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Ask Dr. Gourmet

If I am on Femara, should I avoid eating edamame (soybeans)?

I just had an oopher / hysterectomy done Oct 1st and was diagnosed with breast cancer in February. I had a lumpectomy and sentinel node removed, clear margins and then 6 wks radiation, completed June 6th 2010.

I read one of your articles and had another question along the same lines. My oncologist wants to put me on Femara in 3 weeks. Do you know how the edamame soybeans will react with the medication for estrogen? Can it still possibly benefit me, or do you know if it will produce more estrogen.

Dr. Gourmet Says...

A bowl of soybeans and a bowl of edamame pods

Thus far the research has not supported that there is any problem with consuming soy products and any increase in the risk of cancers.

Here are some articles to help you understand this better:

Ask Dr. Gourmet: Should a breast cancer survivor avoid edamame (soybeans) once she is post-menopausal?

Health and Nutrition Bite: Soy and Your Risk of Breast Cancer

Health and Nutrition Bite: Mediterranean Diet and Breast Cancer

Ask Dr. Gourmet: Should a woman with estrogen-receptor-positive breast cancer avoid phytoestrogens?

Thanks for writing,

Timothy S. Harlan, MD, FACP
Dr. Gourmet