View Full Version : Is it possible to be allergic to soy but not tofu?

Apr 9th, 2013, 10:24 PM
Hi all,

Well... I've always liked Soy sauce since childhood (have it occasionally), and I quite like Tofu, but not very often. Both seem not to cause me any issues, and I don't drink soy milk (tastes yuck - I prefer rice milk)...

However, it seems (I'm not sure yet) that a pattern has emerged when I eat the "realeat chicken style pieces" which are made from soy protein concentrate and isolate, and not fermented. They do contain wheat but I've been tested for celiac and have no problems with wheat at any other time.

Three times now, I've had EXTREMELY painful (I mean REALLY BAD) abdo/bowel pain and terrible, ahem, diarrhoea. Tonight it started within 15 minutes of eating this item, and I think I remember it happening after eating them recently (although I wasn't looking for a pattern at the time). It was awful. I mean SERIOUS pain. :(:(:(

But it never seems to happen with Tofu, so am I possibly looking at the wrong culprit? Or is it possible due to the difference in production?

Yours wincingly,
Pea xxxxxxxxxx

Apr 9th, 2013, 11:54 PM
Poor you. Anything with TVP tends to gives me indigestion, but tofu is fine. Don't think it's an allergic reaction in my case, just can't digest the stuff.

Apr 10th, 2013, 12:19 AM
I am the opposite. I can not handle tofu, as much as I love it. Every single time, I get bad painful cramps, gas, and bloating, even if it is mixed in with a gazillion other ingredients, and worse when by itself. I have no problems with tempeh, and very occasionally I use soymilk for baking as it works better for some things than my usual almond milk. Soy sauce I use on rare occasion and it does not bother me either. I have not tried tvp. I have to keep my soy intake down due to thyroid issues but as far as GI issues only tofu bothers me. Strange...

Apr 10th, 2013, 02:18 AM
You might find your answer here: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/food-allergy/AN01109

The only way to know for sure is to check with your doctor. There may be a test you can have done if you are really worried about it. Or you can avoid eating stuff you know you have a bad reaction to.

Apr 10th, 2013, 07:47 AM
Thanks all... I'm pretty certain now that it is an allergy rather than a food intolerance, esp. as I have eczema, asthma, and hayfever, and am allergic to cats, perfumes, and three different kinds of medicines! :(

I woke up this morning to very loud rumbling and - ewwww - squelching noises coming from my abdomen, feeling sick and then had to go to the toilet. It's still making noises even now as I type!

I'm certain it's not a bug, as no-one else has got it, and we haven't really been anywhere for a couple of days...

I'm sure it was my dinner that caused it, and even though I said it started within 15 mins, that was the really bad pain, it actually started within just a few minutes and I remember now that I actually didn't eat as much of it as usual, as my head sort of "told" me there was something bad about it (I can't explain that very well - I just sort of had an instinct it wasn't a good idea to carry on so I left the rest even though I was hungry)...

Apparently that's one of the signs it was an allergic reaction rather than just intolerance - the speed of the symptoms coming on.

Robin, isn't that strange? It must be something to do with the way it's processed... Although apparently this type of soy is 5 times denser than tofu in terms of how much actual soy is in there.

Well, off to the docs I go.

Apr 10th, 2013, 10:19 AM
Okay, GP said he thought it was a sensitivity rather than an allergy as I didn't get respiratory problems or any kind of rash. He also said that yes, different types are more of a problem for others.

Of course, advice was to avoid it (which I had already decided to do anyway).

Apr 10th, 2013, 10:43 AM
Glad you went and had it checked out! I think if it were an allergy it would have to be to all soy? IDK. I forgot to mention I also get a strange tingly burning sensation in my mouth eating tofu. I also have bad reactions to cashews but tried substituting recipes that call for raw cashews with blanched almonds and I do not have the same reaction, even though both are nuts. I think it is entirely possible to have intolerances to different types of the same family of foods. I just avoid cashews and tofu now, though at times it gets frustrating trying to find alternative ingredients when a recipe calls for tofu (and cashews seem to be a popular alternative...sighs.)