If you are looking for a new menu option as part of your weight-loss or weight-maintenance program, you may want to consider - or reconsider - soy.
Adding soy to your diet can have advantages, such as providing fewer calories, less saturated fat, and more fiber than other more traditional, high-quality protein sources. Soy is also a common ingredient in weight-loss diets, since it can replace higher-calorie foods without reducing protein intake, thus making you feel fuller longer.
And if you are trying to lose weight, soy can play a key role in helping you preserve lean body mass while you are working to lose weight. This is because soy is a complete protein, meaning that it contains the same essential amino acids as animal sources of protein. Essential amino acids cannot be made by the body and must be consumed from food sources.
Soy has so many benefits, in fact, that the FDA authorized the health claim that 25 grams of soy protein a day can be part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol that will improve heart health. Soy can also assist in protecting against bone loss and some types of cancer.
If, like me, you are not an automatic fan of most soy products, take another look at the supermarket shelves. You may be surprised at how the taste and texture of the new soy products have been improved. Soy has come a long way. The next time you visit the store, check out all the options: soy burgers, soy sausages and brats, soymilk, soy crisps, soy flour - even soy nut butter.
If you are looking for more information about soy, soy foods, and their benefits, visit www.soyfoods.org.