Health Council

Topic: Health Council advice for pregnant women: Don’t eat too much soy

Pregnant women who follow a vegetarian, South Asian, or lactose intolerant diet should be careful not to eat too much soy. This is the advice of the Board of Health.

The new Health Board advice concerns a new frontier. Since soybeans are relatively high in isoflavones, it is wise to consume no more than 1 milligram per kilogram of body weight per day, according to the council.

Fertility risk

Animal studies have shown that high exposure to isoflavones can lead to changes in reproductive development, reproductive maturation, and sometimes also fertility. In France, the upper limit applies to the entire population, in the Netherlands only to pregnant women.

Should you eliminate soy from your diet now? No, the information from the Nutrition Center shows that this is not necessary. Women can still eat and drink plenty of soy products each day to stay within the limit. For example, anyone who weighs 64 kilograms can safely eat 310 grams of tofu, 230 grams of soybeans, or 610 milliliters of soy yogurt, according to the Health Council’s calculations.

However, the use of supplements containing phytoestrogens during pregnancy is not recommended. It contains a lot of isoflavones.


The Health Council, in its comprehensive advice, has a lot of information about pregnancy. An accessible version can be found in the Nutrition Center, which provides insight into all the scientific knowledge in the ZwangerHap app. I’ve received an update.

Most of the advice in it has remained unchanged for years. For example, it is not recommended to consume alcohol and eat liver. An important thing to consider is the intake of folic acid and vitamin D. “This is not new, but it appears that many pregnant women do not do this or, for example, start taking folic acid too late,” according to the Health Council. . Women are advised to start taking 400 micrograms of folic acid daily four weeks before conception and continue taking it until the tenth week of pregnancy.

Topic Discussed: Health Council advice for pregnant women: Don’t eat too much soy

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