I'm attempting to go a couple of weeks on a vegan diet inspired by "The Game Changers". However, everywhere I look I see most vegan recipes including soy: soy mince, soybeans, tofu, tempeh, or soy milk. Every recipe titled "high-protein vegan recipe" contains soy.
I've read multiple articles, including on this site, that state that soy protein is not good for muscle growth: estrogen by-product with high-consumption of soy counteracts testosterone benefits. A quick search shows answers that say "avoid soy altogether". Other websites say that you should limit soy protein intake to 3 - 4 servings to avoid these negative side effects and follow up saying that this shouldn't be a huge hurdle as you can easily consume your daily protein requirements (50 g) in under 3 - 4 servings.
My problem here is that I am currently consuming 180 g of protein per day in the form of whey isolate, ground beef, chicken, fish, and legumes. This has been a good number for me and I've seen a consistent strength increase. I can't see myself getting 180 g of protein without overstepping these 3 - 4 servings of soy. Three cups of soy milk is only 24 g of protein, 1.5 cups of tofu is 30 g of protein.
- Is soy protein really detrimental to strength and muscle growth in high consumption?
- Is there a version of soy that does not have negative side effects on strength and muscle growth?
- What does an increase of estrogen even look like at the gym? (i.e. is this just a marketing ploy? There's plenty of strong women out there.)
I realize this is mainly a nutrition question but I figured I would give it a shot as it relates directly to my fitness requirements. Consuming 2 kg of beans in a day seems like it just can't be sustainable.
Background and Related Fitness Information:
I began powerlifting about a year and a half ago but have only really started watching my diet within the last six months. I calculated a requirement of 180 g of protein per day from the 0.8 g to 1.2 g of protein per pound of bodyweight. I currently weigh 195 lb at a height of 6'0. Male. Canada.
My goal is to improve in the main lifts of powerlifting as well as the overhead press. The goal numbers are arbitrary and based on 250% to 100% body weight. Muscle growth is also important. I'm not focused on bodybuilding but looking good is nice.
1. Squat --> Current: 355 lb. Goal: 405 lb. 2. Bench Press --> Current: 225 lb. Goal: 315 lb. 3. Deadlift --> Current: 420 lb. Goal: 495 lb. 4. OHP --> Current: 135 lb. Goal: 225 lb.
Since starting to track my nutrition and increase protein intake I've noticed that my recovery time is much faster and it has helped push through a plateau. I'm currently following a new 12-week peaking program with a 6-8% 1RM increase in Week 12. This week's workout (week 3) looks like the following:
Monday: High Bar Squat (4x5 @ 250 lb), Walking Lunges (3x8), Single Leg Calf Raise (3x8) Tuesday: Strict OHP (4x8 @ 95 lb), Flat Dumbbell Press, One Arm Row, Face Pulls Wednesday: Rest* Thursday: Snatch Grip Deadlift (4x8 @ 270 lb), Leg Curls, Back Extensions Friday: Bench Press (4x8 @ 160 lb), Pull-ups, Seated Shoulder Press, Lat Pull Down, Dumbbell Rotations Saturday: Rest* Sunday: Rest** *or arms: bicep curls, tricep extensions, preacher curls, dips, farmer walks **or cardio: 30 minutes rowing.
Unfortunately, either my Google-fu is lacking or the internet believes "powerlifting", "vegan", and "high-protein" are oxymorons. I don't believe I can achieve my fitness goals without achieving nutrition goals as they go hand-in-hand.