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Tofu causing health problems...

I didn't know which forum for this topic to be posted so forgive me if I need to move this question to a different area. Anyhow...

Have any of you ever encountered health problems after eating tofu? I ask because I had severe chest pain last night from 7p to 4a. Last night I dismissed it as nothing more than stress. After all, that's been my reason in the past and my anxiety and stress have been thru the roof lately. I've been to the ER and to the doctor and my heart is normal. Last night was even worse than my past panic attacks and chest pains combined. Last night I could barely breathe, I was sweating, no numbness in the arm. I know it wasn't a heart attack. 

Last night I had firm tofu, not the soft tofu I usually have. I did some Google searching and a lot of people credit these pains to stress and some do blame the tofu. Have any of you had problems with tofu? Either way, are there any good alternatives to tofu?

Try seitan as another mock meat.
I don't know if your problem is the soy or something in the tofu? Maybe you could try a small amount of tempeh and see how that goes.

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I don't eat tofu... I just cook other things that don't call for it. If you can eat gluten, try seitan.

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My boyfriend eats tofu, but he had a reaction in the past one time he drank a gallon of soy milk in one day. His throat got tight and he broke out in hives. He hasn't had problems since, but we choose to drink almond milk regularly, although he can occasionally drink soy milk with no problems. The time it happened he drank way more than usual, and he was on vacation, so it was a different brand than usual. You may want to try other brands, perhaps?

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Seitan is better anyways...skip the tofu.

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wow, that sounds awful. For an issue like that you might want to see someone who specializes in food allergies, that way you can for sure determine if tofu is the cause or if its something else. Its probably important that you try to figure out were these symptoms are coming from anyway. Chest pains really aren't something that should be brushed off.  If it is the tofu then you might want to try adapting some raw food choices, tempe , seitan and complete whole grains (w/out soy ingredients).  Maybe try consulting with a vegan nutritionist who could help you find the most balanced diet for your needs.

Feel better!

ps: chamomile tea or lavender tea might help with anxiety/stress. It generally works like a charm for me.

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I'll see if I can find some seitan. I think I've seen it at the store. If you guys say it's better, I'll try that. I've never really thought of the possibility of having a food allergy. I enjoy soy milk and soy yogurt..but this tofu left me with nothing but severe pain. I'll try some different ideas that you've all suggested. Thanks so much!

Sidenote: The day after my severe pain, I woke up with that feeling you have when you haven't eaten for way too long. Ya know..empty. Not sure if that matters for anything. Thanks again!

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Maybe it was a severe case of heartburn.

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Maybe it was a severe case of heartburn.

I thought maybe heartburn when it happened before...I also thought food allergy because I woke up in hives before. The research I've done could go either way...hives and severe chest pain can be stress but it can also be food allergy...I'm giving up tofu for a while until I get some more info together. Thanks everyone!

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I've had pretty severe reactions to unfermented soy, as well.  My throat tightens up and, if it's really bad, I'll feel the tightness in my chest, too.  This usually happens when I eat Clif bars...which is really unfortunate because they are so damn delicious.  I don't experience the same problems with tempeh.  When I made the switch from vegetarian to vegan, I naturally replaced all milk/eggs/proteinish things with soy in every form.  Bad form.  Almond milk tastes better, anyway.

I hope you're feeling better and able to figure out exactly what the issue is.  Scary stuff.

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Honestly, to me, that just sounds like a really bad panic attack. I've never heard of that kind of allergic reaction. I'd say talk to your doctor.

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Dh gets scratchy closed throat when he drinks soy milk, but it doesn't happen with tofu. He switched to ricemilk.
Are you sure it was tofu? I would try it again and see if the same thing happens. But that is just me.

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I eat tons of tofu, maybe too much. I've never had a reaction. The only way you can really find out is to try an elimination diet. It does sound like stress though, but just to be sure- are you exercising? You will feel so much better and stress free if you start.

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You stated that you've been both stressed and anxious, and so,it sounds to me as if you are simply having psychosomatic panic attacks and attributing them to the tofu. While there are cases in which people are allergic to soy, it's unlikely that you would suddenly have such a severe allergy after all this time. Fermented soy products, like tofu, can cause gas which may explain the severe chest pain. I know that after I first started eating tofu that my digestive system took some time to adjust - try eating just small amounts of it instead of making it your full meal. Additionally, taking papaya enzyme will help with digestion, especially with raw foods. 

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Sorry to hear about your problems. I've not had any adverse effects after eating soya/soy myself, but I have heard that from quite a few people. I've put cuple of links in my recent article about soya:

http://myjourneytoawakening.wordpress.com/2013/03/11/what-is-your-opinion-on-soya/

Also, it is important to recognise, that contary to popular belief, tofu is a non fermented soya product. As for alternatives - legumes (especially lentils), quinoa, chia seeds. Good luck x

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I am also do not know about tofu just cooking rice..


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I have immediate reactions to eating tofu, no matter how many times and what ways I have prepared it, ditto with cashews in which I get the same reaction.  I can tolerate tempeh and other soy products but I do need to keep them to a minimum because I am on thyroid meds and too much soy has been known to drive up my TSH.  But there is something about tofu.  I get terrible cramps and then days of bloating afterwards, and I feel very sluggish.  I love tofu but I can not handle the symptoms I get so I stay away from it.  I base my proteins on beans/legumes, grains, vegetables, and nuts and seeds (except cashews which also cause major issues for me).  I have not experienced chest pain though.

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seitan and tempheh ( i think thats how you spell it)

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