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Soy: great and terrible

Elena, why are people so afraid of soy?

Is there really so much harm in it, as they say?

People’s fear of soy products is primarily explained by information about genetic interference in the nature of the plant itself, when a well-studied gene is introduced into its structure, due to which the plant has specific, well-defined and expected properties.

Soybean, along with corn, is the main object of genetic engineering in the world. Why it happened?

The fact is that it is used as animal feed, and gene modification can significantly increase the yield of fodder soybeans.

Only 0.1% of all soybean in the world goes to the production of “human” soybean products, and these plants undergo a slightly different genetic modification than fodder.

And they are grown for other, more complex technologies.

However, there have been cases of uncleanliness of some manufacturing companies, as a result of which fodder plants got into the production of food for people.

It is these cases that basically provoked a boom of information about the harm of genetically modified products in general.

That is, there is no harm from soybean with a “correctly” altered gene structure?

As for the harm from genetically modified products, including soybeans, the real situation is as follows: for more than twenty years of creation of genetically modified plants in the scientific literature there has not been a single reliable report about any negative impact on the human body .

I do not take the materials of popular publications and the media — they do not have scientific credibility.

In my opinion, the harm from eating genetically modified foods in any case is no more than from plants treated with pesticides grown on soils, abundantly (often without measure) “enriched” with artificial fertilizers, and from overeating in general.

The harm from eating soy as a plant, to which our digestive system is traditionally not accustomed, is incomparably greater than from the fact of its genetic modification.

I would add that in Russia the cultivation of genetically modified soybeans is prohibited, but there is no ban on the sale of products from such soybeans.

Therefore, to eat or not to eat soy products is a question that everyone decides for himself individually.

Are there components in soy that can be especially harmful if it is consumed frequently?

In soybeans there are so-called phytohormones that can affect the human hormone system, in particular, the female reproductive system.

Therefore, for women wishing to become pregnant, as well as expecting a child, it is better not to get involved in soy products. Phytohormones also affect the thyroid gland, making it difficult for it to function.

This is another argument against soy use by pregnant women, since insufficient thyroid function can trigger preterm labor.

Soy is not recommended for use in baby food, since hypofunction of the thyroid leads to a delay in their intellectual and physical development.

Therefore, children suffering from intolerance to milk protein and being artificially fed soybean mixtures should be under the constant supervision of an endocrinologist.

However, I will note right away that in reasonable quantities, the same phytohormones contribute to the rejuvenation of the female body, prevent breast cancer, osteoporosis.

Soy contains and lecithin is produced from it, which plays a special role in ensuring the vital activity of the body: for example, the main «biochemical shop» of our body — the liver — is 65% phospholipids, which are part of lecithin, and the efficiency of the heart is proportional to the concentration of lecithin in the heart muscle.

In addition, soy products are an excellent diet therapy tool for patients with diabetes, prophylactic — for people with a predisposition to cancer.

So a reasonable use of soy products in the diet does not only harm the body, but also brings undoubted benefits.

Soy contains negligible amounts of gluten, so it is considered a gluten-free product.

Therefore, products from soybeans are included in the diet recommended for people suffering from gluten intolerance.

Are there any allergic reactions to soy?

Allergy to soy protein occurs mainly in children up to two or three years old. As a rule, it is transferred to the inheritance from the parents. Statistics say about 5-10% of children.

With age, these phenomena pass.

In adults, soy allergy is extremely rare and qualifies more as an individual intolerance to soy protein.

However, if soybeans were treated with pesticides or grown using chemical fertilizers, as well as genetically modified, then allergic reactions to such a product are more common.

Why is «vegetable» meat, cottage cheese, milk made from soy?

Why not from other legumes?

Protein soybeans in its composition is closest to the proteins of animal origin. This soy compares favorably with other legumes and cereals.

Soy proteins are not only very nutritious, but when properly processed, animal proteins are very similar in texture and taste.

What products does soy combine with — and with which to combine it is undesirable?

In my opinion, soybean and its products are poorly combined with all protein products of animal origin and animal fats. More or less allowed combinations with fish and seafood.

Do not eat them together with other legumes.

The optimal and most useful combinations of soy forms with all, without exception, vegetables — raw, stewed and boiled, as well as greens and vegetable seasonings.

SOY MILK — a complete replacement for cow? For example, is there more calcium or less?

And in general: what good and bad to expect from such a replacement?

Of course, they are not identical. Soy milk does not contain cholesterol and lactose — this is its plus.

That is why people who suffer from lactose intolerance or are allergic to cow’s milk protein can drink it.

In soy milk there is no cholesterol and there is a full complex of polysaturated fatty acids, which means that it is indispensable for those who are prone to cardiovascular diseases.

By the amount of calcium soy milk is significantly inferior to cow milk.

However, it has another property that has a beneficial effect on the state of the skeleton and the entire musculoskeletal system: due to the presence of phytohormones, milk and dairy drinks from soy are effective prevention of osteoporosis.

Can I drink soy milk in its pure form?

What dishes can be prepared with soy milk — the same as with natural?

Soy milk can be consumed in the same way as animal milk — drink it in its pure form, boil porridge on it, make milkshakes with fruit and berries, puddings, add to coffee or tea.

Fermented milk soy products are very good — yogurt, kefir.

They are absorbed much better than milk.

Their soy milk is prepared and bean curd — tofu.

CRAFT is made from soy milk as well as normal — from milk?

Yes, in a similar way: soybean milk is fermented with a special leaven or acid (hydrochloric, acetic or citric), and then protein clumps are pressed.

What products does it combine with?

Does tofu have the same shelf life as cottage cheese?

Tofu is best combined with vegetables, herbs, algae.

Fresh tofu without preservatives is stored for 3-5 days, in vacuum packaging — up to 14 days.

When adding preservatives, tofu can be stored for several months, but I do not recommend using such tofu.

Many believe that SOYA SAUCE is very healthy and that is why they prefer it to any other sauce.

Others believe that soy sauce can replace salt, which is much more harmful to the body.

Is it so?

Soy sauce is made by fermenting soybeans under the action of specific aspergillus bacteria.

The traditional technology of its preparation is the fermentation (fermentation) of soybeans: they turn into a liquid mass and — due to the activity of microorganisms — are enriched with some biologically active substances.

The resulting dark liquid sauce is rich in trace elements, vitamins and many other beneficial substances.

The recipe for making soy sauce involves the use of conventional cooking or (more often) edible sea salt.

Seasoning food not with table salt, but with soy sauce, you get dishes with richer flavor and less salt.

Recently, the MISO SOUP, which can be ordered at any Japanese restaurant, has been very popular in Russia.

Is it useful?

Miso soup is prepared on the basis of soybean miso paste with the addition of any ingredients — vegetables, legumes, potatoes, seaweed, fish, seafood, even meat and poultry.

Miso paste is a fermented product of softened soybeans and cereals (mainly barley and dark or light rice) under the action of a special starter.

According to the traditional recipe, the fermentation process lasts from a week to several years.

Currently, many manufacturers (albeit not all) have somewhat simplified this procedure.

Depending on the composition and recipe of the preparation, miso paste has a color ranging from white to dark brown and even red, with a different consistency, from thick grape to softer and more uniform.

Miso pasta is not only seasoned with soups.

It is used as a seasoning for various vegetable, fish and meat dishes.

Miso paste is rich in proteins, it contains lecithin, glutamic acid, B vitamins and many microorganisms — they help to digest food and regulate the work of the entire gastrointestinal tract.

Residents of central Russia dish with miso, but like all products from soybeans, should be introduced into your diet with caution and gradually.

Since our digestive system is traditionally not adapted to the proteins and enzymes that make up miso, at first, undesirable reactions from the intestines, the liver, and allergic manifestations are quite possible.

What is soy meat?

And of all the soybean processing products, the so-called “textured soy products” are the richest in proteins — that is, soy meat. The method of production of soy meat ensures the preservation of all the valuable nutrients of soybeans.

After swelling in water or other food liquids (vegetable broths, juices, broths) they resemble the texture of protein products.

Yes, it improves — and it is recommended with an imperfect blood formula in general.

However, its usefulness is not only that.

Judge for yourself: all eight essential amino acids are present in soy meat.

It contains a record amount of iron compared with other products of plant origin — more than 10 mg per 100 grams!

In addition, iron in soy is in this form and in this combination with other mineral substances, which allows it to be absorbed by our body by 80%!

Before you start cooking dishes from it, you must soak it in water, broth, vegetable broth in the ratio of 1: 2 (or 1: 3) for several hours (from an hour to twelve hours — this should be written on the package) or boil within 15-20 minutes. You can add spices, seasonings, salt, soy sauce to taste.

After soaking, when the meat becomes juicy, with it you can cook traditional dishes such as salads and soups.

Especially good soy meat combined with vegetables.

«Soy asparagus» is a product of soy milk.

The composition of yuba is similar to tofu, but has a slightly different structure.

Milk soy protein protein is settled and drained, forming a clot.

This clot is boiled (or kept at a temperature of 90 degrees) for a long time, during which it condenses, after which it forms an asparagus-yuba «pigtail».

In dried form, «asparagus» can be stored for up to a year.

Before cooking, it is soaked in water with the addition of various spices.

What products do you want to combine?

The ideal combination of «soy asparagus», like all protein foods, forms with vegetables.

It is permissible to combine it with cereals and potatoes.

But with animal protein and fats it is better not to use it.

Soy sprouts are very useful. They are rich in vitamins, they contain a full complex of vitamins of group B, vitamins C, A, E, K. They contain calcium, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, iron, zinc, chromium.

In general, a storehouse of vitamins and microelements.

And a real energy drink.

The usefulness of wheat germ depends on their size.

Is there a match between the size and utility of soybean sprouts?

The amount of nutrients depends little on the size of soybean seedlings.

As a rule, manufacturers bring to the stores a product that has the necessary maturity.

However, seedlings have a very short shelf life — just a few days.

The faster you use them, the more benefits will be for your body.

Before use, soy sprouts are best to pour boiling water or boil no more than one minute. You can eat them as a separate dish, seasoned with mayonnaise, vegetable oil, soy sauce, or add to salads from raw and steamed vegetables.

You can also cook from them soups with various ingredients.

You can fry.

However, remember: the less heat treatment of seedlings, the more vitamins remain in them.

What is soy flour?

Can it replace wheat and in what cases?

Soy flour contains significantly more protein than wheat flour and flour from other grains.

Therefore, in its pure form it is not used.

Soy protein, which is in flour, has binding properties, so it is very good to add it to different types of dough in a 1: 1 ratio with wheat or other cereal flour, without using eggs.

Such baking is good as lean food.

What is the calorie content of soy products?

The most high-calorie soybean oil — 890 kcal.

The calorie content of the finished soy meat, tofu, sauce and soaked «asparagus» does not exceed 150 kcal.

It all depends on the specific recipe: the caloric content of soy sauce of different companies varies from 35 to 120 kcal, the caloric content of soy meat — from 90 to 150, depending on the method of preparation.

Which soybean manufacturers would you recommend?

Classic soy products can be bought at any Japanese and Korean food stores and even in the markets.

However, these products are made from soybeans grown far beyond the borders of Russia, the recipe for their preparation includes seasonings and spices that can cause allergic reactions in a person unaccustomed to their use, that is, these products are produced without taking into account the physiological characteristics of the average Russian resident.

Over the past ten years, a large number of domestic producers have appeared on the soybean products market.

Their products best meet the physiological needs of Russians, as they are made from domestic raw materials, using high-tech equipment and under strict sanitary and hygienic control.

However, Russian-made tofu does not always look like a classic and is often criticized by gourmets.

So choose you.

From domestic companies engaged in the production of soybean food products (not semi-finished products for the food industry), Inter Soya LLC, Belok CJSC, ASSOYA Soybean Processors Association, SOYA CJSC, Soya Products LLC have long been firmly established .

I myself have been consuming the products of these companies for a long time, giving them to my child, and I sincerely recommend them to everyone.

Soy is added to many products, such as sausages, cottage cheese, frozen semi-finished products, pastries, confectionery.

How is the presence of soy in the composition of the products?

Most often, these additives are soy flour and soy protein isolate (similar to «textured soy products, soy meat). I do not really like this way of solving the food problem.

The fact is that often soybean supplements transform a product from good to completely indigestible.

For example, I consider the combination of meat and soy unacceptable, and if everything is sealed in dough with eggs, then an attack of cholecystitis after such a meal is provided to you.

According to the “Technical Regulations for Packing Products Labeling”, updated in January of the current year, all ingredients included in the product should be listed on the consumer packaging.

That is, for example, on a package with dumplings or on a sausage loaf it should be written: “Contains soy protein isolate”.

Unfortunately, food manufacturers often ignore these requirements and do not report soy additives on their product packaging.

Therefore, I would recommend to avoid in the food semi-finished products and cooked sausages, to cook their own food from natural products. Meat should be meat and soy bean.

That’s the whole secret.

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