The Unexamined Life

Can Men Really Grow Breasts When They Eat The Impossible Burger?

The Impossible Whopper, Burger King’s alternative to the beef burgers for vegetarians, has been thrusted into the spotlight with a new conspiracy theory. 

Manufactured with the help of Impossible Foods, a leading player in the plant-based food industry, the burgers, as per the latest rumor, are said to contain harmful amounts of soya. Some men fear that soya and its products might result in their breasts growing out as much as females since they assume soya disrupts hormonal balance. 

The rumor was started by a veterinarian based in Milesville, South Dakota, whose article was published on Tri-State Livestock News. Proponents of the meat-based carnivore diet moved the conversation over to Twitter, where people like him began debating the subject, which scientists say has no evidence to claim it causes the formation of breasts. 

According to James Stangle, six glasses of soy milk provides enough dietary estrogen for men to grow boobs, much to their dismay since it could make them look effeminate. As per his theory, just eating four burgers for an extended period of time can make men grow breasts.

“That means an impossible whopper has 18 million times as much estrogen as a regular whopper. Just six glasses of soy milk per day has enough estrogen to grow boobs on a male. That’s the equivalent of eating four impossible whoppers per day. You would have to eat 880 pounds of beef from an implanted steer to equal the amount of estrogen in one birth control pill,” he stated in his article, justifying his claim.

Stangle's concern stems from the common myth that soy increases estrogen levels, perpetuated constantly by uninformed people. 

Does This Rumor Have Any Basis?

Stangle’s entire theory seems to be based on a case study of a man who developed breasts after drinking 12 cups of soy milk every day. The study conducted in 2008 was not substantiated with other correlated scientific evidence. 

Soy contains phytoestrogen, a plant estrogen of the isoflavone category. It is similar to the estrogen hormone except that it is not capable of producing such strong results. 

According to the type of soy consumed, estrogen can either be multiplied or reduced in the body. A few studies have shown that it can help reduce symptoms of menopause, as well as prevent breast cancer. All research so far seems to point to the fact that soy products are completely safe.

A review of 15 placebo controlled studies including 32 reports with 36 treatment groups were observed in people who took soy protein or isoflavones by researchers at St. Catherine University. 

Participants took soy protein supplements up to 70 grams and isoflavone supplements up to 240 mg. This consumption did not impact the testosterone levels in men, as per the study published in 2010. Therefore, disproving Stangle's theory. 

burger The Department of Agriculture recommends that people put the temperature to 160 degrees Fahrenheit when cooking ground beef to kill harmful bacteria. Pixabay