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Soya-bean - Essay Example

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Soy or the soya-bean is common a type of leguminous plant, similar in many ways to other nuts and beans. While it has been introduced to the Western World only recently, it has been cultivated for thousands of years in the Far East and China in particular…
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Download file to see previous pages However, now doubts have been raised by scientists, doctors and nutritionists that soy is not that healthy after all and that soy poses special health risk
A very interesting account of the historical travel of the soy plant in the Western world has been documented by Hymowitz (1990). While his idea that the soy plant was a saviour, or manna from heaven itself, for many people can be and is subjected to much debate, the historical account of the origin of the plant is well worth a read.
Soya bean is a gift to the new world from the ancient oriental (Chinese , Japanese civilization). Before we take up the issue of the actual debate of the nutrient value and the positive and negative effects of this miracle plant, it would be worthwhile to have a brief glimpse into the origin and historical path travelled by it. Recorded history traces of its origin dates back to 2838 BC in China and to 6th century in Japan. Ibn Europe the records show an introduction of the plant as late as the 17th century , with America eventually catching up. Nonetheless, the USA produces one-third of the world's supply and indeed has seen a rise in the actual sales of soy product by nearly 3 times in the past decade.
Like most legumes and beans, soy bean...
Interestingly they also contain a high proportion of fat, however since this is mostly unsaturated fat, the effects of such lipid forms are mostly beneficial for an individual. However it is important to address that this nutrient content profile is applicable to Whole Foods and not Supplements. Much of the research to date has examined dietary soy in the form of whole foods such as tofu, "soymilk," or as soy protein added to foods, and the public health community mostly concurs that these whole foods can be worthwhile additions to a healthy diet. The recently raised concerns, however, focus on specific components of soy, such as the soy isoflavones daidzein and genistein, not the whole food or intact soy protein.
In this respct we need to understand the nutrient content of soy been at the micronutrient level. This is also important since there has been an increase in chemicals, available over the counter in pills and powders, which are both, advertised and marketed as dietary supplements for use by women to help lessen menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes. While it may be possible that soy bean, in whole food has some efficacy for improving a lot of diseased condition, it is imperative to understand that teasing out individual chemicals would not be a good practice.
This problem has been very accurately summarised by Wood; "There are probably hundreds of protective compounds in soy [foods]. It's just too big a leap to assume that a pill could do the same thing" (Woods, 2000). The need to exercise caution hence is clear and care must be taken in hailing soy as the food that can do only good. Nonetheless, there is much effect in the literature which supports the increased prevalence of soy bean as a health food.
C Soybean as Food
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