If you are looking for a practical and healthy snack, don't hesitate to choose soybeans. Because, this type of bean contains complete nutrients that are good for the body, including fiber, complex carbohydrates, antioxidants, proteins, various vitamins and minerals. Secretly, soybeans save a myriad of interesting facts that are worth listening to, you know. Come on, find out through the following review.
Healthy facts about soybeans
1. The best source of vegetable protein
Soybeans are a source of high-quality protein. This is because soybeans contain all kinds of essential amino acids. Essential amino acids are a type of amino acid that the body needs, but cannot be produced alone, because it needs to be imported from outside through food.
Judging from the nutritional content, every 100 grams of soybeans contains 17 grams of protein which is good for building body muscle. That's why, soybeans are the best source of vegetable protein.
2. Soybeans processed into tempeh contain more nutrients than know
Tempeh and tofu are two food sources of vegetable protein that are liked by many people. Although both are made from soybeans, in fact tempeh is more nutrient-dense than tofu. How come it is, huh?
This is influenced by the process of making tempeh and tofu differently. Tempe is made by fermentation, while tofu is made from compacted soy milk.
Soybeans, which are raw ingredients of tofu and tempeh, contain antinutrient compounds. Antinutrients are compounds that can inhibit the absorption of certain nutrients in the body.
Well, these compounds cannot be removed through the coagulation process (compaction). Because tofu is made from compacted soy milk, it means that the antinutrient compounds cannot be removed. On the other hand, antinutrients in tempeh are easier to remove because they are made by fermentation. Well, that's why tempeh contains more nutrients than tofu.
3. Healthier than red meat
According to Kathy McManus, a dietitian and director of the Department of Nutrition at Harvard, the amount of protein from processed soy products - such as tofu or edamame - can replace the amount of protein from red meat and other protein sources.
Red meat contains high saturated fat which can cause cholesterol buildup in the body. Meanwhile, soybeans contain polyunsaturated fats (good fats) that are much healthier. So, there is no doubt that soybeans can meet the body's fat intake in a healthier way.
4. Reducing the risk of breast cancer
Many people say that soybeans can trigger breast cancer in women. In fact, this is just a figment.
In fact, soybeans contain the most isoflavones than other food ingredients. Isoflavones are a type of antioxidant that can actually help ward off cancer-causing free radicals.
Isoflavones do have estrogen-like properties that can trigger cancer growth - if over-produced. However, according to Marji McCullough, ScD, RD, a director of epidemiology and nutrition at the American Cancer Society, no studies have shown that soy can trigger breast cancer.
The effect is exactly the opposite, namely soybeans can reduce the risk of breast cancer, as reported by Today's Dietitian. Isoflavones in soybeans have a balanced way of working, which acts like estrogen and is antiestrogenic. That is, these isoflavones can stop excessive estrogen formation while providing antioxidant properties to suppress cancer growth.
5. Eating soybeans is safe for male fertility
Many people say that men shouldn't eat soybeans because it can trigger fertility problems. The content of isoflavones in soybeans is feared to reduce testosterone in men, making it infertile.
In fact, a study showed that men who consumed 40 milligrams of soy isoflavones every day for 4 months did not experience a decrease in the quality of testosterone or sperm count. This means that soy does not make men experience fertility problems. In fact, consumption of soybeans can actually reduce the risk of prostate cancer in men.
6. Soy milk is safe for toddlers
Many parents do not provide soy milk for their children for fear that their development will be disrupted. In fact, until now no research has been able to prove it.
This is evidenced by a 2012 study that compared the development of infants fed breast milk, cow's milk, and soy milk. In fact, all babies show normal growth and development in the first year of life.
However, breast milk remains the best food for babies up to two years old. After that, then you can give soy milk according to the doctor's advice.
7. Soy does not trigger hypothyroidism
There may have heard the myth that revealed that the content of phytoestrogens in soy can trigger hypothyroidism. Phytoestrogens are compounds in plants that are similar to estrogen in the human body. Estrogen is one of the risk factors for cancer if the levels are excessive in the body.
Indeed, a study published in Clinical Thyroidology in 2011 found that as many as ten percent of women experience hypothyroidism after eight weeks of consuming soy protein supplements. But in fact, this only occurs in women who contain 16 mg of phytoestrogens per day, aka with excessive doses.
While for women taking low-dose soy protein supplements there is no change in thyroid function. So, soy is not proven to trigger hypothyroidism if it is still consumed within reasonable limits.
8. Lowers blood sugar and nourishes the heart
Soybeans are one of the foods that allow you to reap two benefits at once, which is to keep blood sugar stable and maintain heart health. This is influenced by low levels of the glycemic index of soybeans.
The glycemic index is a value that shows how fast your body converts carbohydrates into blood sugar. Each type of food and drink has a different glycemic index. The higher the glycemic index, the carbohydrates will be more quickly converted to blood sugar. As a result, blood sugar levels in the body will also rise faster.
The good news, soybeans contain a low glycemic index that doesn't make your blood sugar rise dramatically. At the same time, these beans can also make the heart healthier, thereby reducing the risk of heart disease.
9. Reducing the effects of hot flashes on menopausal women
Based on a study published in the journal Menopause in 2012, eating foods derived from soybeans can help relieve symptoms that appear when women enter menopause. Especially is the sensation of heat and swelling that commonly occurs at night (hot flashes).
Starting from menopause, the estrogen hormone in the body will drop dramatically. This hormonal change causes you to experience 'heat' at menopause.
Consumption of one to two servings of soybeans every day is proven to reduce the frequency and severity of hot flashes. However, further research is still needed to find out how long this soybean can overcome hot flash in menopausal women.
10. Make satiety longer
For those of you who are on a diet, soybeans can be a healthy snack choice for you. This is because soybeans are a type of beans that have a low glycemic index level.
Foods with a low glycemic index tend to be absorbed more slowly by the body. By eating snacks processed soybeans, the stomach will feel full longer and control your appetite. As a result, you won't even eat when you eat big later.
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