Although sporadic reports have challenged the benefits of soy, the fact is, studies have consistently shown that this protein- and fiber-rich source of omega-3 fats and disease-fighting isoflavones promotes heart health and reduces the risk of cancers of the prostate and breast. In addition, phytoestrogens in this ancient Asian staple may counter natural estrogen’s negative effects on womensuch as formation of uterine fibroidsand lessen menopausal symptoms. One caveat: the jury is still out on whether soy is good or bad for postmenopausal women who have been diagnosed with hormone-sensitive cancers. It’s best for these women to limit soy intake for now.
Choose It & Use It
Enjoy one or two servings daily of organic soy foodsthe less processed the better. One serving: 1/2 cup tofu, tempeh, or edamame, 1 cup soymilk, or 1 ounce soy nuts. Enrich sauces, smoothies, and soups with silken tofu. Use soft tofu in scrambles or in place of ricotta cheese. Enjoy firm tofu (press out liquid) and tempeh sliced and grilled, diced for stir-fries, or crumbled like ground meat. Snack on edamame and soy nuts.
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Vegetable Gyoza and Edamame Succotash
Gyoza are crescent-shaped Japanese dumplings (sometimes called pot stickers) that can be steamed or pan-fried and are usually served as an appetizer. Here, they are stir-fried with frozen edamame succotash and topped with a black bean sauce for a spicy main dish. If you can’t find edamame succotashmore
Tempeh in Hearty Mushroom-Lager Sauce
This filling entrée tastes like it’s been simmered for hours instead of just 20 minutes. To sweeten the slightly bitter sauce, stir in 1 Tbs. agave nectar with the mustard and use 11/2 cups beer and 1 cup water. Serve over rice or Mashed Potatoes with Chives.more
Black Bean and Edamame Sliders
Here’s the veg answer to Sloppy Joes—edamame lightens up a black bean mixture to keep these sliders from tasting too dense.more
Butternut Squash & Edamame Zosui with Ginger–Green Onion Relish
Zosui is a Japanese soup made with leftover cooked rice. This comforting dish is great when you want something nourishing but not too heavy.more
Edamame Pâté Sandwiches
The pâté can also be spread on crackers or thinned with additional water and used as a dip.more