I have been talking about my weight loss journey, my experience of incorporating soy proteins in my diet and eating healthy, since the last few months. In this post, I am going to talk about the importance of soy proteins for children. I live in a joint family of 18 members and our youngest family member is 4 years old and the oldest is 68 years old. We all have a varied diet and different tastes. One important ingredient in all our diets is soy.
For the younger kids in the house, my mom tries to cook protein-rich meals for their overall growth. The Institute of medicines says that children up to the age of 13 require at least 34 grams of protein. Teenage girls (14 to 18 years old) require 46 grams of proteins. Whereas teenage boys (14 to 18 years) require 52 grams of protein. If the children are vegetarian, eggs, which are considered to be a good source of protein, cannot be incorporated into their diets.
Soybeans contain no cholesterol and very low saturated fats. Soybean contains all the right amino acids that are essential for our body and are a good source of iron, Vitamin B, fibre and calcium. This makes soybeans very important for a child’s growth. Being bland in taste, it is easy to incorporate soy and soy proteins in many recipes. My mother makes silken tofu bhurji, pancakes with soy protein powder and soybean manchurian to ensure all the kids in the house enjoy their meals and have all the health benefits of soy proteins.
What do experts have to say about soy proteins for children?
We spoke to Kejal Sheth, Nutritionist, Weight Management and Founder of Nutrivity.in on the benefits of soy proteins for children. This is what she had to say “Soy is a rich source of protein which means that like meat it has all the amino acids our body needs to be abundant in proteins. Some soy foods like edamame are filled with iron and fibre. Soy foods are very nutritious while adding great variety to your child’s diet.
Children love their taste and it is considered a great alternative to meat and dairy products. Introducing soy early in your child’s diet may help them develop healthy eating habits for a lifetime. Food preferences developed in the infant and toddler years stay with the child throughout childhood, adolescence and adult years. Including soy into meals helps decrease fat, cholesterol, and calories, and increase fiber, while still providing children with key vitamins and minerals.”
It is not only a healthy alternative in children’s diet; it also prevents the development of certain adult diseases. Studies of soy in children and adolescents have shown that soy eases constipation and lowers high cholesterol. It may even decrease the risk of breast cancer later in life. Soy products are lactose-free which makes them a great variant for children who are lactose intolerant.”
Some great ideas given by Kejal Sheth to make some healthy recipes for children
- Make meatless pizzas using soy pepperoni or soy sausage crumbles
- Churn up protein-rich smoothies with tofu, soy milk and a variety of fruits.
- Give your child a healthy mix of trail by using honey roasted soy nuts and chocolate covered soy nuts with whole grain cereal, dried fruits and raisins.
- Add fortified soy milk containing calcium, vitamin A, vitamin D, and high-quality protein to the diets of children who do not drink cow’s milk. It has almost 50 fewer calories than whole milk per serving.
- In place of peanut butter, spread soy nut butter on whole wheat bread.
- Serve soy nuggets in place of chicken nuggets as they save a lot of calories.
- On the grill, make soy burgers instead of regular hamburgers to add fibre and reduce calories.
I hope you enjoyed reading this post on the importance of soy proteins for children and the tips shared by nutritionist Kejal Sheth. Do let me know how you use soy proteins for children in your house.