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About Edamame

Edamame is basically baby soybeans, harvested before they are mature and the seeds are hardened.

Soybeans are usually left to ripen and harden when they are still on the vines. In some regions, like Southeast Asia, they are harvested when they are ripe but not yet hardened. The Japanese word edamame means twig beans, because the soybeans are harvested along with the twigs. They are boiled with salt and other condiments and served, and they are soft, tender and very tasty. These beans can also be parboiled and frozen so they stay fresh for longer.

Edamame is eaten steamed or boiled, in salads, soups and other dishes. It is also a very popular snack that can be served with salt or soy sauce. It is sometimes used for desserts too, especially in Japan.

Nutritional Value of Edamame

Soybeans are considered to be among the most nutritious foods in the world. They are rich in fiber, protein, carbohydrates and omega fatty acids.

Compared to other soy products, edamame have more protein, more sucrose and abscisic acid, which is a plant hormone.

A portion of 100 grams of frozen and prepared edamame contains 122 calories, 11 grams of protein, 10 grams of carbohydrates, 5 grams of dietary fiber, 5 grams of fat and 2 grams of sugar.

As for the vitamins and minerals, 100 grams of edamame provide 6.1 milligrams of vitamin C, 0.2 milligrams of vitamin B1, 0.2 milligrams of vitamin B2, 0.9 milligrams of vitamin B3, 0.7 milligrams of vitamin E, 331 micrograms of folate, 26.7 micrograms of vitamin K, 63 milligrams of calcium, 463 milligrams of potassium, 170 milligrams of phosphorus, 64 milligrams of magnesium and 2.3 milligrams of iron.

Health Benefits of Edamame

Even if it may not be as popular and as widely used as regular soybeans, edamame is equally nutritious, if not more. Being packed with low calorie protein, it is one of the best sources of protein for vegetarians. It contains important amino acids that the body cannot produce and need to be taken from food.

Edamame is rich in dietary fiber. This helps with gastrointestinal problems, especially with constipation; it helps with weight loss and lowers cholesterol levels.

The fats found in edamame are healthy and it is believed that they help in prevention of heart disease. In addition, edamame contains isoflavones that help with high cholesterol and promotes normal bone density.

Considering all the benefits and great nutritional value of this soy product, it is safe to say that everyone should try edamame and include in their diet more often.

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