EATING tofu more than once a week cuts the risk of heart disease by nearly a fifth, research suggests.

And a monthly helping of the vegan favourite was found to reduce the risk by 12 per cent.


Tofu, made from soy beans, is high in isoflavones — a chemical thought to protect the heart.

It is popular in Asian countries where heart disease rates are low.

Chickpeas, pistachios, peanuts and other fruits are also high in isoflavones.

But US researcher Dr Qi Sun said: "The favourable association with eating tofu regularly was found primarily in young women before menopause or postmenopausal women who were not taking hormones.

"Despite these findings, I don't think tofu is by any means a magic bullet.

"Overall diet quality is still critical to consider, and tofu can be a very healthy component."

The findings come from an analysis of data from 200,000 people.

Researchers found that eating tofu more than once a week was linked with an 18 per cent lower risk of heart disease.

Dr Sun however warned this was not a direct link and just a relationship.

He warned: "Many other factors can influence the development of heart disease, including physical exercise, family history and a person's lifestyle habits.

"For example, younger women who are more physically active and get more exercise tend to follow healthier, plant-based diets that may include more isoflavone-rich foods like tofu.

"Although we have controlled for these factors, caution is recommended when interpreting these results."

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