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Calories in Tofu

Submitted by Nick on March 28, 2011

How Many Calories in Tofu? 

Tofu is known to be a protein-packed soy product. A food item used extensively in Asian cuisines, tofu has quickly become a favorite all over the world due to the high nutritional valueof tofu. Tofu is not only packed with proteins but is also considered an excellent food item for those who are on a diet. Tofu is bland and can quickly absorb the flavors and aromas of other ingredients of the various preparations it is used in, making it a useful item for preparing many different food items. Tofu is essentially a Chinese food made from soybean milk.

It is prepared like cottage cheese and is also sold in rectangular blocks resembling cottage cheese. In many Asian countries, tofu is considered a staple food.

When considering the tofu calories, it is important to also consider the kind of tofu.

The calories in tofu which is soft, that is freshly made from the soybean milk curds, is different from the calories in a tofu stir fry, which is the kind of tofu most people consume. The calories in silken tofu, or the soft, fresh tofu, are about 176, per 250 g or 1 cup of tofu. The soft, uncooked tofu contains about 10.6 g of fat, making up of 16% of the RDA.

Of the total fat in tofu,2.2 g is saturated fat, 4.6 g is polyunsaturated fat, and 3 g is the monounsaturated fat. Additionally, calories in tofu account for 0% cholesterol, 30 mg sodium, 4.2 g carbohydrates, and 20.6 g proteins. Apart from fats, carbohydrates, proteins and sodium, tofu also contains high amounts of calcium and iron.

The calories in tofu cream cheese are considerably higher. In two tablespoons of tofu cream cheese, there are about 120 calories, half of which come from fats. Still, this is very low as compared to cream cheese made from milk. The low amount of calories in tofu makes it an excellent ingredient for low fat or diet foods. Tofu cream cheese is often used in diet recipes. The calories in baked tofu are similar to those in fresh tofu as no additional oils are used. Baked tofu, however, is a little harder than fresh tofu. The calories in tofu soup and other foods containing tofu are not standardized and are based on the other ingredients as well as the cooking method employed. However, most recipes using tofu as the main ingredient are low in calories and therefore ideally used as nonfat foods.

Tofu Health Benefits

Tofu is considered an excellent health promoting food, ideal for those who are on a diet. The low amount of calories in tofu makes it an ideal ingredient for a lot of low fat foods. Low calorie tofu recipes can be easily procured from any healthy foods cookbooks or websites. Tofu, apart from being a low calorie food, is also an excellent source of proteins. Tofu nutrition is known to promote weight loss for those who are following a low carbohydrate, high protein diet. Tofu is also considered a vegetarian substitute for white meats, due to its low calories, high protein, and high iron content. Almost all the health benefits of soybeans are found in tofu as well.

Tofu is rich in soy proteins, which can lower the bad cholesterol or the LDL by 30%. It is therefore great for your heart. Tofu is also known to be rich in minerals and therefore, increases the efficiency of the body. It is high in energy but low in fat and has been found to be especially beneficial during menopause. Tofu also consists of small quantities of selenium, an antioxidant, and omega 3-fatty acids, both of which are anti-cancer and promote heart health.

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