The Health Benefits of Soya…

March 28, 2007

Go to fullsize imageAlternative food choices other than meat or poultry include the use of soya to produce meat/poultry like dishes which are now becoming very popular among vegetarians.  These dishes really look like the popular meat balls and taste like meat BUT devoid of the bad add ons of the accumulated fat in eating meat. 

 In a recent study published in Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture, April 2007 , ingestion of black soya beans resulted in health benefits which included a significant weight loss, and more importantly the lowering of cholesterol levels which as a result can produce a better metabolic profile that may include better insulin action and therefore a possible prevention of diabetes.

In that study, the researchers at Hanyang University, allowed 32 rats to gorge on a fatty diet, supplemented with various levels of black soya. The results showed that, after two weeks, “those getting 10% of their energy from black soya had gained half as much weight as those in the control group. Total blood cholesterol fell by 25% and LDL (so-called ‘bad’) cholesterol fell by 60% in the rats in the 10% group.”

This study really presents the good side of a soya based meal.  Not only is it a good alternative to a protein rich meat meal but is also an important component of a balanced meal that is not only low in fat but also high in fibre and a very good source of complex carbohydrates.

Let’s Enjoy “meat” Without The Fat!

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48 Responses to “The Health Benefits of Soya…”

  1. maxim Says:

    I love soya. However, I am not sure if this could trigger an increase in my uric acid level because as of now, it is quite elevated.

  2. Doc Gerry Says:

    Yes Maxim…it contains at least 190 mg of uric per 100 gm. It’s not a heavy weight in increasing your uric acid compared to pigs liver, fish anchovy or tuna in oil but has almost the same uric acid level as pork fillet, usual fish or a chicken breast.

  3. mariz Says:

    Is this soya the same with the “tokwa” we usually see at the supermarket?

  4. mariz Says:

    Addendum: how about the “taho” we buy from the street vendor? they said it contains soya beans, would that be a healthy option?

  5. Doc Gerry Says:

    Yes…tofu is tokwa and tokwa is made from soy beans. Tofu is actually made by coagulating soy milk and pressing the resulting curds. The soy milk, is produced by soaking, grinding, boiling, and straining dried soybeans. There is also a specific black bean tofu. The texture of black bean tofu is more gelatinous than regular tofu and has an earthy “black bean taste.”

    Definitley taho is a healthy option for everyone to enjoy!

  6. Chris Says:

    Hey doc, I’ve been hearing a lot of bad rep about soy. Such as soy milk or soy in general increases estrogen levels which can cause problems in both males and females. Most especially for kids who still haven’t gone through puberty yet. Any words?

  7. Doc Gerry Says:

    Hi Chris. Sorry for the late reply. Just arrived from Seattle today from a convention.

    The specific compound present in soy that resembles estrogen in soy is the protein called geniesten. The level of the estrogen like activity however with these phytoestrogens are weak and therefore does not exactly equate to estrogen effect in terms of benefits and risks.

    With regard to soy in puberty… some studies done in Asian countries as reported by the American Cancer Society suggest that “eating soy foods before puberty may lower the risk of female breast cancer in later years, by helping breast cells become more mature — a process called differentiation that reduces the chances the cells will turn malignant later.”

    But Helferich’s study suggests that after menopause, soy phytoestrogens may produce some risks similar to those of human estrogen or HRT.

  8. Bhanu Says:

    its an wonderful food on earth… soya makes my day go in hiengergic way.. soya is excellent for growing muscles, as i t hi hi in proteins and chain of amnio acids for growth of muscles. i personaly experienced the magic of soya.. woohhaah!!!!! soya the Great.. In future i name my girl baby as SOYA!!! haa haaa haaaa~~~~!!!!!!

  9. Mark Says:

    Hello Doc,

    Just would like to ask if eating TAHO everyday is still good for the health? I also found an article below regarding the study of Helferich. Can you please say more about his study? Is it good for women to eat Soy Beans like TAHO everyday? Is TAHO puried product of Soy?

    http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=79

    On article: For Optimal Health, Eat Whole Soy Foods, Not Purified Soy Products

    Thank you Doc!

  10. Doc Gerry Says:

    The purified form that the articel is talking about is the form sold in supplement stores, When we speak of our native taho…actually it is made from fresh soft/silken tofu wherein brown sugar is added then heated and caramelized to create a viscous syrup. So not much processing is made here.

    No studies have been done extensively on Taho but being made from fresh tofu reassures you that based on the article published in Carcinogenesis that it should be safe.

    Thanks Mark for sharing the articel to the readers.

  11. Jomar Says:

    What is the caloric contents of Taho

  12. Doc Gerry Says:

    Sorry for the late reply Jomar. Just arrived form a convention in Vienna. Approximately 1/2 cup of taho willl give you around 150 to 180 calories.

  13. wayne curtis Says:

    hi i read that soya might cause bone and heart problems later in life

  14. Doc Gerry Says:

    Hi Wayne… please furnish me your source and I would gladly research it becuase so far, I havent seen any good data to support that contetnion…but I maybe wrong. I would gladly look into this matter. Thanks for bringing this up.

  15. Blue Says:

    Hi Doc. Is tofu a healthy food, and is it good for those who are on diet?

  16. Doc Gerry Says:

    Yes it’s a health food. In terms of “diet”, just remeber…it all boils down to calories and remember, 1/2 cup gives you 150 to 180 calories so make sure you count them in in your total calorie intake daily.

  17. Lodie A Says:

    Hi Doc,

    Just want to ask if eating Soya, will help increase male sperm count. Does it also help for fertility.

  18. Doc Gerry Says:

    In fact Lodie…some studies are showing it to be the contrary. If a woman wants to have a baby, she should avoid taking soya products because these contain a compound called genistein which in laboratory experiments can kill the sperm.

  19. karl Says:

    wow, reading the article, questions, and answers to the questions fed my curious mind.

    Hi doc, I also have some simple questions. Are the benefits mentioned above include all kinds of soya-made food?

    And is it true that the usual taho in the Philippines has plaster of paris? I am just curious because someone told me about that and I am quite bothered because I love eating taho.

    Finally, is there a big difference between the usual-made taho in the Philippines and the purely soya-made taho or pure soya-made milk?

    thanks =)

    • Doc Gerry Says:

      Hi Karl… here is what I know of our Philippine Taho: The main ingredient is the fresh soft/silken tofu with Sago “pearls,” which are boiled to a gummy consistency until they are a transluscent white. I am not aware of it having Plaster of Paris…scary thought! The only differecne would be the kind of soya that is used to make the taho

  20. seva Says:

    is it okay if we only cook fried taho ?

  21. arlen santos Says:

    hello doc i ask that it’s okay that my 9 year old son always eat taho almost everyday it is good for her? My husband told me that will cause gout and also become “Baog” someday.

  22. sana sani Says:

    Hi Doctor,

    I have recently started eating Taho (I love it) from a supermarket in Dubai (my current place of residence).

    As I am struggling with losing weight, what is the caloric content of Taho with Sago (minus the sweet brown syrup) ? Is it beneficial for me to have it (whether I am on diet or not ) ?

    I have not been able to find much information on Taho on web.

    Thank you !

    • alfonso Says:

      hello where in dubai i can buy a taho!? is it the same taho that i buy in the philippines which is hot when it is serve? thanks

  23. Jen Tagasa Says:

    Hi Dr. Tan,

    I’m writing a story on soybean consumption for a magazine called Garage. I am hoping to include your thoughts on the subject, so I wonder if I may email you my questions directly. Your professional opinion on soy consumption in the country will greatly help me construct a clearer article.

    I look forward to your reply. Thank you very much!

  24. jop Says:

    hi doc gerry

    im a body builder doc, and want to increase my muscle leans and cuts, would taho or id say soy milk help me achieve my goal?

  25. JM Says:

    Hi, do you know how much protein is contained in Taho (protein/gram)?

  26. adeline Says:

    Hi Dr. Gerry,
    Am trying to have baby(my hubby will be back 3-4 months from now, when should i stop eating tofu/tokwa?
    Thank you!

  27. dear Says:

    hi doc gerry,
    my husband have diabetes,and he drink everyday 2 glass of TAHO,it is not bad for him??and also we are trying to have a baby,i read some articles that drink taho or soya will kill your sperm count,its that true??so it mean we should stop to drink taho or soya??i really hoping for your response doc,
    THANK YOU !:)

    • Doc Gerry Says:

      Hi Dear… on the contrary…replacing a serving of meat with tofu can help increase fertility according to the study done in Harvard and published in Harvar Health letter…

  28. kchee uy-santos Says:

    hi goodday!!! i just want to know if drinking a big glass of taho everyday is safe for my baby coz im 7mos pregnant now and i drink 1glass of taho everyday for 4mos now. tnx. godbless.

  29. james maynard Says:

    Yes, a classmate of mine in design school was with a groupmate who’s family business was taho. They we’re doing an installation project when my friend asked, “where can we get some eskayola(?)” or plaster of paris. The groupmate said, “we have it! we add it to the taho.

  30. Ashalea Says:

    Doc,im worried my sister in law start to feed my niece taho since he was 1yrs old till now that hes 3yrs old is it ok doc?

  31. Ashalea Says:

    Doc,im worried is it true dat taho contain,protease inhibitor,phytic acid,soy lectins,and nitrosamines dat can be harmful for us?

  32. Caryl Borja Says:

    hmm is soya a good food to prevent dengue??i hear some sayings about it..

  33. elaine angeles Says:

    is taho good for a baby?

  34. gaidralyn b. gundao Says:

    IS TOKWA GOOD FOR PERSON WHO HAS HYPERTENSION?…

  35. joy ann Says:

    does taho is good for fertility?

  36. Benjie Says:

    Is taho rich in iron, that could possibly increase hemoglobin of my dad who has problem with his digestion and vowel movements. He is on soft diet. My father is already 92 years old. thanks


  37. Is Taho a low residue diet?

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