Beans are usually tagged as the ‘villains’ in the food series. In fact, a good number of us want nothing to do with beans while in reality we need it to balance and maintain a healthy diet.
It is one legume that is packed with a lot of nutrients that benefits us in numerous ways. They contain protease inhibitors that protect us from certain harmful toxins and are also good sources of antioxidant vitamins A, C, E, B complex and the zinc co-factor. There are different types of beans and they are used in the making of foods like moi moi, akara, ekuru etc.
Beans have a good number of health benefits we should know about.
- They can prevent heart-related diseases
Studies have shown that consuming more of legumes is linked to reducing the risk of heart diseases as a result of the phytochemicals present in them. They also lower the risk of premature deaths, particularly cardiovascular disease-related deaths.
- They are able to fight cancer
They have several cancer-fighting chemicals (isoflavones and phytosterols) present in them that are able to lower the risk of having cancer.
- They assist in managing diabetes
Research has made it known that for people living with diabetes, eating beans can be particularly beneficial because the balance of complex carbohydrates (starch) and proteins in it brings about a slow and steady source of glucose instead of the sudden increase that usually comes with taking simple carbohydrates (sugars).
- You can lose weight with beans
Due to its rich fiber content, eating it will fill up your stomach more quickly thereby preventing you from overeating and unnecessary snacking after meal. It also supplies you with energy and slows down any increase in blood sugar.
- They lower cholesterol levels
Soluble fiber plays an important role in checking blood cholesterol levels. Beans contain soluble fiber and also saponins that help to lower cholesterol.
Except for medically backed up reasons, beans should not be excluded when planning our family diet.