by Ingrid Gulliksen, WSGC Staff
Here at the Juice Bar, soy protein powder is one of our most-requested nutritional additives for smoothies. Although I have prepared soy protein powder smoothies many times and have consumed them myself occasionally, I have to admit I didn’t know much about soy protein powder until I did a bit of research on the subject. Professor, pharmacist, and author Earl Mindell states that “Soy protein isolate, or isolated soy protein, is sold in the form of a powder (either plain or flavored) that contains at least 90 percent protein.”
Protein is made up of amino acids, our bodies’ “building blocks.” We all need these amino acids in order for our bodies to grow and develop and to repair and maintain our tissues. According to Brigid Treloar, author of the cookbook Healthy Soy, Cooking With Soybeans For Health And Vitality, the United States’ daily protein recommendation for adults is 50 grams. Treloar states that the Australian daily protein recommendation is calculated at 0.75 grams per kilogram of body weight for adults, and that very active adults, adolescents, and children, may require more, as much as 2 grams per kilogram of body weight per day. Unlike most plant sources of protein, soybeans provide all of the amino acids that we need. And just one heaping scoop (28 grams) of soy protein powder added to your favorite smoothie provides you with 24 grams of necessary protein, nearly half of the adult daily recommended amount.
Soy protein powder can be added to just about any blended drink, although it adapts particularly well to milk or fruit-juice based combinations. Be creative and design your own personal favorite combo! Here is a soy protein powder and fruit smoothie recipe that I particularly enjoy. To me, this has just the right balance of tanginess and sweetness—hope you’ll enjoy it too!
Vanilla Soy Protein Powder Fruit Smoothie
Makes one large or two small servings.
8 oz. fresh orange juice
1/2 cup peaches, fresh or frozen
1/2 cup pitted cherries, fresh or frozen
1 heaping scoop (28 grams) vanilla soy protein powder
Directions: Put all ingredients in blender, and blend on “high” until thoroughly mixed. Pour and enjoy!