Researchers have found that eating tofu once per week reduces the heart-disease risk by 18%.
But what is tofu?
Tofu is a soy-based food, also known as bean curd, and is prepared by curdling soy milk and forming it into solid white blocks of varying softness. It can be silken, soft, firm, or extra firm, and can be used in all sorts of ways being a good source of plant-based protein.
Tofu originated in China and rumor has it that a Chinese cook discovered tofu more than 2,000 years ago by accidentally mixing a batch of fresh soy milk with nigari, which is what remains when salt is extracted from seawater, a mineral-rich coagulant used to help tofu solidify and keep its form.
Tofu is a traditional component of the cuisines of Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Singapore and Thailand and it’s a great addition to vegetarian and vegan diets but even if you’re a meat eater you should try it.
Tofu is a rich source of healthy isoflavones, natural plant compounds – as are edamame, peanuts, chickpeas, fava beans, nuts and fruits.
A few benefits of eating tofu:
- Tofu is low in calories but high in protein and contains all of the essential amino acids our body needs, plus it also provides fats, carbs, and a wide variety of vitamins and minerals.
- Contains healthy isoflavones, which are believed to have various health benefits.
- May reduce heart-disease risk and is linked also to a reduce risk of some forms of cancer, breast, digestive, and prostate cancers.
- May reduce the risk of diabetes.
But at the same time, we know that we must consume everything in moderation.
A few downsides of eating tofu:
- Women with estrogen-sensitive breast tumors are advised to limit their soy intake due to tofu’s weak hormonal effects.
- Persons with poor thyroid function are also advised to avoid tofu due to its goitrogen content.
My favourite way of cooking and eating tofu is with spinach, edamame and pine nuts and is very simple: just toss some pine nuts in a pan, add the spinach, the edamame, a little bit of water, salt and pepper and toss for around 5 minutes then add the diced tofu. Mix well and enjoy it. It is great eaten as it is or as a side dish as well.
Did you make this dish? I want to see it! Tag @popsiclesociety on Instagram.