Edamame: The Extraordinary Soy Protein Snack

Edamame, raw soybeans still in the pod, are a delicious source of soy protein. If you’ve been to a sushi bar recently, you might have been served these vegetables as a complimentary starter to your meal. Be sure, though, that you don’t make the embarrassing mistake of eating the pod whole. It is the soybeans within the pod that are supposed to be eaten, and these can be exposed simply by squeezing them from the pod. So, what can you expect from this supposed wonder food with the odd-sounding name? Below, you can find an assortment of information about the food everyone seems to be talking about.

Health Benefits and Nutrition Information

One of the main assets to eating edamame is that they provide such a burst of nutrients in relatively small quantities. Even consuming as little as a half cup of them per day will provide a boost of fiber (9 grams) and protein (11 grams), and allow you to feel fuller while consuming less calories (120 per half cup). So, you’ll find that you’ll be able to consume less while feeling just as satisfied. Edamame is also a great source of iron, providing as much as a four ounce piece of roasted chicken, and contains all 9 amino acids the body cannot make. That fact alone make edamame a wonder food. Even with just a half cup, many of your nutritional bases are covered.

Great Snack

Since these vegetables are so dense and filling, they provide the perfect between meal snack. Maybe your first inkling is to reach for that bag of chips or that tray of cookies, but you know you’ll regret it later on. Since edamame fills you up so rapidly and causes you to remain full longer, you’ll find that you won’t need any other snack until it’s time for the next meal. This is especially useful to chronic dieters who can’t ever seem to shake the three o’clock food cravings every afternoon.

Vegetarians and Vegans

If you’re a vegetarian or a vegan, you know that you’re always on the lookout for a plant source that can provide the protein needed with the absence of meat products. Though edamame can’t fully supplant meat as a protein source, it is just another option than can further widen you overall palate. Edamame can be great as a snack, and can be added to any number of dishes to enhance the flavor, such as salads, dips, salsas and soups. Plus, they’re always a nice finger food for when you just need something to snack on.

Edamame is usually available pre-cooked in the frozen food aisle of most supermarkets. They typically come either shelled (just the peas) or with the pods still intact. If you’re on a diet, the variety that are still in the pods could be a great alternative, as they are harder to open. Therefore, it will take you longer to consume and will allow your body to realize when it’s satisfied. Too often people eat and eat without giving their bodies the chance to catch up and realize that they’re satisfied. Edamame forces you to slow down before you’ve eaten more than you realize.

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