The Top Health Benefits of Beans

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While there are an estimated 40,000 different varieties of beans produced all over the world, they still all share one thing in common. No matter which type of bean is on your dinner plate, you can be sure that they are highly nutritious and contain several health benefits that may be of importance to you. There are many health benefits of beans! 

It’s also convenient that this superfood is full of protein and other nutrients, while at the same time, only costing you pennies per ounce. Beans are an especially good food to eat while dieting and helping you lose weight.

Stick around and find out more about how beans are not only nutritious for you but can help your body in so many ways.   

Health Benefits of Beans

The Top Health Benefits of Beans

So what do all beans contain that make them so healthy? Let’s take a look. For starters, no matter which bean you choose, they contain protein, which we’ll get into more detail in a second.

They also are rich in fiber, iron, phosphorus, folate, magnesium, potassium, and calcium. Beans even have small traces of copper, zinc, manganese, and vitamins B1, B6, E, and K. Now we’ll show how several of these can improve your health.    

Excellent Source of Protein

If you happen to be vegan, vegetarian, or a bodybuilder, listen closely. Protein can be consumed in other ways besides animal sources. Beans contain a ton of protein due to the number of amino acids that are present.

By making beans more a part of your diet, along with food products like nuts, seeds, cheese, and other dairy products, they work together to make a complete protein meal.

Just to get an idea on average how much protein is in them, consider this. Half a cup of beans will provide the same amount of protein as one ounce of meat. That’s huge!   

Folate is Also Present 

You may be wondering, what in the world do I need folate for? It’s actually an important part of our overall health and ensures that healthy red blood cells are being made.

This nutrient is also important to have in order to prevent neural tube defects in a fetus while a mother is pregnant.   

Beans are Low in Fat

There are also fewer calories and saturated fat in beans than there are with other protein foods, such as meat and dairy products, especially if you choose beans like lima beans, black beans, lentils, and kidney beans.   

They Fill You Up 

Are you looking to have a tinier waistline? Beans contain fiber and other starches that help fill us up faster and can leave you feeling full longer. In the long run, this can also help you not only eat less, but begin to notice a difference in weight.

If you are constantly overeating, beans might help you eat less. If you are dieting and struggle with overeating, make sure that you stick with the daily recommended amount of beans or you’ll defeat the effort. 

Good For Your Heart

Eating a steady diet of foods that contain higher levels of fiber goes a long way in keeping a healthy heart.  It’s believed that people who consume beans on a more regular basis may be helping prevent heart attacks and other cardiovascular issues.

Studies have shown that eating beans can decrease the risk of coronary heart disease and also help lower cholesterol.  

Regulate Blood Sugar

Another good thing that beans do for your body is helping lower your blood sugar, due to the high amounts of fiber that they hold. People that are on high fiber diets reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, and there’s even evidence of improvement in lowering blood sugars among patients that have this condition. 

Helps Prevent Cancer

Beans also contain what are called phytochemicals, or antioxidants, which can actually help reduce the likelihood of you getting cancer. At the very least, they can slow the growth of cancer cells.

They can fight against cancers such as breast cancer, colorectal, gastric, kidney and prostate cancer. In case you’re wondering, black beans are known to have the largest traces of antioxidants.   

Promotes Regularity

It’s no secret that beans can cause gas, and sometimes even uncomfortably so. But did you know that eating beans can actually help you with regularity? We’ve mentioned fiber a number of times already, but it helps in this case as well.

If you’re struggling with constipation, doctors will encourage you to eat foods such as beans. When you eat beans few and far in between, your stomach will continue to have gassy symptoms, but if you eat them more regularly, you’ll notice that those symptoms should be reduced and eventually go away. 

Cooking Beans 

You may have heard that cooking the beans diminishes the number of proteins that they have, and your source would have been correct. But you can rest assured that there’s still plenty of nutrients left over.

Besides, you don’t want to be eating raw beans anyway, especially kidney and cannellini beans. But if you enjoy eating green beans raw, they’re perfectly safe. 

Canned beans still contain about the same amount of nutrients as dried beans, but if you’re wanting to steer clear of the sodium, make sure you buy cans that mention lower sodium.

Do you already have a kitchen pantry fully stocked with beans containing sodium? Not to worry. You can drain the can and then rinse the beans with water to help reduce the amount of sodium present. How To Cook Beans

Caution

Even though beans are highly nutritious and may only cause minor gas issues with most people, eating them on a regular basis isn’t good for everyone. Doing so may cause intestinal problems, so you need to use caution and consult your doctor if you experience any uncomfortable conditions.

Some researchers will tell you that the lectin that is found in beans is actually harmful. But don’t fear. The best way around this is by soaking your beans, followed by draining and rinsing them.

Cooking them also helps reduce the levels of lectin. You can even cook them in a pressure cooker to give yourself more peace of mind. Oh, the health benefits of beans are wonderful. Quick and Easy Refried Beans

Final Word 

There’s no denying it, by adding beans to your diet, you’re adding a whole lot of other yumminess as well. Were you surprised by all the health benefits that eating beans provide you? What stood out the most to you, maybe from personal experience?  May God bless this world, Linda

Kitchen Tools To Cook Beans

Instant Pot or Zavor (formerly Fagor) Pressure Cooker

Large Saucepan

Copyright Images: Beans AdobeStock_63066487 (3)by Picture Partners, Beans in Bags AdobeStock_67402014 by Denio 109

12 thoughts on “The Top Health Benefits of Beans

  • March 10, 2020 at 11:11 am
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    Great article, Linda. I try to eat three servings of beans per day as part of my health goals (I use the Daily Dozen app). Yesterday, my doctor was remarking to her nurse about how healthy and slim I am! The Instant Pot makes it so easy, even at our high altitude.

    Reply
    • March 10, 2020 at 2:29 pm
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      Hi Roxanne, yay for cooking beans with the pressure cooker. Now, I need to look into this Daily Dozen App, Thank you!! Linda

      Reply
  • March 11, 2020 at 2:26 pm
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    Beans are great! The big downfall is when you wake up at like 230am thinking the dog took a s**t inside, which Is never now that she is a year and six months old, and waking my husband up to tell him it smells like the dog took a s**t and mumbling his reply was “babe it wasn’t me but I did have two bean burritos for lunch” uh yeah. Thanks for waking me up me up in a bean burrito gas chamber. I always tell him “everything you smell you taste”. I guess he wanted to share his burritos Lol! Well, not really funny because he kept fluffing the covers and it took me like an hour to back to sleep.

    Reply
  • March 13, 2020 at 5:11 am
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    Thank you for this helpful article!
    Lentils are part of the beans that we store and use. I strive to plan one meal per day around beans or lentils. That and whole grains keep us much healthier. Way less doctor bills.

    Reply
    • March 13, 2020 at 7:23 am
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      Hi Janet, you are the reason I picked a bag of lentils, thank you. You have mentioned them often. Please share how you use them when you have time. I want to start incorporating them more. Thanks, Janet! Linda

      Reply
      • March 15, 2020 at 11:10 am
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        Hi Linda,
        Here are some of the ways I use lentils (we store the green and the red, both are common to buy).
        I do like brown lentils, but since using up my 50# bag, I have had a very hard time finding them:

        Green lentils:
        lentil tacos (found this recipe on Taste of Home) , lentils n’ eggs, lentil chili, chicken lentil stew, lentil chorizo burritos, barbeque lentils, lentil sloppy joes (our family likes half lentils and half ground beef), italian lentil wheat stew (very popular when I’m teaching/take samples), mexi lentils (uses brown rice and lentils and I have about 12 recipes to make with this including a mexi lentil taco salad), lentil n’ vegetables over mashed potatoes, lentil loaf, surprise chocolate cake, apple lentil cake

        Red lentils:
        red lentil tomato soup (my fave), creamy red lentil soup with curried yogurt, indian red lentil dal, greek red lentil soup, red lentil Thai coconut soup, red lentil curry bowl, red lentil hummus, red lentil chicken sliders, lentil brownies, red lentil cookies

        Reply
        • March 15, 2020 at 3:54 pm
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          Hi Janet, this helps a lot!! You are such a good example to me about using different beans or lentils. I’ve always used pinto beans for years and cooked them for bean burritos. Now that we’re down to two people I buy the cans. Thank you for sharing your wisdom, Linda

          Reply
  • March 15, 2020 at 11:12 am
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    PS……red lentils break down when cooked. …….green lentils keep their shape when cooked

    Reply
    • March 15, 2020 at 3:49 pm
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      Hi Janet, I just looked, the bag I bought are green lentils. Thank you for teaching me how to use them. Linda

      Reply

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