Cooking with Raina: Soy Prevents Numerous Diseases

On Tuesday, March 17th Southeast Hospital Dietitian Raina Childers explained the benefits of soy in our diets as well as offered some healthy recipes.  Below is her advice as well as the recipes.

What Is Soy?

            A plant-based complete protein derived from the soy bean crop

Why Soy?

  • Low in Saturated and Trans Fats
  • Good source of complete protein without the added cholesterol         
  • Part of a heart healthy diet
  • 25g of soy protein per day may reduce the risk for coronary artery disease

Disease Prevention

            May have benefits beyond basic nutrition!
            Isoflavones have been shown to
  • reduce tumor growth 
  • induce tumor cell death
  • regulating hormone balance
            Current research suggests that Soy MAY reduce the risk for
  • prostate cancer
  • colon cancer
  • breast cancer
  • osteoporosis
Research trial shows that ingestion of soy nuts containing 25 g soy protein was associated with a decrease in hot flashes and menopausal symptoms in post- menopausal women.
Heart - healthy diet + 25 g soy protein / day = 45% decrease in hot flashes

Sources of Soy

  • Soy Milk
  • Tofu
  • Soy Nuts
  • Soy Protein Powder
  • Edemamme
  • Fortified Pasta
  • Some Breakfast Cereals

Pizza Topped with Smoked Tofu and Red Pepper


  • Toppings / Sauce
  • 1 tbsp  Olive Oil
  • 1 Garlic Clove, minced
  • 1 can (28oz) Plum Tomatoes (drained and chopped)
  • ¼ tsp Salt
  • ¼ tsp Black Pepper
  • 2 Red Bell Peppers
  • 2 c Shredded & Smoked Tofu
  • 1.5 c Shredded Mozzarella
  • 10 inch pre made pizza dough



Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic, and sauté 1 minute. Add tomatoes; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 30 minutes or until sauce is thick. Stir in 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper.
Cut bell peppers in half, length-wise; discard seeds and membranes. Place pepper halves, skin sides down, on grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 15 minutes or until blackened. Place in a zip-lock bag; seal. Let stand 15 minutes. Peel and cut into strips.
Spread 1/3 cup tomato sauce dough round, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Sprinkle 1/3 cup tofu and 1/4 cup cheese evenly over each pizza. Divide pepper strips evenly among pizzas.


8 slices

Nutrition Facts

88 calories, 2.1 g fat, 220mg sodium, 1.2g fiber, 2.1g protein, 15g carbohydrate

Refreshing Soy Fruit Smoothie


  • 1 banana
  • ½ c strawberries
  • ½ c raspberries
  • 1 c vanilla soy milk
  • ½ c soy yogurt


Blend all the fruits with the soy milk and soy yogurt until a smooth texture is formed. The fruits should provide enough of a taste to mix well with the milk and yogurt.



2 Servings

Nutritional Information

115 calories, 1.5 grams of fat, 1 mg sodium, 24.9 carbohydrates, 4.3 g fiber, 3.3 g protein

Greek Salad with Tangy Lemon Tofu Dressing


  • 3 c cucumber (2 large)
  • 2 c tomato (2 medium)
  • 1 ½ c spinach
  • 1 ½ c romaine lettuce
  • 1 c red onion
  • 1 c edemame
  • 1/3 c black olives

Dressing Ingredients

  • 1 package silken tofu
  • 2 tbsp soybean oil
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp garlic (1 clove)
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ c crumbled feta


Combine all salad ingredients in large bowl
In a blender or food processor, purée all dressing ingredients except cheese until smooth, scraping occasionally
If dressing is too thick, use pulse
Pour dressing over salad and mix until blended
Sprinkle with cheese.  


6 servings

Nutrition Analysis Per Serving

180 calories, 10 gm protein, 12 gm carbohydrates, 11 gm fat,  10 mg cholesterol, 430 mg sodium, 3 gm dietary fiber.