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Today the humble soybean has emerged as the closest thing there is to a super-food. Health experts (and food companies) have proclaimed soy a miracle bean and promoted it as the key to maximum longevity and disease prevention.


It's said to play a positive role in preventing heart disease, cancer and osteoporosis, as well as helping to relieve menopausal symptoms.


One study even suggests that eating soy might reduce hair loss. But is soy another food fad, or is it the magic bean of the 21st century?


Super bean

It wasn't until the Zhou Dynasty (1100-256 B.C.) that humans consumed soybeans, when the Chinese developed a fermentation process to make soybean paste, best known today as miso.


In the second century B.C. the Chinese discovered that a puree of cooked soybeans could be precipitated with calcium sulfate or magnesium sulfate to make a smooth pale curd -- tofu. Natto, another popular fermented soy food, entered the Japanese diet in Japan between 1,000 and 1,800 A.D.


In the West, researchers really stood up and took note when they studied populations where soy was a regular part of the diet, and found that it may be protective against certain diseases.


Whole soybeans are the edible seed of the soybean plant (from the family Fabaceae). Soybeans mature in their pod, ripening into dry, hard beans.


Most soybeans are yellow, but there are also brown and black varieties. The word soy is derived from the Japanese word shoyu (soy sauce), and if you're in England you'll see soy referred to as soya.


Soybeans have been called the "meat without bones" and the "cow of China" as they're a perfect plant-based protein, meaning they contain all the essential amino acids that your body can't produce.


Full Story - http://www.stophairlossnow.co.uk/News/News414.htm

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