Need a protein-packed, low-carb, omega-3 rich food? Look no further than soy. This protein source is one of the best foods around, although its benefits are a little controversial. Let's take a look at the great and not-so-great aspects of this superfood.
A member of the pea family, the soy plant produces beans that come in pods. These beans can be roasted, or they can be made into all kinds of food products, including tofu, miso and seitan. Soy is even a great substitute for dairy and nut products, and it can be turned into soymilk, soy butter, soy ice cream, soy yogurt and soy nut butters.
Soy contains a lot of protein, and it's the most economical type of protein available, meaning it doesn't cost as much to produce as animal protein does. It's also really low-carb, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has even ruled that if you have a diet that's low in saturated fat and cholesterol, eating soy may help you lower your cholesterol. If you're a vegetarian or vegan, soy can be one of your favorite foods, because it'll give your body the protein it needs.
Before we get to the questionable side of soy, let's talk about what's good about it on the next page.