nuts to 4 parts water in a blender on the highest setting for about a minute and then strain out the chunks (or leave them in if you don't mind)

For a thicker product, decrease the water or increase the nuts.  I accidentally made a cocoa hazelnut mousse yesterday while blending up a mix to put in coffee for a mocha treat.  I must have had too many nuts. Then when I added the cocoa, it turned into a thick mouse.  It was pretty tasty even with the nut-chunks, but I was adding it to coffee so I put in more water to thin it back to a milk.

Really, it's astoundingly easy and does not have the beany/bitter taste I sense in soy products.


Phew :) Thanks guys!

Yup, I've already discovered the joys of nut milk: almond/rice milk in my coffee and cereal, and I've been making mainly cashew-based 'cream' sauces. I also found this recipe for cashew 'cheese' spread which is simply delicious:


I'm also a big fan of almond milk... Silk's Original Almond is THE BEST!

Also, they make coconut milk and coconut "ice cream", which is GREAT! They even have a cookies and cream flavor!


Yes.  You have to eat soy.  It also helps if you know the secret soy handshake.


I hardly ever eat soy (tofu or tempeh) or seitan.  You don't need them.  Think whole foods.  Try unsweetened almond milk for the dairy replacement.


:> Humboldt, please send video demonstrating said handshake  :>

Kathryn, I'm in the Netherlands and we don't seem to have a lot of US brands, I haven't come across Silk here yet.  I've found an Italian one I really like for almond milk though, Vitariz, and I hear Germany is great for vegan products, so maybe I should take a little shopping trip across the border at some point...


germany has a lot of choices, im in denmark and we have nothing... Vitariz makes an almond milk with a rice milk base i think.

Also making mayo wtih sunflower seeds is great too. Using beans, big vegeables, nuts and seeds should be fine.
My boyfriend is not a huge fan of soya stuff, unless its junk food e.g a burger but otherwise beans are his choice.

You can look on things here for organic health shops


I agree with everyone, soy is not necessary at all. I do not eat it, because of hormonal issues. Instead I make homemade walnut milk (super easy and great source of omega 3), and eat beans for my protein.

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