The king of soy proteins (2022)

Soybean has long been deemed a vital source of protein that prevented severe malnutrition among the general Chinese population when the country was suffering from a food scarcity three decades ago. In those days, soy protein was often absorbed in the form of various bean curd products.

Today, the Chinese still relish their bean curd dishes – mild or spicy – but few would regard it as a life-saving source of protein any more. Advanced processing of soybeans has given the Chinese access to a wide array of pure and more nutritious soy protein products.

Linyi Shansong Biological Products Co., Ltd., located in Linyi in the south of China’s Shandong Province, has become an important R&D and production company on the booming soy protein market both in and outside China.

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Founded in 2001, the company has embarked on an aggressive expansion in the production of soybean-based products such as soybean oil, soy protein isolates (SPI), soy oligosaccharide syrup (SOS) and soy peptide. In just a few years, it has become the largest soybean-based health food and food ingredient producer in China, and one of the largest in Asia.

Massive source of protein

Linyi Shansong’s SPI, made from defatted soy flakes, contains 90% protein and has been widely used as an ingredient in food products to improve their texture and nutritional value.

SOS, a relatively new product made from soybean whey, is a food material that enhances the growth of bifidobacteria in the intestines, and is essential to the health of intestines. SOS is non-digestible and, when ingested, will selectively stimulate favourable bifidobacteria growth in the intestines and colon, thereby improving digestion.

Soybean peptide tablets, a new product that hit the market in 2006, are said to enhance strength and relieve fatigue. The product is also believed to have a bright future in the beverage industry.

Zhang Lifeng, Chief Engineer of the company, described the company’s rapid expansion as a response to the rising demand from the increasingly-affluent Chinese, who have become ever more health and nutrition conscious.

”Following milk and vitamins, soy protein products are beginning to gain recognition in China as a health supplement,” Zhang said, adding that the demand will grow further as the awareness of soy protein nutrition improves among the population.

The Chinese Ministry of Health’s plan to promote ”two proteins” – plant and animal proteins – in food is also expected to help stimulate demand for its products. Soy protein is the only complete plant protein, which means it contains all nine essential amino acids in the right balance to meet the body’s needs, according to the US Soyfoods Directory.

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Enthusiastic consumers – and investors

Besides a robust domestic market, the company, which is listed on the Singapore Stock Exchange, has also witnessed rapid export growth, with products being sold to more than 20 countries and regions in the world, including Japan, Russia, Brazil and Southeast Asia.

Zhang believes that the company’s strong R&D capacity has given it a distinct edge, especially in the Chinese market. ”Even the closest competitor in China is some three to five years behind us,” said Zhang, who has been doing food research for over 20 years.

That success, Zhang said, did not come easily. He and his team have spent several years and millions of US dollars of investment in researching and developing new products.

Company Chief Executive Officer Li Zhuping said in a report that Soy protein products are gaining recognition in China as a health supplement. the company plans to step up its R&D efforts in improving existing products and extending the current product range to keep its market leadership.

An aggressive marketing campaign launched last year has also helped the company to boost sales of its products, especially SOS and soybean peptide, The king of soy proteins (1)which directly reach individual consumers through its own brand, Tian Song.

Some 400 specialty stores, known as Tian Song Health Bank, have been set up in major Chinese cities such as Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou. The total number of stores is likely to reach 3,000 to 5,000 in the next three years, according to Zhang.

Besides consumers, investors have also shown great enthusiasm. Its share prices have climbed several times since the company’s IPO May 2005. Company chiefs are satisfied with the complete vertically-integrated facilities that produce both upstream and downstream products. It allows the company to maximize the use of soybeans, better manage the cost, increase supply and quality of raw material, defat the soy flakes, and profit from the economies of scale.

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Environmental triumph

Li, the CEO, said his company boasts the longest soybean processing chain in the world. The company’s two production plants, in Northeast China’s Heilongjiang Province, are the country’s largest soybean production bases, and offer easy access to abundant high quality and non-genetically modified soybeans. Soybeans from Heilongjiang also have a higher protein content than most soybeans China has imported from abroad.

At its Fujin plant in Heilongjiang, oil is extracted from soybeans to make defatted soy flakes for use in the production of SPI. The extracted soybean oil is then sold to its customers for further processing into high-grade oil.

At its two other plants in Daqing of Heilongjiang and Linyi of Shandong, the company produces SPI using defatted soy flakes as raw materials. During the process, soybean whey is derived and utilized by the company with the membrane separation technology to produce SOS. ”Nothing has been wasted in the soybean processing,” Zhang Lifeng said. ”We have actually turned waste into treasure,” said CEO Li, referring to the production of SOS.

For Linyi Shansong, the production of SOS means more than just a new product; the whole process is also widely regarded as an environmental triumph. Soybean whey, a by-product in the isolation of soybean protein, is mostly discharged in China as wastewater, causing serious environmental pollution in waterways and broad public grievances.

China’s State Environmental Protection Administration, the government environment watchdog, has also lauded the SOS production process as a breakthrough in protecting the country’s fragile environment. For that environmental contribution, the company’s SOS is now exempt from all taxes.
In fact, SOS, along with SPI, has already become one of the two major revenue generators for the company.

Partner for expansionThe king of soy proteins (2)

CEO Li has expressed special confidence in the prospect for SOS and other products. ”With an annual output of 6,000 tonnes, we are now the largest SOS producer in the world. The second largest SOS producer in the world is said to have an annual output of only 800 tonnes. In five years time, our position will definitely be even stronger,” said Li, who is still in his 30s.

Li said the company will further expand its production capacity for defatted soy flakes, SPI and SOS by setting up more production lines and facilities at its plants in Linyi and Daqing to meet the rising demand.

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In fact, four Alfa Laval production lines are currently being installed in the four new workshops in the huge Linyi plant, located in the Jinluo High Technology Park, about 25 kilometres from the city centre. They are expected to be put into operation in June, said Zhang Lifeng, pointing to the four rectangular buildings several hundred metres from the roof garden of his R&D building.

The four production lines will increase the company’s annual output of soybean peptide to 20,000 tonnes. They will also bring the total number of Alfa Laval lines in the Linyi plant to 12, making the company a major client for Alfa Laval in China and the world.

Building a strategic partnership

”We have formed a strategic partnership with Alfa Laval,” said Li Zhuping, Chief Executive Officer of Linyi Shansong Biological Products Co., Ltd.

Alfa Laval also feels the same. It has greatly enjoyed a solid cooperation with the Linyi company since 2001. Today, the Linyi plant has become an extremely important reference for Alfa Laval’s work both in China and in other countries.

The first deliveries to the Linyi plant were of decanter centrifuges and were soon broadened to include separators, membranes and fluid handling equipment.

There are constantly new cooperation projects in the pipeline and future supplies are likely to include heat exchangers as well. So far Alfa Laval has installed 31 decanters, 27 high-speed separators, a large number of pumps, valves, agitators and other fluid handling equipment as well as five membrane filtration systems in the plant.

The membranes are used mainly for soy oligosaccharide production, which the company plans to expand rapidly in the coming years. This production process is also considered a novel application of Alfa Laval’s membranes which efficiently increase the overall production yield.

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Zhang Lifeng, Chief Engineer of Linyi Shansong, is the one who has been dealing with the Alfa Laval processing lines in the plant on a daily basis. He believes that Alfa Laval’s equipment is better than the Japanese equipment installed earlier, because it is more compact and has a larger capacity. ”Alfa Laval also has better after sales service, with engineers arriving on the site less than 24 hours. It has been proved in the last few years,” Zhang said.

Bob Chen, a National Sales Manager of Alfa Laval, described the cooperation between the two companies as ”excellent.” Chen, who has made frequent trips to the Linyi plant in the last few years, will soon start another trip there to finalize a new deal for membranes.

FAQs

Can I build muscle with soy protein? ›

It is well established that dietary protein intake supports muscle development and helps reduce loss of lean body mass during weight loss. Numerous studies have demonstrated the efficacy of soy protein intake for promoting fat loss while preserving muscle mass and supporting lean body mass gains.

Is soy protein good for muscle building Quora? ›

It outperforms most other proteins in every category. Soy protein is the best of the plant based proteins, but falls somewhere in the middle when it is compared to animal based proteins. This doesn't mean that one cannot be successful as a vegan. It is absolutely doable and arguably healthier.

Why is soy protein not good for you? ›

Soy protein isolates may contain more soy isoflavones, which are organic compounds that can also be considered endocrine disruptors in high amounts. Elevated levels of this kind of soy may lead to unbalanced hormone levels, which can play a factor in cancer risk.

What are the pros and cons of consuming soy as a protein? ›

Pros and Cons of Soy: Should You Add It to Your Diet?
  • Pro: Soy helps reduce cholesterol. ...
  • Pro: Soy-heavy diets reduce heart disease. ...
  • Pro: Soy increases bone mineral density. ...
  • Con: Phytoestrogens can cause concerns during pregnancy. ...
  • Con: Isoflavones can also lower thyroid function. ...
  • Related articles:

What are the side effects of soy protein? ›

The most common side effects of soy are digestive upsets, such as constipation and diarrhea. Soy may alter thyroid function in people who are deficient in iodine. Current evidence indicates that it's safe for women who have had breast cancer or who are at risk for breast cancer to eat soy foods.

Is soy protein good for hair? ›

Improve Hair Texture

Soy Protein is often used in Hair Care Products which helps in improving hair texture, strengthen it and repair damaged hair. Consume vegetarian protein powder derived from soy to make your hair look hydrated, shiny and healthy.

Do bodybuilders drink soy milk? ›

Soy Is as Good as Whey for Building Muscle: What the Science Says. Some studies have suggested soy to be as effective as whey, if not more so, in terms of its ability to promote gains in lean muscle mass.

Do bodybuilder eat soya chunks? ›

Yes, soy chunks are good for body building. You can also have soy milk whole soybean, soya paneer (tofu) in your diet for body building and strengthening.

Can I eat soya chunks daily for muscle gain? ›

Soya chunks pack numerous benefits and enable faster muscle building and metabolism. They are great for the health of bone, hair and skin health.

What does soy do to females? ›

Isoflavones are a class of phytoestrogens found naturally in soy that act like a weak estrogen in the body. Estrogen levels decrease during menopause, leading to symptoms like hot flashes. Since soy acts as a natural estrogen, it may help reduce these symptoms. Studies suggest soy's beneficial role in menopause.

Does soy cause inflammation? ›

Excess consumption of omega-6s can trigger the body to produce pro-inflammatory chemicals. These fatty acids are found in oils such corn, safflower, sunflower, grapeseed, soy, peanut, and vegetable; mayonnaise; and many salad dressings.

How much soy protein per day is safe? ›

Numerous clinical studies have found that daily consumption of up to 50 grams of soy protein is not only safe, but may also be effective in improving risk factors for chronic disease such as some types of cancer, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.

Does soy protein increase estrogen? ›

Soy isoflavones can bind to estrogen receptors in the body and cause either weak estrogenic or anti-estrogenic activity. The two major soy isoflavones are called genistein and daidzein.
...
Fermented soy foods.
Fermented soy foodsIsoflavone content (mg)Protein (g)
soy sauce, 1 tbsp0.020
3 more rows

Is pea protein or soy protein better? ›

Soy protein is a superior protein source than pea according to its bioavailability and amino acid score which is similar to casein or egg protein. However, studies show that pea protein promotes muscle protein synthesis better than soy protein despite the difference in PDCAA.

What are negatives of eating soy? ›

Why are some people concerned about soy?
  • Estrogen-mimicking effects. Soy isoflavones are often thought to mimic the female reproductive hormone estrogen. ...
  • Cancer risk. ...
  • Thyroid function. ...
  • Feminizing effects in men. ...
  • Danger to babies. ...
  • GMOs. ...
  • Antinutrients. ...
  • Digestive issues.
Aug 27, 2020

What happens if I eat too much soy? ›

Many of soy's health benefits have been linked to isoflavones—plant compounds that mimic estrogen. But animal studies suggest that eating large amounts of those estrogenic compounds might reduce fertility in women, trigger premature puberty and disrupt development of fetuses and children.

What are the benefits of soy protein? ›

You can use soy protein to help you lose weight, boost energy, or build muscle. Soy protein isolate may also manage your hormone balance and lower your risk of breast cancer, heart disease, and osteoporosis. Protein is important for your overall health and boosts development. Soy protein is 90% protein.

Does soy protein help skin? ›

Soy protein minimizes skin roughness and also skin chapping due to dry climates. Isoflavones content in Soy protects your skin against hormone-related aging like in case of menopause. Soy Protein is useful in bringing back a youthful and glowing radiance on your skin.

Can soy make you lose hair? ›

Although taking soy contents may not stop hair loss outright, having this food source in diets is always a healthy and nutritional strategy for both men and women. Adams, M. 2004. Hair loss may be slowed by adding soy milk to your diet, says new research. News Target Network.

Is soy protein good for skin? ›

Soy contains antioxidant compounds known as isoflavones, which may play an important role in reducing the appearance of skin aging. So, adding soy-heavy foods like tofu and soy milk to your diet can help diminish signs of dullness and wrinkles, creating a smoother, more youthful-looking appearance.

Which protein is best for muscle gain? ›

For Muscle Gain

Research has consistently confirmed whey protein's ability to promote muscle mass and recovery. While whey concentrate is cheaper than whey isolate, it contains less protein by weight. 24 grams of protein and 5.5 grams of BCAAs per serving.

Does soy make your balls shrink? ›

Your testicles will not shrink and you won't have massive breast enlargement" from eating soy. And if you stick with foods rich in soy as opposed to supplements, researchers say, there's no evidence of harm, unless you happen to be among the one in every 1,000 people who are allergic to soy.

Does soy affect testosterone? ›

No. Soy intake does not raise or lower a man's testosterone levels. Derived from soybeans, soy is a high-protein substance found in many foods, such as edamame, tofu, tempeh, miso, soy flour, and soy milk. It can also be found in some supplements.

Why do bodybuilders avoid soy? ›

The Estrogen Effect

They want to maximize muscle and strength and minimize fat. As a result, many bodybuilders, weight trainers, and athletes won't use soy protein foods or supplements because they fear this negative effect on body and performance.

Is Soyabean not good for male? ›

Male fertility is not affected by soy

Some experts suggest avoiding soy for men's sexual health due to the presence of phytoestrogen. They believe soy isoflavone may reduce the level of testosterone thus lowering sexual function in men.

Does soy prevent muscle growth? ›

No Significant Differences in Muscle Growth and Strength Development When Consuming Soy and Whey Protein Supplements Matched for Leucine Following a 12 Week Resistance Training Program in Men and Women: A Randomized Trial.

How much soya is safe? ›

The United States Food and Drug Administration also found adults who include at least 25g soy protein (about four servings of soy) daily in a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol can reduce LDL cholesterol by about 3–4%.

How many proteins should I eat daily? ›

According to the Dietary Reference Intake report for macronutrients, a sedentary adult should consume 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight, or 0.36 grams per pound. That means that the average sedentary man should eat about 56 grams of protein per day, and the average woman should eat about 46 grams.

Does soya chunks reduce testosterone? ›

Soy and soy-based products

Some research shows that regularly eating soy products like edamame, tofu, soy milk, and miso may cause a drop in testosterone levels. For example, one study in 35 men found that drinking soy protein isolate for 54 days resulted in decreased testosterone levels ( 3 ).

Is soy protein as good as whey? ›

Soy protein and whey protein are both dietary supplements that can help increase your total protein intake. While each form of protein has its own health benefits, for exercise, muscle building and weight loss purposes, research has shown that whey protein is superior.

Which protein is best for muscle gain? ›

For Muscle Gain

Research has consistently confirmed whey protein's ability to promote muscle mass and recovery. While whey concentrate is cheaper than whey isolate, it contains less protein by weight. 24 grams of protein and 5.5 grams of BCAAs per serving.

Is soy good for working out? ›

Additional benefits of consuming a blend of soy and dairy proteins after resistance exercise for building muscle mass has been uncovered by researchers who found that using a protein blend of soy, casein and whey post-workout prolongs the delivery of select amino acids to the muscle for an hour longer than using whey ...

Does soy affect testosterone? ›

No. Soy intake does not raise or lower a man's testosterone levels. Derived from soybeans, soy is a high-protein substance found in many foods, such as edamame, tofu, tempeh, miso, soy flour, and soy milk. It can also be found in some supplements.

How much soy protein per day is safe? ›

Numerous clinical studies have found that daily consumption of up to 50 grams of soy protein is not only safe, but may also be effective in improving risk factors for chronic disease such as some types of cancer, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.

Does soy protein increase estrogen? ›

Soy isoflavones can bind to estrogen receptors in the body and cause either weak estrogenic or anti-estrogenic activity. The two major soy isoflavones are called genistein and daidzein.
...
Fermented soy foods.
Fermented soy foodsIsoflavone content (mg)Protein (g)
soy sauce, 1 tbsp0.020
3 more rows

Which is healthier whey or soy protein? ›

Thus, the researchers concluded that daily supplementation with “whey was more effective than soy protein...in promoting gains in lean body mass.” Key takeaway: Soy protein coupled with resistance training can help you building muscle. However, research show that whey is the stronger choice.

How can I build muscle at 60? ›

Older people who do resistance training are building muscle in almost the same way younger people do.
...
Rebuilding Muscle Fiber
  1. If you can afford it, get professional help, such as a few sessions with a personal trainer. ...
  2. Always listen to your body. ...
  3. Stay hydrated. ...
  4. Eat well. ...
  5. Wear proper clothing. ...
  6. Work out with others.
Jan 4, 2017

What food has the most protein? ›

Top 10 Protein Foods
  • Fish.
  • Seafood.
  • Skinless, white-meat poultry.
  • Lean beef (including tenderloin, sirloin, eye of round) ADVERTISEMENT.
  • Skim or low-fat milk.
  • Skim or low-fat yogurt.
  • Fat-free or low-fat cheese.
  • Eggs.
Mar 6, 2022

What is the best protein for fat loss and muscle gain? ›

Whey protein is the most widely used weight loss protein today. It's one of two milk proteins, with casein being another. This protein powder by Optimum Nutrition is one of the best whey protein for weight loss. It has 24 g of protein per serving (30 g) and may help you gain muscles and lose fat.

Why do bodybuilders avoid soy? ›

The Estrogen Effect

They want to maximize muscle and strength and minimize fat. As a result, many bodybuilders, weight trainers, and athletes won't use soy protein foods or supplements because they fear this negative effect on body and performance.

Do bodybuilders eat soy? ›

Bodybuilders can eat soy as it's a high-quality protein offering all 9 essential amino acids your body needs for muscle growth and recovery. For bodybuilders following a plant-based diet, soy is especially vital to consume. Although soy has natural estrogens, research shows it won't decrease your testosterone levels.

Does soy affect muscle growth? ›

A recent study demonstrated that whey protein and soy protein supplementation results in the same amount of muscle growth and strength gains in strength-training men and women, as long as you match the leucine content of the proteins.

What is the one food that raises testosterone by 52? ›

In all honesty, out of the complete list of foods we shared above there is one above all that is known to increase testosterone by 52% and that's … fatty fish! Yes, you read that correctly. Fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel, and tuna have been proven time and time again to help your body produce more testosterone.

Which foods increase testosterone the most? ›

  • Fatty fish. Fatty fish like salmon and sardines are rich in nutrients that are important for hormonal health, such as vitamin D, zinc, and omega-3 fatty acids. ...
  • Dark, leafy greens. ...
  • Cocoa products. ...
  • Avocados. ...
  • Eggs. ...
  • Berries, cherries, and pomegranates. ...
  • Shellfish. ...
  • Other ways to boost testosterone.

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