Tofu. Photo: iStock
Tofu. Photo: iStock

Tofu has been tested by Hong Kong’s Consumer Council to check on its safety and nutritional value and the results were varied.

The council tested 34 prepackaged and six non-prepackaged, or plate, tofu against the standards in Hong Kong, on the mainland, Taiwan, Japan and the United Nations CODEX Alimentarius Commission to evaluate its safety and nutrient content, according to the consumer watchdog release.

The main ingredients of tofu are water and soybeans. Soybeans are rich in plant protein, however the test revealed that protein content varied significantly, with the highest protein level at 9.4g/100g and the lowest at 3.6g/100g, a difference of 1.6 times.

Although tofu is generally believed to be “high-calcium,” the prepackaged samples were found to contain wide variations in the levels of calcium, ranging from 16mg/100g to 420mg/100g, a significant discrepancy of 25 times.

In general, the plate tofu fared better than the prepackaged in calcium content, with an average of 122mg/100g, almost double the calcium content of the prepackaged samples.

Claims of low-fat were also put to the test and the council found that more than 70% were not low-fat.

Nevertheless, the fat in tofu is mainly unsaturated fatty acids which can reduce the levels of bad cholesterol and total cholesterol in the body.