Soybean Minutes

April Marks National Soyfoods Month

Have you used vegetable oil lately? Chances are the oil is 100 percent soybean oil!

While a large quantity of the soybeans grown in Minnesota go to livestock feed and biodiesel, soy can also be found on our grocery store shelves in foods like vegetable oil, tofu, soy milk, soy sauce, edamame and others.

To put extra importance on the value soy has in diets for both people and animals, we are proud to celebrate National Soyfoods Month throughout April.

Soy in a person’s diet provides numerous health benefits. Here are a few facts to get you started thinking about regularly incorporating soy on your plate (from Soyfoods Association of North America)Soy oil

  • Soymilk is the only dairy substitute nutritionally comparable to cow milk. It has complete, high-quality protein, is vitamin-rich, very low in saturated fat and cholesterol free.
  • Soy may help reduce the risk of coronary heart disease (CHD). Recent evidence shows around a five percent reduction of LDLC, and for every one percent reduction in LDLC there is a one to three percent reduction in CHD risk.
  • Soyfoods can help with constipation, healthy weight, and maintain athletic performance.
  • The antioxidants in soy are known to have a positive impact on antioxidant status and other aspects of health.
  • Recent studies have indicated that eating soy at an early age may help protect against some diseases later in life. For example, studies show that soy consumed during adolescence may help protect against breast cancer in adulthood.

Soybean farmers are passionate about growing a sustainable crop of soybeans that has so many health benefits and is valuable for food, oil and animal feed use. They take great care to raise soybean safely, and handle the crop with care so it can make it to the plates of people and animals across the world.

The Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council, along with the United Soybean Board, support research on soyfoods and potential benefits to continue adding value to soybeans. In fact, soybean farmers in the U.S. recently started growing a new type of soybean to produce high oleic soybean oil, a new soybean oil that allows food companies to eliminate trans fats and lower saturated fat content in foods without sacrificing flavor. This new oil can open up new market opportunities and provide different soy food options.

Biodiesel, while not a soy food, is another innovative use of soybean oil that is used to power diesel engines. And what a better way to kick off Soy Foods Month, than to feed our diesel engines a higher blend of this clean air friendly fuel in Minnesota?

The beginning of April marked the start of a second summer of B10 in every gallon of diesel sold in Minnesota. That means if you are filling up on diesel at the pump, ten percent of the fuel contains biodiesel.

So, soyfoods month is an opportunity for us to explore new options on our plates, farmers to begin planting this year’s soybean crop and Minnesota drivers to feed their vehicles a higher biodiesel blend.

If reading this post has made your mouth water for some soybean delights, check out some tasty soy food recipes this month. Bon Appetite!