Soybeans are awesome, why? Allow me to elaborate on the joy of soy.
Soy comes from soybeans which are mostly found in Asia and are part of the legume’s family. Where is Soya come from? An interesting fact is that evidence indicates that soybeans were grown and used for consumption in China since 9000 BCE! Furthermore, soy has a lot of health benefits you might not know yet.
I assume you already know the most famous benefit of soy, which is the high levels of protein, more specifically plant-based protein. And I must say, who doesn’t like product who are stuffed with the goodness of protein!?
Also, soybeans and the countless foods made from soybeans are a huge part of vegan diets. Vegans do not eat any animal-based foods, which rules out a lot of protein rich products. Vegans often struggle with getting the right amount of protein into their diet, soybeans are one of the best solutions for this problem.
Soy for menopause. Soy for women. Soy and estrogen.
Besides the protein, soybeans also contain a substance called ‘Phytoestrogens’, which are basically a weaker, plant-based version of the hormone oestrogen.
Phytoestrogens may relieve some menopausal symptoms because it could act like a hormone replacement therapy. Unfortunately, there is not enough research done and its effectiveness can vary between 1,9% and 45%. Also, this research was first initiated because Asian women experience lighter hot flushes during their menopause compared to western women from America. A big difference between them was their diets. Asian women often have a soy-rich diet compared to the westerns with meat-rich diets.
Soy isoflavones benefits
Soybeans also may have a positive effect on Coronary heart disease. Coronary heart disease is caused by cholesterol deposits which turn into plaque, this plaque sticks on the walls of arteries and stops the blood flow to the heart. Roughly, 20 grams to 65 grams of soy protein can reduce the total cholesterol levels in your blood which in effect could reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.
Soybeans are also awesome because they are high in fiber, low in saturated fat, lactose free and a great source of omega-3 fatty acids. Overall a very healthy food which you should incorporate into your diet.
Types of food containing Soya
Here is a top 3 of my favourite foods which include soy protein.
Tofu is awesome because it is a nutrient dense food. Which means it is low in calories but high in nutrients. It contains a lot of protein, essential amino acids, some health fats and minerals such as manganese, calcium, iron and more. In other words, it contains 8 grams of protein per 100 grams, 5 grams of fat per 100 grams, 2 grams of carbs and all that only contains 70 kcal per 100 grams.
To be honest I have never eaten Miso myself, but it is an essential ingredient in Japanese dishes and is said to have a nice umami flavour. It is made from fermented soybeans and has a paste texture. Miso is not as nutrient dense as Tofu, it contains 199 kcal per 100 grams but is packed with 12 grams of protein! It contains 2 grams more fat than tofu and is very high in Carbs, 26 grams per 100 grams.
Furthermore, it is high in Iron, Magnesium and Vitamin B6.
Last but definitely not least, is my favourite soybean product, Tempeh! It is a traditional food from Indonesian and can be prepared in different ways. You can find grilled tempeh and fried tempeh. Both delicious! Tempeh is also amazing because its packed with 19 grams of protein per 100 grams! Unfortunately, tempeh is higher in fats, namely, 11 grams per 100 grams. Depending on your goals and diet you should consider if tempeh is the right food for you.
Soy powder supplements. Which is the best one?
Besides these foods, another simple and great way of getting soy protein is through supplements. Which Soy powder is the best one? Which Soy supplement to choose?
I strongly suggest you try Soya Pro by Activlab, this is an amazing supplement to get soy protein as a vegan or vegetarian. Soya Pro helps building muscle, digests and absorbs quickly and has an excellent amino acid profile!
Soy isoflavones effects on fertility.
Before you go crazy on the soy protein, you should know, there is also a downside on eating too much soy protein. Recent research shows that consuming too much soy protein could affect female fertility and the development of fetuses and children.
For adults its recommended to consume about 15-25 grams of soy protein per day. This could also be 2 – 4 servings of protein per day, with one serving being a half a cup of tofu or 1 cup of soy milk.
Have I convinced you to start implementing soybeans and soy protein or did you already consume soy products? Let me know what your favourite soy product is!
And don’t forget, let us know what you want to read about next on this blog!
Written by Sven Nicholson | Online Personal Trainer @ www.healthychanges-pt.com