Three Soy milk alternatives you should buy! :買いたい豆乳のトップ3位!

Have you ever stood in front of the milk aisle in the supermarket, staring, thinking, contemplating, and still couldn’t figure out which soy milk is the best one to bring back home? I’m here to help! 

After spending hours after hours in many different supermarkets and tasting soy milk from different brands, I have finally found a few of my favorites. By the way, I’m pretty a picky buyer. I don’t buy soy milk just because it is purely made of soy. I focus on taste and how easy it is to drink and to mix with other food, e.g. my beloved cereals, soup, coffee.

I know this might sound a little bit subjective, but I believe my choices are good for everyone in general. Here are the top THREE soy milk brands that I highly recommend! 🙂

1. AEON’s organic soy milk. (‘Topvalu’ is the brand) As you seen in the photo, it receives many certifications, confirming its quality despite the price. Clocks in at 50 kcal per 100 ml with 4.5 g. of protein, 3.1 g. of fat, and merely 1.3 g. of sugar. Considering protein and sugar content, it is the best choice! Moreover, the flavor is not too “soy”-milky, if you know what I mean. Very smooth texture, no strong smell, not overly sweet nor bitter, easily goes with my cereals and coffee. I’m not saying you won’t taste any soy in it; the delicious flavor is still there! And it’s UNSWEETENED, meaning low in sugar and carbs while it’s high in protein. Don’t get confused with other flavored soy milk products out there. You won’t wanna be drinking sugar.

Where to get this? Look for any supermarket with AEON sign as it has many sub-brands. I bought this at 198 yen (1000 ml carton) at the nearest super called “My Basket”, where everything is sooo cheap! (Cheaper than convenience stores!) Please check it out! More here: Top Valu information page (spelled correctly)

2. Provamel’s Unsweetened Soya milk. This soy milk is imported and thus the price is kinda high. However, once I tasted it, it’s so hard to switch to other brands. The flavor is sooo good on its own. You don’t need to add more sugar nor cocoa powder to cover the soy smell or flavor. it’s so refreshing and delicious I could just drink it as my treat.

Anddddd per 100 ml, it has:
Energy 45 kcal, Protein 3.7 g, Fat 2.2 g, Carbohydrates 2.4 g
Calorie and nutrients wise, it is not a bad choice at all. I just love this cuz of the taste and the lightness of it. Recommended!

But it can be difficult to buy. As far as I know, I found it in Meidi-ya supermarket Roppongi store (Click here for website), Precce supermarket Tokyo Midtown store, and LIMA cafe south Shinjuku store (LIMA cafe website). The latter is just behind my office tower. hehe

3. Otsuka’s Miruku no youni yasashii daizu. It’s a pretty long name. No, actually, it has the longest name ever! It literally means “soy milk that is as smooth as milk” (as in cow milk). I used to be addicted to this as well! Like, I HAD TO drink this and this only cuz I wasn’t well adjusted to the taste of soymilk yet. And this is precisely the main selling point of this soy milk. Its texture is so smooth, the flavor so sweet and tasty and refreshing. You can just drink it on its own. On the package, the brand emphasizes high content of calcium, isoflavone, and protein. 

Per 100 ml, it contains…
Energy 47.5 kcal, Protein 3.2 g., Fat 2.35 g., Carbohydrates 2.8 g.
Not bad for a tasty non-soy-milky choice! It comes with 2 sizes: 950 ml and 200 ml. 
Can be found easiest in most of the convenient stores and supermarkets, especially for the smaller alternative (which is usually seen in many other flavors such as strawberry, green tea, banana, grape,…but I do not recommend the flavor types).

However, when I looked closely at its label, I got discouraged a little bit when the second ingredient on the ingredients list following “soy” is “mizu ame” (syrup) and then sugar. This made me feel a bit like I was taking unnecessary sugar so I switched to other alternatives after.

ミルクのようにやさしいダイズHope you all get some good ideas of what to grab next time! In the end, I encourage you to try for yourself if you find any brand interesting! How to choose from this list: Price and quality wise, choose the first one. Self-reward/high quality, go for the second one. Not so familiar with soy milk? go for the third one. 

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Japanese version of Atkins Diet:「ばあさまたちにとおなし」という糖質制限ダイエット

I watched this TV program last night about two different approaches of dieting. One is to refrain from carbs and the other is to limit the calorie intake. Doctors who have tried, succeeded, and became to the advocates for either of the methods were invited to the show and discussed the advantages and the right way to proceed on each diet plan. 

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The calorie limitation approach as we know it is that we must eat within certain limited number of calories per day. But in this Japanese version, what’s interesting this that the doctor started by asking patients to find out how many calories to be cut from their normal one-day calorie intake instead of limiting whatever they’re taking to fit the ideal daily calories, which would be a lot harder to do and maintain.

The formula to find out how much calories you should cut from your daily intake to start losing weight is:
Female >> (body fat% – 20) / 60 x 30 x your body weight
Male >> (body fat% – 10) / 70 x 30 x your body weight 

Now let’s talk about the Japanese version of Atkins Diet, that is to cut carbs and anything that includes sugar but free to eat any protein and fat. The doctors kinda said that the merits are that you are not bounded by the numbers and calculation anymore, rather you just have to learn to remember which food has high sugar or carbs. For me, I think it’s a lot more limiting than the calorie count method, which is a lot easier especially in Japan that most products have calories on the labels. 

The Japanese Atkins Diet doctor introduced an easy way to remember which products that are ALLOWED during the diet period:「ばあさまたちにとおなし」or “Ba-a-sa-ma-ta-chi-ni-to-o-na-shi”. The letters represent the foods that you can feel free to combine and mix up according to your imagination lol Let’s go one by one! 

ば:バター; Ba – Butter
あ:アボカド; A – Avocado
さ:さかな; Sa – Fish
ま:マヨネーズ; Ma- Mayonnaise 
た:たまご; Ta – egg
ち:チーズ; Chi – Cheese
に:肉; Ni – Meat
と:とうふ; To – Tofu
お:オリーブオイル; O – Olive oil
な:納豆; Na – Nattou (fermented soybeans)
し:焼酎(しょうちゅう); Shi – Shouchuu or distilled spirit

I found this a bit weird at first and then I tried to understand the logic. The doctor suggested that you can take as much as you want from the items above BUT must be extremely careful not to take any form of carbs, and yes that includes salad dressings of any kind, be it super clear and non-oil stuff. Whenever you need to go to a family restaurant (like Gasto or Saizeria) be sure to order a la carte (単品)plus lots of SMALL side dishes that are all low in carbs (no potato salad whatsoever) and NO RICE. What’s more apart from rice, you cannot take any noodles like udon, soba, and ramen. You must say goodbye to bread, fruity yogurt, and even low-fat milk. Soymilk is said to be better because it contains small amount of carbs compared to low fat or non-fat milk that substitutes the fat with sugar. Fruits and veggies also need to be monitored. For instance, you can’t go eat curry rice though take off the rice because you can’t take potato or carrot, nor the curry roux. Curry is really a no-no meal lol. If you like Katsu-don, you can take off the rice, then cut off one half of the side with breadcrumb and enjoy the other side. That should give you enough satisfaction, the doctor said. If you like to go to Izakaya for drinking, then order the Shouchuu!! You prolly get by the night without taking tons of sugar with you.

There are 3 levels of this approach, though, so don’t be alarmed yet. First is the “super” level meaning you cut carbs from ALL 3 meals. The second is the “Standard” level, meaning you cut carbs only 2 meals, maybe breakfast and dinner as you might need to go out for lunch with your co-workers. The last is the easiest and most convenient level that allows you to cut carbs only one meal a day, usually during dinner. If you wanna see results fast, go with the super. But be prepared because if you are in Japan, a country where RICE is the MAIN thing in each meal, this might require you to totally change the cultural way of eating. 

Although I’m always conscious of calories, I never thought of numbers of carbs before. I used to think that avoiding fat is the safest way; now I changed my mind. I kinda wanna try taking on more protein and healthy fat than carbs and see if this can actually slim down my body. That’s gonna be my challenge for a week! 😉