The Real Health Benefits Of Tempeh Explained

For many vegans and vegetarians, tempeh is a game changer. Originating from Indonesia, tempeh is a fermented soy product that is often used as an alternative to meat (via WebMD). Tempeh is made from fermented soybeans that are pressed into a compact and brick-like cake. Much life tofu, tempeh is a great source of protein, especially for people who adhere to a strict plant-based diet.

While tempeh typically has a nutty flavor and a dry, chewy texture, it can be cooked and prepared in a variety of ways. Tempeh can be found in most grocery stores and is usually sold in thick blocks (via Verywell Fit). Since tempeh doesn't have much of a taste aside from its mild nuttiness, marinades are a great way to add some flavor. You can marinate tempeh overnight with teriyaki sauce, balsamic vinegar, garlic, ginger, or citrus juice to give the protein a bolder flavor. You can also sauté slices of tempeh and add them to a wrap or sandwich, or use them as meatless crumbles for meatballs or taco fillings.

Is tempeh healthy?

In addition to being a great meat substitute, tempeh is linked to a number of important health benefits. For instance, tempeh can help speed up your metabolism (via Healthline). Since tempeh is high in protein, it can stimulate thermogenesis, increasing your metabolic rate. It can also keep you feeling full longer, which may promote weight loss. 

Eating tempeh may lower your cholesterol, as well. That's because tempeh is made from soybeans, which contain soy isoflavones. Several studies have found that soy isoflavones can significantly reduce LDL cholesterol and decrease your risk of heart disease. Soy isoflavones also contain antioxidant properties, which can reduce oxidative stress and fight off disease-carrying free radicals. Furthermore, tempeh can promote bone health. Aside from protein, tempeh is also a good source of calcium, which plays a vital role in keeping your bones strong and healthy. Eating tempeh may increase bone density and prevent bone loss.