What is Calcium-Fortified Soy Milk?
Soy milk is plant-based milk derived from the soybean, a legume that originates from East Asia. It has a high content of protein and dietary fiber but only a small amount of fat, making it ideal for items like smoothies.
The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for adults of 1000 milligrams per day is provided through foods that are rich in calcium, such as milk and dairy products, as well as leafy greens, sardines, and nuts.
Related Post: Calcium Rich Foods And Fruits
Sufficient amounts of calcium in your diet can help to prevent many health problems associated with aging such as brittle bones and heat sensitivity. This can be attributed to the fact that minerals such as calcium play an important role in the function of multiple organs and systems.
Calcium-fortified soy milk is rich in vitamins. It is a good substitute for cow’s milk because it is lactose-free.
Vegan soy milk is available at any grocery and offers numerous advantages over cows’ milk.
While you can certainly make it at home, the results will likely be disappointing compared to a commercial version. That’s because when soybeans are cooked, a certain protein becomes denatured and gives the resultant milk an odd flavor. Most commercial brands use a special process to remove this denatured protein, which results in much better tasting milk than you can make at home.
Health Benefits Of Soy Milk
Soy milk has plenty of protein and is much lower in saturated fat than cow’s milk. It’s far more nutritious than almond milk, and often contains six or seven times as much protein. You can purchase soy milk in aseptic shelf-stable packaging, or in cartons alongside cow’s milk in your grocery store.
It’s a fantastic source of protein. A typical brand carries a whopping seven grams of protein per cup, which compares to one gram for many rice or almond milk, and zero grams for coconut milk.
Don’t believe the dairy industry’s claims that their product is a uniquely good source of calcium. Many soy milk brands are calcium-fortified and offer even more calcium per serving than cows’ milk.
Consider choosing an unsweetened brand—you’ll get a pleasant, nutty flavor without a big dose of sugar. Soy milk is a well-known dairy milk replacement, but it’s not just a substitute ingredient. Soy milk can be a worthwhile addition to your diet on its own. This healthy, flavorful beverage first came about as a waste product on the way to making tofu. Today, soy milk can be found around the country as a lactose-free dairy substitute with health benefits that are all its own.
The vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants in soy milk can provide important health benefits. For example, the forms of vitamin B found in soy milk are important for helping your body maintain your nerve cells and DNA. They can also help you avoid certain forms of anemia, which can prevent tiredness and fatigue.
Soy milk is also high in protein. The protein in soy milk is healthy, plant-based, and can help support healthy muscles and organs.
In addition, soy milk can provide other health benefits like:
Soy milk is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are “healthy” fats that your body cannot form on its own. Omega-3 fatty acids are linked to a reduced risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Soy milk is still being studied for its effect on these diseases, but soy in general is one of the best non-animal sources of omega-3 fatty acids.
Improved Heart HealthSoy milk can also help support your cardiovascular system. Soy milk is an excellent source of potassium, whether or not it has been fortified. Potassium is deeply connected to maintaining lower blood pressure and a regular pulse. Furthermore, soy milk has been linked to lower cholesterol levels, especially in people who have high cholesterol.
Reduced Symptoms of Menopause Soy milk contains isoflavones, which are a class of chemicals known as “phytoestrogens.” There is of lavones react in the body like a weak form of estrogen. Because of that, studies have shown that consuming soy milk and other soy products might help reduce the symptoms of menopause, such as hot flashes.
Most soy milk found in supermarkets and health food stores is fortified with added nutrients. This makes fortified soy milk a great source of calcium, which is the most common mineral in your body. Consuming enough calcium can help strengthen your bones and reduce your risk of osteoporosis. Soy milk is also an excellent source of:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin B
Nutrients Per Serving
A one-cup serving of soy milk contains:
- Calories: 100
- Protein: 7 grams
- Fat: 4 grams
- Carbohydrates: 8 grams
- Fiber: 1 gram
- Sugar: 6 grams
Things To Watch Out For
While is of lavones can help reduce symptoms of menopause, they may also have negative effects. More research is needed, but some studies point towards isoflavones being linked to reduced thyroid function.
These isoflavones may affect how your body produces thyroid hormones. However, these studies are still inconclusive and need further support. As long as you consume enough iodine in your daily diet, there are no signs that drinking soy milk will significantly affect your thyroid function.
Anyone with an allergy to soy products should avoid drinking soy milk. Soy milk used in recipes can also trigger allergic reactions, so it’s best to avoid soy milk entirely if a member of your household has soy allergies.
How To Add Soy Milk To Your Diet
Soy milk can be found in grocery stores, health food stores, and restaurants around the country. You can also make soy milk at home.
Soak ten ounces of soybeans in water overnight. Then boil these beans in twelve cups of water for ten minutes. Blend the water and soybeans together until smooth, then simmer for another forty minutes.
If you like, you can add a pinch of salt or sugar to taste. When you finish simmering the soybeans, strain the mixture through cheesecloth to remove solids. You can store the soymilk for up to a week — about as long as dairy milk lasts.
Here are some ways you can include soy milk in your diet:
- Add soy milk to a smoothie
- Use soy milk in your coffee
- Eat cereal with soy milk
- Use soy milk in baked goods
- Make a bechamel sauce with soy milk
- Use soy milk in curry
Making Soy Milk From Scratch
What about homemade soy milk? You can certainly make some, and very cheaply at that, but you might not like the results. That’s because commercial producers use a secret weapon that you can’t buy for your home kitchen—they own expensive equipment designed to extract denatured proteins.
The problem here is that to make soy milk you’ve got to boil the soybeans until they’re soft. In doing this, some of the protein denatures. This denatured protein imparts a funny flavor to the milk that is, to put it kindly, an acquired taste.
Throughout Asia, homemade soy milk has been widely consumed for centuries. Nearly everyone who grew up drinking the stuff thinks it tastes just fine. In fact, in any Asian grocery, you can purchase traditional, locally-made soy milk that hasn’t had the denatured protein removed.
This stuff has never caught on in Western cultures owing to its taste. But if you can remove the denatured protein—which every major Western soy milk producer does—you’ll have something that virtually everybody agrees is delicious.
It’s not that you shouldn’t try making soy milk—only that you shouldn’t expect your stuff to taste anything like the top brands. So before you rush out to buy an electric soy milk maker, sample the traditional Asian-style stuff.
You can buy this at most Asian groceries. Local soy milk is usually unsweetened and packaged in plastic gallon-sized jugs, and it tastes nothing like mass-market brands. If you don’t like how it tastes, you probably won’t be satisfied by your homemade version either.
Recipe: Homemade Soy Milk
Learning how to make soy milk is fun and enriching and a lot easier than you might think. This preservative-free and additive-free homemade soy milk work great for drinking, culturing, or making tofu.
The leftover fiber is called okara, or u no hara, and can be dried or frozen for use in cooking, or as fertilizer. Soy milk made at home has a slightly grassy flavor compared to soy milk bought commercially. Here’s exactly how to make soy milk at home!
Supplies For Making Soy Milk:
- Container for soaking beans – You can use any container that holds 4 or more cups, but we like to use 32 oz. Mason Jars.
- Blender – As long as the beans are well-soaked, most blenders will work perfectly fine.
- Strainer – Cheesecloth, like our fine-meshed Butter Muslin Cheesecloth, works fine, but we haven’t found anything more convenient than these Organic Cotton Nut Milk Bags.
- Heavy-bottom Pan – A thin pan doesn’t disperse heat as evenly and can lead to scorching.
Soy milk is a great alternative to animal milk. It’s delicious, can be made at home affordably and easily, and it’s so simple. Just soybeans and water. Of course, we like to do all kinds of fun things with our soy milk like make dairy-free yogurt or tofu, but it’s also fantastic just to drink.
If you like, you can add various things to your soy milk like a little sugar, some agave nectar, a pinch of salt, or even something a little more interesting like cinnamon or cocoa. You are going to want to use yellow soybeans as they make the best soy milk.
- ½ cup soybeans
- 2-3 cups of water for soaking
- 4 cups of water for blending
- Sugar to taste (optional)
- Soak soybeans in 2-3 cups of water overnight. This will soften the soybeans and get them ready for blending.
- Discard water and rinse soybeans. We want to get rid of any of the dirt or contaminants that were on the beans themselves.
- Remove skins as best you can. You can rub the beans by hand while they’re underwater. The released skins will float to the top and can be skimmed off. Don’t worry if you can’t get them all. Blending the beans will release all that soy nutrition.
- Add soybeans and 4 cups of water to a blender.
- Blend until smooth. This step exposes the entire bean to the water, ensuring we wring all the nutrition we can from these beans for our homemade soy milk.
- Strain the blended mixture using cheesecloth or a nut milk bag. Our testing has led us to these organic cotton nut milk bags. They’re a great balance of tightly woven cloth that keeps the pulp inside, porous enough to let the milk flow freely, tough enough to withstand multiple milkings, and with a tie-close top that prevents blowouts.
- Heat the strained milk in a heavy-bottom pan to 212ºF (100ºC). Hold this temperature for 20 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent sticking. Cool the milk and store. This is an important step since, as a legume, soy can’t be consumed raw.
- Refrigerate for up to 4 days.
Homemade soy milk is a great alternative to milk for making yogurt. You can also use it for making homemade tofu or in non-dairy yogurt recipes.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Fortified soy means that the soy has been enriched with additional vitamins and minerals. This is done in order to make up for the fact that soy is a plant-based food and therefore does not contain all of the essential nutrients that humans need to survive.
Yes, soy milk is a good source of calcium. It has about the same amount of calcium as cow’s milk.
There are many brands of soy milk that are fortified with B12, but it’s important to check the label to be sure. Some popular brands that fortify their soy milk with B12 include Silk, So Delicious, and Eden Foods.