The Japanese word edamame literally means "twig bean". This refers to the young soybeans that are cropped together with the twig.
Edamame is also the name of a Japanese dish. This dish is prepared by adding young green soybean pods into salty boiling water.
The term edamame is used for both of them, the dish made of young green soybeans, as well as for the young green soybeans. The harvest of green soybeans or edamame beans starts when the beans become ripe, but before they start to harden. The most usual way of serving edamame is in the form of a salad, or as a healthy snack, but the beans can also sometimes be used in meals made of vegetables, or as an addition to soups.
Regardless of the form and type of preparation, edamame beans are a rich combination of nutrients which can bring many health benefits.
Edamame contain high doses of omega fatty acids, dietary fiber, proteins and carbohydrates, as well as several minerals and vitamins such as manganese, zinc, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, iron, calcium, vitamin C, vitamin B1 (thiamine), vitamin B2 (riboflavin), vitamin B3 (niacin), vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid), vitamin K.
Edamame is a very rich source of proteins and it is also very tasty. This is the reason why it is so popular and loved, especially by athletes.
Edamame is popular in all forms and this also includes dry roasted edamame. It has special benefits for vegetarians, because edamame, unlike most other plant foods, contains amino acids which are essential. This is why it is considered a source of complete proteins and, together with its many nutrients, can benefit health in many ways.
Edamame contains only fatty acids which are beneficial for health. Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids and mono and polyunsaturated acids, which are found in edamame, have all proven benefits for heart health and they all contribute to reducing the risk of heart disease.
Numerous dietary fibers, which can be found in Edamame, help lower the body cholesterol level, and consequently enforcing the health of the heart and of the entire cardiovascular system.
Soy products and edamame contain isoflavones, which also help in lowering cholesterol levels.
Soy fibers and proteins give the sensation of fullness and help in controlling hunger.
Edamame helps in maintaining muscle mass, because it is a rich source of complete protein.
Calcium is necessary for healthy growth of bones and teeth. Edamame is rich with calcium and it contributes to maintaining bone density.
Saponins and isoflavones are antioxidants found in edamame. They are helping in fight free radicals.