Nutrition

A Closer Look: Impact of Soy Infant Formula On Growth and Development

There has been a lot of discussion of late about the impact of soy infant formula (SIF) on growth and development, primarily because soyfoods, including SIF, are uniquely-rich sources of isoflavones. Experience and scientific data support the use of SIF.

Consider the following: soy infant formula has been in use for more than 50 years.  The American Academy of Pediatrics says that soy infant formula promotes normal growth and development.1 In  2014, the first systematic review and meta-analysis to focus on the safety of SIF concluded that in normal full-term infants – even during the most rapid phase of growth – SIF produces normal anthropometric growth, adequate protein status, bone mineralization and normal immune development.2 More recently, a very small Israeli study found soy infant formula use wasn’t associated with puberty onset in boys or girls.3

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Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of U.S. Soy.
Mark Messina, Ph.D.
Mark Messina, Ph.D.

Executive Director

Soy Nutrition Institute

Dr. Mark Messina is a nationally recognized expert on the health effects of soy.