Soya Beans

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This pea-sized legume contains the most protein than any other member of its family. It has been grown and eaten in China for millenniums and now is accepted world-wide as a vegetarian option for high protein. Soya beans can be light yellow, black or red – all equally nutritious.


[edit] Key benefits of soya bean

Soya beans are rich in protein, calcium, iron, folic acid, isoflavones and lignans. The last two compounds are phytoestrogens and help to prevent breast and prostrate cancer, and osteoporosis. Soya protein is known to have the entire range of amino acids as found in meat protein. Thus it is an excellent source of protein for vegetarians. Every 100g of soya bean contains approximately 225 mg calcium; the content of soya drinks, however, is only 12mg/100 g, so maybe it is a better idea to have it in a solid form.

Clinical studies have shown that foods rich in soy protein can considerably improve heart health - if 25-50g of soya protein is eaten daily for a month, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL) can be reduced by 10-20 per cent (The Complete Guide to Healing Foods by Amanda Ursell). The FDA has sanctioned a health claim on food labels stating that a daily diet containing 25 grams of soy protein, also low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease.

Caution: However, soya should be eaten in moderation, along with a balanced diet, to really benefit from its properties. You should not rely on it (as with any other single food) for all your nutritional intakes. Studies have shown that an excess of soy isoflavones can effect estrogen levels in humans. It can also increase an existing (but maybe undiagnosed) thyroid problem in some people.


[edit] Soya Nutrition Facts

Soya Nutrition Facts Per 100 g
Calories 370
Protein 36g
Fat 19g
Fibre 16g
Calcium 240mg
Iron 10mg
Folate 170mg
Carbs 16g
Soluble fibre 7g
Potassium 1,730mg

[edit] Types of Soya Products

Dried soya beans Soy Milk Tofu (bean curd) Soy dairy (cheese, sour cream, cream cheese, yogurt and ice cream) Soy flour Tempeh (a fermented soya cake made in Southeast Asia) Soya sauce Miso Soy nuggets


[edit] How to cook dried soya beans

Soak 1 cup soya beans in water overnight. Rinse and pick out the bad beans. Cover with water in a deep saucepan and simmer for 2 hours; or pressure cook for 10 minutes after the first whistle.

Add the cooked beans to salads, soups, casseroles, Indian-style curries and daals, puree and make into dips, toss with a bit of olive oil, crushed garlic and herbs and have as a snack. Add your suggestions


[edit] References:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/back_to_basics/soya.shtml http://www.fda.gov/fdac/features/2000/300_soy.html http://www.ghchealth.com/june03.html

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