Soy VS Soy Lecithin

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They both contain the word, “soy” so you would think they are quite similar, but are they?

I have a sensitivity to soy lecithin, but I have no problem eating soy products. How come? What is the difference between soy and soy lecithin?

My sensitivities consists of canola oil aka rapeseed oil and soy lecithin, so what is common between the two? They are both made from the rapeseed plant or atleast have rapeseed in it. So, technically I am sensitive to rapeseed, which is why soy lecithin bothers me, but soy does not.

Soy is made from soybeans, but does not contain rapeseed. Soy lecithin is also made from soybeans, but has such a small amount of soy protein that it most likely does not cause a reaction to those with a soy allergy. In fact, when I spoke to my allergist, he said that soy lecithin is usually okay for soy allergies, so it doesn’t cause concern, although in my case, it’s not safe to consume.

For me as a chocoholic; absolute chocolate lover, finding out that I’m sensitive to soy lecithin, an emulsifier in chocolates, I was completely heartbroken. But, because of soy allergies I found allergy-friendly chocolates like chocolate from Enjoy Life Foods that do not contain soy lecithin, so luckily for me, I can still enjoy chocolate and satisfy my chocolate cravings.

When I tell people, especially restaurants that I’m sensitive to soy lecithin, they make the misconception that I can’t have soy, which is not the case. In fact, I actually get excited when I find out that a restaurant uses soybean oil instead of canola oil. Why? Because that means that I can now eat the fries because they are using another oil other than the one I’m sensitive to, but when I say I can’t have soy lecithin and they eliminate soy products, then I miss out on enjoying fries cooked in soybean oil because they think that is a bad thing. Having an uncommon sensitivity, especally one to soy lecithin where people aren’t as familiar with it and think I have a soy allergy, it can be quite challenging and harder to explain and make sure they understand.

What even is soy lecithin anyways? I never heard of it before my sensitivities. I know it has traces of soybeans, also has rapeseed in it , and is used as an emulsifier in most breads and chocolates, but what does it even look like? I have never seen it before and have never used it while baking. Of course, I’ve never made chocolate, but I have made bread and have never used it. What is this mystery substance that my body thinks is poison?

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