Join soybean growers and consumers across the nation in celebrating Soy Foods Month this April.
The United States is one of the top soybean producing countries in the world. Generally, more than 80 million acres of soybeans are grown in the country each year, and farmers are dedicated to meeting the world’s demand for this important crop in a sustainable way. Through soil and water conservation, crop rotation, and carbon net neutrality goals, U.S. soybean farmers provide nutritious, versatile, and sustainable food to people across the globe.
Soy is praised for its health benefits, including its ability to reduce the risk of heart disease by lowering cholesterol. Its protein and oil, both conventional and high oleic varieties, carry heart health claims from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration that states twenty-five grams of soy protein or 20.5 grams of soybean oil daily as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol may reduce the risk of heart disease. In addition to heart health benefits, soy foods may also improve cognitive function, lower blood pressure, enhance muscle and bone health and reduce risk of some cancers.
Another one of soy’s strengths is its versatility. From more traditional soy foods like tofu, edamame and tempeh to modern soy foods such as plant-based alternatives and soy protein bars, there is a soy product for every palate. It’s also commonly used as an ingredient in snack foods like potato chips cooked in soybean oil and chocolate bars where soy lecithin is used as a stabilizer and flavor protector.
Celebrate Soy Foods Month by incorporating more of this high-quality protein into your diet. Here are a few ideas:
- Try new soy foods! Tofu isn’t the only soy-based food at the grocery store. Enjoy popping edamame out of the pods for a snack, or add some protein into your pancakes with soy flour.
- Simple swaps: Start your day with a soy-based yogurt or serve soymilk with your favorite breakfast cereal.
- Seek out soy on the label: Most vegetable oil on store shelves is 100% soybean oil. Soybean oil is recognized for its heart health benefits, and it also has a neutral flavor and high heat stability, making it an excellent choice for cooking, baking, sautéing, and more.
“Soy foods are a great way to add healthful nutrients to your diet and support Nebraska farmers,” said Andy Chvatal, Nebraska Soybean Board executive director. “Whether you eat soy directly by sipping soymilk or enjoy soy second-hand though a pork chop or a chicken breast, you are supporting U.S. and Nebraska soybean farmers.”
About the Nebraska Soybean Board: The nine-member Nebraska Soybean Board collects and disburses the Nebraska share of funds generated by the one-half of one percent times the net sales price per bushel of soybeans sold. Nebraska soybean checkoff funds are invested in research, education, domestic and foreign markets, including new uses for soybeans and soybean products.