ST. LOUIS, MO, May 04, 2006 (MARKET WIRE via COMTEX) -- Malaysian authorities have ruled its nation's food manufacturers can claim foods containing soy protein help reduce a person's cholesterol.
The nutrient function claim decision was announced after The Solae Company, a leading researcher and manufacturer of soy protein food ingredients, petitioned Malaysian authorities to allow a heart health claim already approved in varying specificity by seven other nations.
With the decision, food manufacturers in Malaysia may begin using the nutrient function claim on the labels of foods and beverages containing at least five grams of soy protein per serving, in conjunction with a statement explaining the amount required to reduce cholesterol in blood is 25 grams a day.
"Malaysian authorities approved this claim after thoroughly examining 46 studies collected and submitted by our company," said Greg Paul, Ph.D., director of global health and nutrition at The Solae Company. "Their decision was made based upon an enormous and still growing body of data showing the heart health benefits of soy protein. It's the weight of this scientific evidence that has led so many other countries to authorize similar claims."
High cholesterol is a leading risk factor for cardiovascular disease, which kills more than 16 million people worldwide each year and accounts for some 30 percent of all deaths. A number of studies have shown that consuming 25 grams of soy protein a day within a low fat, low cholesterol diet reduces a person's cholesterol level by approximately five percent, translating to a 10 percent reduction in a person's risk for developing heart disease.
Researchers have found other ways in which soy protein may help reduce a person's risk for cardiovascular disease. Blood clots, for example, can completely block an artery already narrowed by atherosclerosis, a condition that causes a build up of waxy plaque inside blood vessels. Research findings suggest that certain properties found in soy foods may help prevent these blockages, reducing a person's chances of heart attack or stroke. Other studies have indicated soy protein may be linked with lower blood pressure. High blood pressure can lead to stroke, heart attack, heart failure and kidney failure.
"Researchers continue to explore the positive benefits associated with soy protein, but more study is needed," said Dr. Paul. "As an industry leader, we will continue to invest in nutrition research that helps consumers make more informed decisions about what they eat."
About The Solae Company
The Solae Company is a food science and ingredient manufacturing organization, providing food and beverage manufacturers across the world with better ingredients for better living. Headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri, with regional offices in Brazil, Hong Kong and Switzerland, the company was formed through an alliance between Bunge Limited (BG) . For more information, visit www.solae.com.