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tofu vs. beans


timetide
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I eat beans more often than tofu. Most of the time I cook my own (though I usually have a can or two on hand for "emergencies") . . . a wide variety including azuki, garbanzo, black, pinto beans and red lentils. Eventually I'd like to get into sprouting them. Partly I like that beans are "less processed" than tofu.

 

Tofu I eat about once a week . . . (and probably tempeh once a week).

 

So my question to people is, what do you see as advantages / disadvantages of tofu vs. beans as a protein source?

 

I'm reasonable well read on the soy/estrogen debate and recognize that some tofu is calcium-fortified . . . anything else I shoud be considering in my decision-making process?

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Advantages of legumes:

- cheaper than tofu and cheap over all

- very healthy and theraputic fiber

- large variety of tastes and textures

- all sorts of minerals, vitamins, phytochemicals

- more filling for fewer calories

- low fat

 

Advantages of tofu

- easier to digest

- much less if any flatuence

- higher quality protein

- less filling easier to eat more of

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I also feel a disadvantage to too much tofu is the bloating feel it will give. I prefer Seitan over tofu and its so easy to make and has so many uses. But I am with you on the beans > tofu.

 

For me my order of proteins most taken in would have to be:

 

Beans

Seitan

Tofu

Tempeh

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Advantages of tofu

 

- higher quality protein

 

Could you clarify what you mean by higher quality protein in tofu vs beans? (Is it more than the ratio of protein to calories?)

 

That isn't what I meant, but it is *likely* true.

 

Soybeans, which tofu is made out of, has protein with a particular mixture of amino acids that makes it a more complete and usable protein than beans - without complementing.

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You also lose out on resistant starch if you focus too much on tofu. http://chetday.com/beansfightdiabetes2.htm

 

Resistant starch, like fiber, is mostly non-caloric. Beans and other legumes are actually far lower in calories than they appear. If you were to calculate the protein percentage of many legumes, subtracting fiber and resistant starch calories, some may rank at over 50% protein.

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You also lose out on resistant starch if you focus too much on tofu. http://chetday.com/beansfightdiabetes2.htm

 

Resistant starch, like fiber, is mostly non-caloric. Beans and other legumes are actually far lower in calories than they appear. If you were to calculate the protein percentage of many legumes, subtracting fiber and resistant starch calories, some may rank at over 50% protein.

 

 

Do you know that to be fact? I had that same question about the true calorie amount becasue like a third of the carbs in beans is Fiber which is not digested and not used for fuel. But then i asked Dr. McDougall and he said that the Fiber doesn't count toward the total calories you read on a label.

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You also lose out on resistant starch if you focus too much on tofu. http://chetday.com/beansfightdiabetes2.htm

 

Resistant starch, like fiber, is mostly non-caloric. Beans and other legumes are actually far lower in calories than they appear. If you were to calculate the protein percentage of many legumes, subtracting fiber and resistant starch calories, some may rank at over 50% protein.

 

 

Do you know that to be fact? I had that same question about the true calorie amount becasue like a third of the carbs in beans is Fiber which is not digested and not used for fuel. But then i asked Dr. McDougall and he said that the Fiber doesn't count toward the total calories you read on a label.

 

It depends on what you are looking at for the calories. For example, nutritiondata.com does not list the calories by difference. If you add up the total carbs (not carbs by difference), fats and protein, it will equal the calories they show. You can then subtract the fiber calories. On most packages of dried legumes, the calories are really low and seem to reflect the fiber difference. I used to be so confused as to why some packages of dried peas listed a tiny amount of calories, while other listed a much larger number. This seems to explain why.

 

Just try it with Lentils

 

If you want to really get into it, you can look up the percentage of resistant starch in lentils, subtract it from the total carbs, subtract the fiber, then figure out the true caloric impact.

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I eat beans more often than tofu. Most of the time I cook my own (though I usually have a can or two on hand for "emergencies") . . . a wide variety including azuki, garbanzo, black, pinto beans and red lentils. Eventually I'd like to get into sprouting them. Partly I like that beans are "less processed" than tofu.

 

Tofu I eat about once a week . . . (and probably tempeh once a week).

 

So my question to people is, what do you see as advantages / disadvantages of tofu vs. beans as a protein source?

 

I'm reasonable well read on the soy/estrogen debate and recognize that some tofu is calcium-fortified . . . anything else I shoud be considering in my decision-making process?

 

As long as that's what you want to be doing, it's fine. I eat a lot of beans and lentils too. More fiber, vitamins, minerals, great taste.

 

As for the protein quality, if you're getting enough of it, the quality doesn't matter much. The difference is too small to be noticed in the real world, so I wouldn't overcomplicate things and focus more on training.

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There is an article from Jack Norris where he shows you in one section how much of a food you would need to meet all your amino acid recommendations (for a 140lb person) using just one food. Kind of interesting, and illustrates xzebrasx's point. http://www.veganhealth.org/articles/protein/

 

Thanks, that's kind of what I was looking for . . . I also use VEGA and hemp protein, but was looking for some comprehensive/technical information.

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