This post is the start of an ongoing series of questions about eating a plant-based diet from my readers. If you have a question that you’d like me to answer, please email me at email@example.com. I read every question and answer them personally so if you feel stuck or are struggling with something or feel overwhelmed, I’d love to help you!
If you have a question about a medical condition, I want to emphasize that I am not a medical doctor and I would suggest, if you’re not getting the help you seek from your current doctor, that you look into this site, Plant-Based Doctors, to see if you can find someone who would more likely help your deeper issues from a plant-based diet perspective.
That said, I have read a lot about what a plant-based diet and lifestyle can do for your health so I will try to answer your questions to the best of my knowledge.
You are such an inspiration to me, and your recipes never fail to satisfy! It is evident that you are passionate about plant-based eating and teaching others how to eat better and live longer.
Our plant-based journey began to remove plaque and lower cholesterol in my husband and is working well! I do however have a question. He still is concerned about our protein intake. I incorporate tofu and tempeh into our meals a couple of times a week.
Is that necessary? Do we need to be concerned about soy products? We have many friends who say soy is unhealthy. Is there research we can use to educate them and ourselves? Also, the new products like Beyond Burger and Tofurkey….. are they good for you? Praying blessings for you in the new year and grateful heart for all you do.
You are so kind to let me know how you feel and it’s very much appreciated! 💗
I’m glad to hear that a plant-based diet is working for you and your husband! I understand your concerns so let me see if I can help. I assume your hushed is concerned that you’re not getting enough protein.
ARE WE GETTING ENOUGH PROTEIN
If you haven’t seen it, here’s my article, “Am I Getting Protein on a Plant-Based Diet?” Basically, it depends on your age. If you’re 65 years old or older, you may need more protein than if you’re younger.
You can calculate your percentage by using the calculator in the link in the article.
I do think it’s a good idea to incorporate tofu, tempeh, and legumes into your diet plan and there shouldn’t be any fears about eating soy as, in most cases, it’s quite healthy. I also have an article on that topic, “The Safety of Soy.”
Should We Be Concerned About Soy
I know a lot of people are misinformed about soy’s benefits but they continue to eat dairy which comes with its own cow hormones and unhealthy fats so you’re on the right path for health. It’s good to be armed with some responses, though, when people say it’s unhealthy.
Here’s my article about “The Safty of Soy,” which should clear up your concerns.
As for some of the new products on the market like Beyond Burger and Tofurkey, I would say that it helps to become a label reader. Although these products can help people make the transition from eating meat, they are not in the zone we want with a plant-based diet because they usually are too high in fat and have too processed.
In addition, you should stay away from soy protein isolate, or sometimes called texturized vegetable protein (TVP) or texturized soy protein (TSP).
Here’s what Dr. Joel Fuhrman has to say about it,
“Unnaturally concentrated, “isolated” soy protein, such as that found in protein powders and meat substitutes, are particularly problematic.
The essential amino acid profile of soy is the most “complete,” plant protein, meaning the closest to animal protein, as it is the amino acid profile of animal protein that sparks IGF-1 production.
It is when soy is processed and concentrated as “isolated” soy protein, that it can have similar negative hormonal effects to animal proteins, which does not occur with more natural forms of soy such as tofu, tempeh and soybeans.”
Eating the least process soy products such as soy milk, tofu and tempeh are great choices although I know some soy milk have some additives, I love Trader Joe’s Brand and Westsoy because they only have soybeans and water as ingredients.
I hope this helps you navigate these concerns a little better.