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HEALTH & FITNESS ARTICLES

Benefits of Soy Protein

Soy protein is emerging as one of the great alternative protein sources for human consumption. Health experts are excited about how soy protein can change the face of nutrition. What’s all the rage? Here are some great reasons to get your soy.

Soy Protein is Plant Protein
Soy beans contain a complete protein and have one of the best protein digestibilities among all protein sources. Soy beans also contain little or no fat and have virtually no cholesterol. Lactose intolerant individuals will be pleased to know that soy beans contain no lactose.

Being a plant protein, soy is free from steroids and the antibiotics that animal protein may contain. It is also free from parasites that contaminate some of these products. Soybeans also contain none of the diseases one can contract from meat-based protein sources, such as Mad Cow Disease, or Foot and Mouth Disease.

Vegetarians love this bean, as it provides a comparable – if not better – source of protein as compared to its animal counterparts. It provides a protein source that is better and easier to digest and is comparable to most protein supplements.

Soy Beans are Very Versatile
You can easily use soybeans in many different ways.  Various cuisines, especially Asian regional cooking, recognize the value of the humble soy bean. A variety of naturally yummy delicacies are all soy based: tofu, soy pudding, Soya milk, and meat substitutes – not to mention condiments such as soy sauce, and hoi sin sauce.

To counter the problem of world hunger, the growing of soybeans has been suggested. Not only are soybeans easy to grow and harvest, they will grow pretty much anywhere and produces large yields in a short amount of time. There have been farmers reported to have replaced their entire crop line with soy bean plants.

The Great Substitute
Soy is low in fat and can be used to substitute most protein sources. When cooking, you may use soy substitutes instead of flour for a low fat alternative. This makes it a great protein source for those that are looking to lose weight without compromising their protein requirements.

Bodybuilders are considering how this can make their jobs a lot easier. Without the fat and with all of the protein goodness – easily digestible at that – bodybuilding has just received a fantastic food.

Although bodybuilders are currently figuring out where exactly soy fits into their fitness regimen, it doesn’t take away anything from what soy can contribute to the overall health of a person.

It is always a good idea to stick to natural protein rather than processed protein. The best advantage of this food can be attributed to how it perfectly fits into anyone’s low-fat, high-protein diet.  Soy products can be incorporated into shakes and drinks. And being lactose-free, lactose intolerant people will still be able to get their milk shake fix without having to suffer the ill effects of dairy.

Soy products are also a great source of other nutrients, such as saponins, isoflavones, and phytosterols. Saponins help support a healthy immune system. It also combines with cholesterol to avoid increased absorption of cholesterol in the body. Phytosterols additionally help reduce the absorption of cholesterol into the body in the same way saponins do.

Isoflavones are powerful antioxidants and help prevent the effects of free radicals on the body. They prevent many of the signs of aging and have been known to help prevent cancer. This alone makes soy a miracle protein source in its own right.

Isoflavones, along with vitamins A,C, and E are among the best defenders we have in the fight against such diseases – they also counter the effects of pollution, and stress.

How Much is Too Much
Unlike some other protein sources, it is pretty safe to consume a large amount of soy products. While allergies to soy products exist, cases are few and far between. When changing to a soy-based diet, however, it would be best to consult your physician or your nutritionist. Ask specifically if soy interferes with any prescription drugs you are taking, or is not right for your particular medical situation.

Soy can be a great food for people who are looking for a low-fat, low-cost source of protein that does not entail the side effects of some animal-based products. So try it out - it may become the new favorite food on your menu.


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