Tempeh – Health Benefits, Uses and Important Facts

Tempeh – Health Benefits, Uses and Important Facts

Tempeh is a fermented food made from soy that is sometimes used instead of meat. It is favoured among vegans and vegetarians as it is a full source of protein and has vitamin B12. Tempeh is said to have all nine important amino acids, which your bones and muscles need to be healthy. It is, therefore, a healthy way for almost anyone to eat more plant-based foods.



What is Tempeh?

People in Indonesia have been making this bean cake with a sweet flavour for hundreds of years. It is made from soybeans that have been partly cooked and fermented with rhizopus, a type of mould. When you look closely, you'll see that tempeh is held together by a fuzzy white substance. That is called mycelium, and it is a harmless byproduct of the fungi.


Mould in your food might not sound very good, but don't forget that mould alongside other fungi are used to make some foods, like some cheeses. Fermenting tempeh actually makes it better because:

Adds nutrients

Stimulates easy digestion


Types of Tempeh:

Tempeh (or tempe) is usually made from soybeans, but various types of beans can also be used. You can buy it already seasoned or combined with rice, wheat, or barley, for example.



Nutrition profile of tempeh:

Every serving of tempeh is full of protein and a wide range of essential minerals and vitamins.


The following nutrients can be found in a 3-ounce dose of tempeh:


15 grams of protein

9 grams of fat

162 calories

9 grams of carbohydrates

224 milligrams phosphorus

68 milligrams magnesium

1.2 milligrams manganese

0.6 milligrams copper

93 milligrams calcium

345 milligrams potassium

0.3 milligrams riboflavin

2.4 milligrams iron


Tempeh also has zinc, thiamin,  folate, and pantothenic acid, which are all very important vitamins and minerals.



How to make and eat tempeh?

When you take it out of the box, tempeh might appear a little dry and stiff. About 10 minutes of boiling can soften the cake. You might want to use a sauce to add some flavour. Subsequently you can cook it almost any way you want: cut into cubes, strips, or pieces, sautéed, or baked. But if you deep fry it, the heat may kill a number of the isoflavones.


People often use tempeh instead of meat in sandwiches, soups, and stir-fries. Additionally, it can also be used as a main course.



Health benefits of tempeh:

In this age of veganism, when people are becoming more interested in plant-based food that are cruelty-free, tempeh is a good choice. It tastes good, is good for you, and makes you feel full, which makes it a great meat replacement.


Vegans and vegetarians like to eat tempeh because it is one of the few plant-based forms of vitamin B12. Tempeh is high in protein and has all nine necessary amino acids.


By fermenting it, tempeh gets more nutrients, making it a healthier food. The process increases the amount of B vitamins and makes the protein easier to digest. Gamma-aminobutyric acid that has a calming effect on the mind, is also made by this process.


It's a prebiotic food that helps the good bacteria in your gut system grow. The health benefits of tempeh are are following:


  1. Improve your blood
  2. Bringing down your blood pressure
  3. Keep your heart safe.
  4. Improve insulin resistance
  5. Lessen pain and swelling
  6. Help menopause hot flashes go away
  7. Help bones stay healthy


Soybeans are one of the best forms of protein that come from plants. Vegans and vegetarians who eat tempeh regularly can meet all of their nutritional needs because it has all nine important amino acids.


Tempeh is good for your heart because it has vitamin B12, which is a key micronutrient, which keeps heart diseases away. It also has something called isoflavones in it that helps lower cholesterol.


Since tempeh is a product of fermentation, it is good for the health of your gut system. It keeps the good bacteria in your gut healthy. The prebiotic food helps make short-chain fatty acids that stimulate the immune system, lower inflammation, and even fight cancer.


Is tempeh safe?

There are different ideas about what soy foods do to your body. Scientists used to believe that soy could cause breast cancer. But more research has shown that isn't the case. Moderate amounts of soy are still considered healthy.



Who should not eat it?

If you are allergic to soy, you shouldn't eat tempeh.


Some people worry that soy might change how your thyroid functions or how well your thyroid medicine works. If you have a thyroid problem, you should talk to your doctor before consuming tempeh or any other soy products.


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