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Why It’s Time to Stop Overlooking Legumes

Incorporating beans into your daily meals could save you money and keep you healthy. And they’re an easy way to add natural, plant-based ingredients to your meals.

Nutritional value of beans, large assortment of beans

Often overlooked, yet a good source of nutrition in any diet, beans are frequently taken for granted—few people stop to really give them any thought. And that’s just not fair; all beans deserve love. So in the interest of helping beans gain the recognition they deserve, we’ve compiled a list of reasons you should give beans a chance.

Related: 3 Ways Cucumbers Can Keep You Healthy

They’re cheap

And we’re talking dollar menu cheap. For about a buck, you can grab yourself a bag of beans, soak them overnight, and then cook them the next day and have several meals’ worth of delicious beans (the soaking part is important if you want to avoid the gaseous quality beans are known for). Canned beans are also great to have on hand for emergencies and are great to take on camping trips. 

They’re nutritious

Beans are especially important for vegetarians and vegans who may not be getting the recommended dose of protein needed without consuming animal products. For an exact breakdown of nutrition in each type of bean, consult The Bean Institute’s list. A half-cup of black beans has just 114 calories while delivering 8 grams of protein, 20 carbs, and 8 grams of fiber.  

This makes them an ideal source of plant-based protein that also contains complex carbohydrates (the low-glycemic type of carbs that are much healthier than their simple carbohydrate counterparts). Need more reasons to love them? They also contain iron, potassium, magnesium, and loads of other nutrients that most Americans aren’t getting enough of in our diets. 

They’re versatile

You can use them in soups, salads, pastas, slow cooker meals, chili, and hundreds of other dishes. Sprinkle some pink rock salt on them and eat them by themselves or add a little cheese.  

They’re powerful

There is significant evidence that beans help reduce the risk factors for diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and even obesity. Plus, it’s rare for someone to be allergic to beans, so they’re easily added to most diets. There is also evidence that beans can help reduce cholesterol and increase satiety.  

Related: Nuts about Nuts: The Healthful Benefits of These Versatile Snacks

Incorporating beans into your daily meals could actually save you money and provide health benefits. And they’re an easy way to add natural, plant-based ingredients to your meals.

While you’re here, check out our other healthy living articles.    

 

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Post Author

Jennifer Diffley
Jennifer Diffley is a SLC resident. She is a senior copywriter and has her MFA in creative writing from NYU. Jennifer is committed to health, but has an unhealthy fascination with outrageous shoes.