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THE PHARMA REVIEW (OCTOBER 2008)

Soya Bean and its Health Benefits

Vimal Kumar, Md. Yaseen Khan

Abstract: Soya beans are wonderful beans. People have been cultivating and consuming soybeans for over 4000 years. It contains protein, carbohydrate and fibers as its chief constituents. Soya foods include tofu, tempeh, textured vegetable protein, miso, soya sauces, soya dairy products, soya wheat flour and soya papad. It is reported to have anti-carcinogenic, cholesterol lowering, bone strengthening anti-diabetic and many more health beneficial activities in human.
 
Introduction
Soya is an excellent source of high quality protein is low in saturated fats and is cholesterol free. Recent research has indicated soya has several beneficial effects on health in addition to its nutritional benefits. Soya beans contain high concentrations of several compounds, which have demonstrated anti-carcinogenic activity. These include isoflavonoids, protease inhibitors and phytic/ acid. The low incidence of breast and colon cancer in China and Japan has been partially attributed to the high consumption of soya products. The low incidence of menopausal symptoms in Japanese women has also been attributed to high consumption of soya. Soya diets have also been shown to reduce levels of serum cholesterol.
 
Botanical Description
Soya bean is known as Dolichos soja, Glycine gracilis, Glycine hispida, Glycine soja, Glycine ussuriensis, Soja max. An annual with erect or climbing stem reach a height of one half to six feet, densely clothed with leaves trifoliate, ovate-lanceolate, inconspicuous, borne on auxiliary racemes, white or purple to red purple, normally self pollinated; pods 3cm long in clusters of 3-5, densely hairy containing 3-4 seeds elliptical with hilum, compressed, yellow, chocolate or black.

 

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