Soybean, also known as soya bean, has many uses. Native to East Asia, the legume species is known as a vital and cheap protein source for animal feeds, as well as for packaged meals. Some soybean products like texture vegetable protein or TVP also serve as ingredients in various meat and dairy alternatives. Examples of soybean derivatives are tempeh, natto, fermented bean paste, tofu, and soy sauce. Along with these, the following are the health benefits of soybeans.

Protein Source

According to BBC Good Food, soya’s key benefit is its high protein content, in addition to insoluble fiber, vitamins, and minerals. As per the publication, a 100-gram serving of soya beans has 17g protein, 10g carbohydrates, one gram saturated fat, 173kcal, and 6g fiber. While soya has a different processing as compared to animal proteins, its protein content is still viewed as equal to that of animal food sources. In addition, soya has an extra advantage to animal sources, as it can reduce blood cholesterol levels than the latter.

Phytoestrogens and Fertility

Soyabeans are rich in natural substances called phytoestrogens. According to Viva Health, phytoestrogens are less potent form of estrogen and they are found in various fruits and vegetables and in food sources like wholegrains, peas, and dried beans. As per the publication, these substances are believed to be 100 to 100,000 times weaker than the estrogen hormones in the human body.

In women, phytoestrogens can decrease high estrogen levels by attaching to estrogen receptors and blocking the connection from the stronger estrogen. On the other hand, when the body’s estrogen is low, the weak aspect of these substances can mildly boost the body’s estrogen. This way, soya can relieve the menopausal symptoms in older women.

In terms of research, studies aimed to determine the effects of soya-based formula on sexual development and fertility. Study findings revealed that there was no evidence of adverse effects on either sexual development or reproductive health. In addition, the researchers found that there was no basis for concern when it comes to the effects of soya isoflavones on male hormones and reproductive functions.

Cardiac Health

Soya contribute to heart health. According to Clear Spring, soya can reduce blood cholesterol levels; thus, it can decrease the risk of having heart ailments. As per the publication, research suggests that soya’s isoflavones reduce low-density lipoproteins or bad cholesterol; however, there was no effect on the high-density lipoproteins or the good cholesterol. Moreover, it was revealed that soya could considerably improve a person’s blood lipid profile; thus, decreasing the risk of cardiovascular conditions like atherosclerosis, coronary heart disease, and stroke.

As per Soy Connection, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) officially recognized soy protein’s ability to reduce cholesterol in 1999, along with a health claim that intake of 25 grams of soy protein per day may decrease the risk of having heart disease. In addition, it was said that most soy foods contain low saturated and trans fats, making it as a contributor to an overall heart-healthy diet.

Sample Recipe

Soya Kebab is a soya recipe that can be an alternative to meat, as its meaty texture qualifies to a person’s taste buds, according to Food NDTV. As per the publication, the ingredients include two cups soya granules, water, two tablespoons vinegar, four bread slices (crumbled), a tablespoon of salt, two teaspoon garlic paste, half teaspoon powdered black pepper, one-fourth cup of chopped onions, two teaspoons of hari mirch, a teaspoon of chili powder, and oil.

To prepare, all ingredients are mixed except the garnish ingredients and the oil. Then, the mixture is shaped into flat grounds and then refrigerated for an hour or more. After that, a thin layer of oil is heated in a frying pan. Once done, the shaped rounds are browned over medium heat. After that, the kebab is garnished with onion rings, lemon wedges, and chutney.

Overall, soy beans provide several health benefits to the body. Thus, it can be easily added to various meal recipes at home.

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