If you are currently a vegetarian, or are even toying with the idea of becoming one, you will need to learn about the benefits of soy protein for a vegetarian diet. This is important because when you choose to delete meat and meat products from your diet, you are deleting a major source of protein.
If you don’t provide your body with the right amount of protein it can lead to deficiency. Protein deficiency can lead to fatigue, insulin resistance, hair loss, loss of muscle mass, low body temperature, and even hormonal irregularities. In severe cases it can even be fatal.
Soy is one of the protein food sources available, and it is a great option for vegetarians because it is a natural source and comes in many realms.
Benefits of Soy Protein
The benefits of soy protein for a vegetarian diet are obvious, as it is the closest vegetable protein that resembles meat. There are also huge benefits for non-vegetarians when they include soy as part of their regular diet.
Soy protein can:
- aid in digestion
- provide structure within your body
- assist in everyday movement
- aid in the prevention of many types of cancer (breast, colon, prostate, uterine)
- aid in the prevention of heart disease
- assist in alleviating menopausal symptoms
- lower cholesterol
- help prevent osteoporosis
- help lower blood pressure
Uses of Soy Protein
Some foods that include soy proterin are:
- whole soybeans
- soybean oil
- soy milk
- soy flour
- some sports bars
- breakfast cereals
- veggie burgers
- soy nut snacks
Some vegetarians choose to include soy powder when making common food recipes such as soups, stews, muffins, and other baked goods. You can also use soy milk to make pudding or milkshakes and tofu to make casseroles. There are now tons of cookbooks and recipes available that include soy protein as a main ingredient.
For optimum benefit of soy protein in a vegetarian diet, soy should be used in moderation; in other words, don’t overdo it! Soy protein should also be ingested as part of a food source as opposed to pill form. This is so that the soy can naturally interact with other foods to create the needed amino acids and enzymes.