my/your opinion of soybean as food

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by rhoda_bruce, Jun 26, 2010.

  1. rhoda_bruce

    rhoda_bruce Songster

    Aug 19, 2009
    Cut Off, LA
    over the years I have been cautioned by others not to over-do it on the soybean, due to the risks involved in giving too much protein to my birds.
    Thats fine, because they seem like they go for all the other grains first and save the beans for last. I figured it taste bad for them.
    I would get more corn, wheat, millet, rice and whatever I could and just a touch of soybean.
    Last time I pretty much went in equil proportions.
    Now we normally stir the grains together in a single big bin so it is pretty much mixed equally, but apparently my husband and son just dumped the grains in....first the corn, then the wheat, etc... until he had 2 sacks of soybean to put on top and it looked like it was my chickens primary food for a while.
    Well they went on a slight hunger strike for a day or 2 and it started raining, so I have a few bean sprouts coming up and they are eating them. And they started being less finicky and began accepting the beans. Well that has been going on for about 3 weeks and now it seems like my eggs have picked up and my 12 week old roosters look better and more like something I would want in a frying pan.
    Mind you that all the people who have cautioned me about soybeans have no formal education on diet therapy or animal husbandry. Anyone want to share their 2 cents worth?
    What kind of first hand experience have ya'll had with the use of soybean in your animals?

  2. j.luetkemeyer

    j.luetkemeyer Songster

    Dec 11, 2008
    The Weston Price foundation has done a lot of studies on soy and I personally do not use it at all in my feed. I feed an organic soy free feed to my birds. You can go to their website and get the information but I will try to sum it up fairly quickly. I have studied naturopathic medicine and nutrition for 15 years. I do not have a formal education in this area because I do not feel I can get a good education from the academic community. Regarding soy, one major problem with soy is the high content of phytic acid. Phytic acid blocks nutrient aborption. Most foods containing phytic acid can be fixed by cooking. Cooking normally destroys the phytic acid; however, there are a few foods in which heating does not destroy the phytic acid, soy being one of them. The only way to process the majority of phytic acid in soy is through fermentation. For this reason I do not consume any soy or any animal based food in which the animal was exposed to soy. The roasting process of soybean and/or the extrusion process of soybean meal does not destroy the phyic acid. This is one downfall of soy. Roasting/heating also changes the structure of the amino acids. One other main problem I see with soy is its high content of phytoestrogen. This plant based hormone is not processed by the bird and makes its way into the meat and eggs. There are studies that prove this. This form of estrogen is not good for human consumption. The human body can not utilize it but it tricks the body into thinking this hormone is present. This causes many health problems including breast and ovarian cancer in women, early sexual maturity in girls, and impairs the sexual maturity of boys. I would advise you to do some of your own research to better understand the issues with soy. Please do not take everything I say serious without doing your own research. This is based on my understanding and research based on sources I have come to trust as being credible. You may also look on Dr. Mercola's website. I believe he has some articles on soy as well.
  3. Neil Grassbaugh

    Neil Grassbaugh Songster

    Sep 1, 2008
  4. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Soybeans are bad for humans and chickens.

    They are EVIL I tell ya!
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2010

  5. Organics North

    Organics North Songster

    Dec 30, 2009
    Wisconsin Northwoods
    Interesting mood today Mahonri???

    Well here is my 2 cents. Yes soybeans are evil. The demise of american agriculture. .................[​IMG]

    If you are apposed to GMO's then use organic soybeans. If the beans sprout..It must mean the are raw! Raw soybeans should not be fed to poultry. Only Roasted or expelled only!

    Know organic roasted soybeans (Or any soybeans for that matter are a good vegetarian source of protein at something like 34% and are found as an ingredient in many feed mixes. I will occasion use some organic roasted soybeans in a starter mix or as a little protein boost if I do not have something I prefer more such as an animal protein.

  6. digitS'

    digitS' Songster

    Dec 12, 2007
    ID/WA border
    I believe that ON means roasted or "extruded" soybeans.

    Many raw legumes have what the nutritionists call anti-nutrients. These inhibit the digestion of other nutrients. Livestock do not get the full benefit from their feed.

    These anti-nutrients are altered by heat so cooking is used to make soybeans more useful. Extruded pellets may not go thru an actual cooking step but the extrusion process heats the meal sufficiently to change these anti-nutrients.

    I don't know enuf about all the claims and counter-claims for soybeans. Heck, when I was a kid, we didn't even know what a soybean looked like. Now, the NC Soybean Producers tell us, "American livestock - chickens, turkeys, cattle and hogs - consume about 25 million tons of soybean meal each year. No other high protein animal feed comes close."

  7. Akane

    Akane Crowing

    Jun 15, 2008
    I think small amounts of properly cooked soybeans can be a great addition to nearly all animal feed. I do not think it should make up majority of a chicken's protein and definitely not majority of any animal's feed. Chickens need more than just 4-5 ingredients to remain healthy. They also need some source of animal protein to get all the amino acids required.
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2010

  8. Organics North

    Organics North Songster

    Dec 30, 2009
    Wisconsin Northwoods
    Thanks Digits.. Yes "extruded" that is what I meant..[​IMG]

    Same in Wisconsin in the 70's and early 80's very few if any soybeans were planted in our area of the "dairy belt". Now I see them everywhere.

    Akane, I agree. As far as soybeans being a legume, legumes and grains are great to feed together. I by no means understand the synergistic relationship, but it is my understanding they are very complimentary.

    I personally choose field peas (only 24% protein, verses 34% in soybeans...but it is just me doing my part to not support the soybean industry.)

    We do have a bit of a quandary since the trend is away from animal proteins other than over harvested fish meal. (I believe it is related to BSE (Mad Cow) fears/control?)

    Soybeans do fill that niche for protein.

    (Ah.. I've got it my new conspiracy theory...[​IMG] "Monsanto Corporation created BSE, so we would have no choice but to use their soybeans as a protein source in our feeds.." [​IMG]

    (Sorry, just could not resist..)

  9. digitS'

    digitS' Songster

    Dec 12, 2007
    ID/WA border
    I think if you do not choose to feed soy to your chickens, you would have to give some real serious thought to what other high-protein feed you could use to replace it.

    Organics North has taken an alternate route - field peas, and that makes a world of sense to me. However, I live just north of the "Dry Pea Capital" and home of the "USA Dry Pea & Lentil Council, Inc." And yet, I would have to special order dry peas and probably would not be able to get pea meal or have them processed in any way [​IMG].

    Akane & ON talk about balanced amino acids that are needed by chickens. After all, egg protein isn't the same as wheat protein or sunflower protein or, soybean protein. They need that variety of sources because a laying hen has a high protein requirement. If it is just "crude" protein -- much of the nutrients in the feed will just pass thru the bird and be wasted.

    Animal protein? Sure. But, those fish sources have been "overharvested" and, I guess, fishmeal is becoming less and less available and more expensive. Feed them any type of animal protein and you are running right up against cost. I mean, it might be cheapest to feed them eggs! How much sense would that make [​IMG]?


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