Wheat germ vs Soy: How To Choose?

This article explains the key similarities and differences between wheat germ and soy, foods from the grains and legumes food groups. Read on to learn more about the wheat germ vs soy comparison.
Esther Bumpus, Health Writer

Written by Esther Bumpus, Health Writer. Updated on February 8, 2023.

Although wheat germ and soy belong to different food groups, while wheat germ belong is a grain, and soy belong to legumes food group, and it’s not that common to compare foods from different groups, people are often interested in these comparisons as well.

That’s why we decided to create an in-depth article that compares wheat germ and soy, their nutritional values, similarities, differences, macronutrients, and micronutrients – vitamins and minerals.

Generally speaking, foods from grains and legume food groups are both high in carbs and protein and valuable addition to a plant-based diet.

Now, let’s see how wheat germ and soy compare specifically.

Wheat germ

Wheat germ (Triticum aestivum) is a by-product of wheat milling and is derived from the inner part of the wheat kernel.

It is a good source of essential nutrients, including vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and healthy fats. It is particularly high in vitamin E, folate, and minerals like zinc, magnesium, and phosphorus.

Wheat germ is also a good source of plant-based protein, making it a valuable food for vegetarians and vegans.

It is often used as an ingredient in breakfast cereals, granolas, and baked goods or as a topping for yogurt, oatmeal, and salads. It can also be added to smoothies and other drinks for an extra boost of nutrition.

Wheat germ is an excellent source of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Vitamin B3 (Niacin), Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine), and Vitamin B9 (Folate).

It also contains Vitamin E, and Vitamin K in a small amount.


Soybeans (Glycine max) are a type of legume native to East Asia.

They are a popular ingredient in many vegan and vegetarian dishes due to their high protein and fiber content. Soy protein is one of the complete sources of a plant-based protein.

Soybeans can be enjoyed in a variety of dishes, including tofu, soy milk, and soy-based meat substitutes, and can also be ground into flour and used in baked goods such as bread and cookies.

In addition to being a tasty and nutritious food, soybeans have been shown to have many potential health benefits.

They are a good source of antioxidants and have been linked to lower cholesterol levels and improved blood sugar control.

Soybeans are also a good source of several important minerals, including iron, zinc, and magnesium.

Soy are an excellent source of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Vitamin B9 (Folate), and Vitamin K.

They also contain a good amount of Vitamin B3 (Niacin), Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), and Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine) and some Vitamin C, and Vitamin E.

Wheat germ vs Soy Nutrition

Now that we’ve described the origin, taste, and usage of these foods, we can move to the most interesting part – comparing wheat germ vs soy.

This comparison will start by comparing the caloric value of wheat germ and soy and their macronutrients and then go more in-depth by analyzing their vitamin and mineral content.

Wheat germSoy
Energy360 kcal446 kcal
Carbs51.8 g30.2 g
Sugar0.98 g7.33 g
Fiber13.2 g9.3 g
Protein23.2 g36.5 g
Fat9.72 g19.9 g
Saturated Fat1.66 g2.88 g

Wheat germ vs Soy Calories

Most calories in raw grains and legumes come from carbs. Peanuts are an exception here, but they are often considered a nut instead of a legume because of their nutritional profile.

Comparing wheat germ vs soy for weight loss, wheat germ is slightly lower in calories, with 360 calories per 100 grams, compared to 446 calories per 100 grams of soy.

However, both wheat germ and soy can and should be a part of a healthy diet, and neither one shouldn’t be avoided if you’re looking to lose weight.

Wheat germ vs Soy Protein

Legumes and most legume products, including wheat germ and soy, are important sources of plant-based protein.

Soy offer around 36% more protein than wheat germ.

Soy have 36.5 grams of protein per 100 grams, while wheat germ has 23.2 grams of protein per 100 grams.

Wheat germ vs Soy Carbs

Counting carbs can be important for some people for different reasons, including blood sugar control, weight management, or athletic performance.

It’s also important for people on a keto diet, so let’s compare the carbs content in wheat germ and soy.

The total amount of carbohydrates is around 42% higher in wheat germ than in soy. It have 51.8 grams per 100 grams, compared to 30.2 grams in soy.

There’s less sugar in wheat germ than in soy, 86% precisely.

One handful of wheat germ (28 grams) contains 0.3 grams of sugar, while the same amount of soy contains 2.1 grams.

Lastly, let’s take a look at the dietary fiber in wheat germ and soy.

Dietary fiber keeps the digestive system healthy and helps with weight management by promoting a sense of fullness.

With 3.7 grams of fiber per portion, wheat germ is a better source of fiber than soy which wheat germ offers 2.6 grams per portion.

Wheat germ vs Soy Fats

Like most other grains and legumes, with the exception of lupins and peanuts, wheat germ and soy are low in fat.

Fats in wheat germ and soy are mostly healthy unsaturated fats. They are naturally cholesterol-free and trans-fat-free.

Total fat in wheat germ and soy:

  • Wheat germ: 9.7 grams per 100 grams
  • Soy: 19.9 per 100 grams

Speaking of saturated fats, wheat germ is 41% lower in saturated fats.

Wheat germ and soy contain 1.7 grams and 2.9 grams of saturated fat per 100 grams, respectively.

Wheat germ vs Soy Vitamins Content

This section will discuss the vitamin content of wheat germ and soy.

Vitamins are micronutrients, meaning we need only a small amount. However, they are very important for many processes in our bodies.

Wheat germ has a higher amount of vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), vitamin B9 (Folate), and vitamin K.

However, soy have a higher amount of vitamin B1 (Thiamine), vitamin B3 (Niacin), vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), and vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine).

Wheat germ and soy contain the same amount of vitamin D, vitamin B12 (Cobalamin), and vitamin E.

The following table shows the exact amount of vitamins wheat germ and soy contain side by side, so you can easily compare them.

Wheat germSoy
Vitamin A022 IU
Vitamin C06 mg
Vitamin D00
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)1.88 mg0.874 mg
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)0.499 mg0.87 mg
Vitamin B3 (Niacin)6.81 mg1.62 mg
Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)2.26 mg0.793 mg
Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine)1.3 mg0.377 mg
Vitamin B9 (Folate)281 µg375 µg
Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)00
Vitamin E0.85 mg0.85 mg
Vitamin K5.9 µg47 µg

Wheat germ vs Soy Minerals Content

Minerals are important for our body to function properly. We need only a small amount of minerals, so they are called micronutrients.

Some minerals, like iron, calcium, zinc or, iodine, are relatively hard to get on a plant-based diet, so it’s important to choose your foods thoughtfully. This part of the wheat germ and soy comparison focuses on their mineral content.

Wheat germ is a better source of calcium, copper, fluoride, iron, magnesium, and potassium than soy.

On the other hand, soy are a higher amount of manganese, phosphorus, selenium, sodium, and zinc.

Check out the table below to learn how wheat germ and soy compare when it comes to mineral content.

Wheat germSoy
Calcium39 mg277 mg
Copper0.796 mg1.66 mg
Fluoride02.2 µg
Iron6.26 mg15.7 mg
Magnesium239 mg280 mg
Manganese13.3 mg2.52 mg
Phosphorus842 mg704 mg
Potassium892 mg1800 mg
Selenium79.2 µg17.8 µg
Sodium12 mg2 mg
Zinc12.3 mg4.89 mg

The Final Word

Wheat germ and soy are highly nutritious and a great addition to a plant-based diet.

Both wheat germ and soy are high in specific vitamins and minerals, and including them in your diet will give you the most benefits they offer.

Antioxidants found in grains and legumes can help to protect cells from damage and may reduce the risk of certain diseases and the effects of aging.

Additionally, the fiber and other nutrients in these foods can support the health of the digestive system and may even help to prevent certain digestive cancers.

Legumes and grains are a versatile food that can be incorporated into any meal of the day, including breakfast, lunch, or dinner. They can be served hot or cold, making them a convenient and tasty addition to a variety of dishes.


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