Beans provide numerous health benefits, and they fit into several different food groups: they are rich in complex carbonhydrate like breads and starches, as a plant-based food, offering an array of vitamins, minerals: such as copper, folate, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorous, potassium and zinc and antioxidants, like their vegetables group.
It can also fall in proteineous group, supplying protein in large amounts. Beans provide little to no fat, cholesterol-free and lower triglyceride level.
Nutritional benefits of beans
1. They are packed with good quantity of protein as good source of plant protein. It is a better substitute for meat, poultry or fish especially for the vegetarians.
2. Beans are good for the heart because they contain an abundance of soluble fiber, which can lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels. If canned bean is your choice, you can drain up to 40 percent of the sodium by rinsing them in water.
3. High levels of LDL cholesterol the bad kind can stick to the walls of your blood vessels, causing inflammation and plaque buildup. The soluble fiber in beans binds to cholesterol in the GI tract, which prevents it from being absorbed in the blood.
4. Beans are also good sources of potassium and magnesium, key minerals for the heart. Potassium naturally removes excess sodium and water from your system, which can reduce blood pressure. Magnesium on the other hand aids in nerve function and blood pressure regulation .
5. They are low in fat; most beans varieties are about 2 to 3 percent fat, and contain no cholesterol.
6. Beans balance blood sugar because of the low glycemic index function. Beans contain complex carbohydrates and protein .Beans are digested slowly, which helps keep blood glucose stable and may cut back fatigue and irritability.
7. It prevents constipation because high fiber content in them.
8. It can serve as means of losing weight due to the presence of slow metabolism of complex carbohydrate presence which helps in keeping one full.
9. Beans are high in iron, because beans are a plant food, they contain non-heme iron, that is not readily absorbed as the heme iron found in meat. For better absorption, it is recommended that it is eaten with foods high in vitamin C. Vitamin C gives non-heme iron a sizable boost it absorption about six times. So you can eat beans with foods like bell peppers, broccoli, tomatoes, and citrus.
10. The presence of proteins, fibre and alpha- amylase enzymes help prevent both extremes - excessive simple sugar release from the digestive tract, and also insufficient simple sugar release in that way it helps in prevention of type 2 diabetes.
11. Beans are a good source of B vitamins. In many bean varieties, there are presence of thiamin, niacin, riboflavin, B6, and folate—B vitamins that helps in conversion of food to energy, boost good cholesterol, and reduce inflammation among other things. Research has shown that folate and B6 may be helpful for lowering your risk of cardiovascular diseases.
12. They may reduce cancer risk because they are rich in antioxidants, which protect against free radicals that could damage cells and lead to cancer. Especially in both colon and rectal cancers. Beans also contain saponins, saponins has been shown to block the reproduction of cancer cells and slow the growth of tumours.
13. The indigestible fraction in beans allows bacteria in the colon to produce butyric acid. . Cells lining the inside of the colon can use this butyric acid to fuel their many activities and keep the lower digestive tract functioning properly and lower risk of colon cancer.
14. Beans contain phytonutrient benefits. These phytonutrients also function as antioxidants and, in some cases, as anti-inflammatory compounds as well. The seed coat of the black bean, the outermost part is an outstanding source of three anthocyanin flavonoids: delphinidin, petunidin, and malvidin.
15. These three anthocyanins are primarily responsible for the rich black color that we see on the bean surface. Kaempferol and quercetin are additional flavonoids provided by this legume. Also contained in beans are hydroxycinnamic acids including ferulic, sinapic, and chlorogenic acid, as well as numerous triterpenoids, that keep the body function well.
1. Before washing beans, spread them out on a light colored plate or flat surface to check for, and remove, small stones, debris or damaged beans. After this process, place the beans in a strainer, rinsing them thoroughly under cool running water.
2. Pour water in a deep pot, add the beans and allow boil for about 20minutes.At this time the beans is not soften.
3. Wash the rice a bowl, sieve the water and add to the beans. At this point the minutes which the beans would have been soften it is summed up to soften both the rice and the bean.
4. After some minutes add salt to taste and add some more water if it is not properly soft.
5. Check regularly to avoid over flowing of water that can eventually put off the fire there making the rice and bean soaked and marshy.
6. After, drain in a sieve and it is ready to be served with stew and also it can be garnished with carrot, sweet corn or fried plantains as you wish.
By Naij.com Contributor - Oluremilekun Osobu-Asubiojo