This post is sponsored by Soy Connection.
As a registered dietitian, I am so excited to see a shift toward a more plant-based way of eating. Embracing more food from the earth is not only good for our health but for the environment as well.
While most of us think of fruits and vegetables when we think of balanced plant-based diets, I want to bring more attention to a nutritious and often misunderstood component– soy!
I am excited to partner with Soy Connection, a collaboration of health, nutrition, and food industry experts with U.S. soybean farmers to set the record straight on soy foods and delicious, approachable ways to enjoy them.
Why a plant-based diet is healthy
While plant-based diets have no official definition, I define it as a focus on mostly food from the earth rather than animal products. This includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, legumes and plant proteins like soy.
Plant-based foods from a nutrition perspective, are inherently low or devoid of saturated fat (with the exception of coconut), the fat we want to avoid in excess due to its potential link to heart disease.
Another great thing about plant-based foods is that they naturally contain vitamins, minerals and fiber, a nutrient that most Americans fall short on according to NHANES data.
All about soy
Soy is one of the most complete sources of plant-based proteins available. This means that it provides all of the essential amino acids, or protein building blocks, we need in order to build a complete protein. Because we cannot make essential amino acids ourselves, we must obtain them from food. Not only that, but soy is also naturally gluten free and rich in folate, potassium and fiber.
Soybeans are U.S. grown and certified sustainable. In fact, they are the largest crop grown on U.S. soil and 97% of U.S. farms are family owned. So not only are you supporting your health when you incorporate plant-based foods, you are taking your part in lowering your carbon footprint as well.
Soy is good for your heart
Incorporating soy into your diet may be good for your heart. In fact, soy is the only plant protein that carries a FDA heart health claim, recognizing that soy may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.
5 lunch or dinners you can make and enjoy soy
Be sure to visit SoyConnection.com for more delicious recipes made with heart healthy U.S. soy!