“Beans, beans, the magical fruit, the more you eat, the more you....”
To fill in the above childish couplet, instead of completing it with the vulgar refrain, try instead concluding it with benefits of this superfood, which technically, according to botanists, is considered a fruit (but in its culinary makeup, considered a legume or vegetable).
Some of the benefits of eating beans includes:
- --lowering your cholesterol levels
- --increasing your daily fiber intake
- --managing blood sugar
- --boosting bone-strengthening calcium in the diet
- --reducing risk of high blood pressure and stroke
But aren't beans starches?
Yes. Beans and lentils, which come from a different type of seed than beans, but also are a legume, are starches but they won’t spike your blood sugar level like other rapidly-burning starches, especially those that contain flour, especially white flour. (Keep in mind that even many whole grain flours can rapidly turn into sugar.)
It’s the the high fiber content in beans that prevents the starchy component of beans from being quickly digested and elevating blood sugar levels. On average (depending on the bean), there are 15 grams of fiber in one cup. In addition to helping you stay regular, fiber, don’t forget, helps you feel satisfied and full for a longer time than high-carb foods with little fiber. This helps eliminate cravings.
Beans are actually quite starchy, but the molecular structure of the starch in beans breaks down slower than refined starches. Despite their starchy nature, few nutritionists would advocate limiting beans as part of a healthy diet, with a couple exceptions.What are those exceptions?
Canned beans usually contain exceptionally high amounts of sodium. Most Americans already eat too many processed, sodium-soaked foods that lacks critical vitamins and minerals. Instead of canned beans, opt for dry beans, which brings us to the next exception.
Many people experience bloating (or as the sophomoric nursery rhyme at the beginning of the article suggests, an unpleasant bout of flatulence) after eating certain kinds of beans, even whole dried varieties. The unpleasant, undigested sensation after eating certain beans could be caused by compounds in foods called ‘oxalates’ and ‘phytates’ that prevent absorption of certain nutrients.
As if modifying your diet to improve your blood sugar levels wasn't challenging enough for some, perhaps it’s downright frustrating to hear that certain superfoods like beans contain compounds that, in theory, aren't good for you.
A simple way to reduce the amount of unwanted compounds in beans, is a technique that traditional societies have been using for generations: soaking.
Soaking dry beans in water overnight and then draining the beans will help eliminate some of the potentially-toxic compounds.
Why else are beans a superfood for those with diabetes?
Beans have been scientifically proven to lower the chance of developing diabetes. One review of beans’ amazing power to lower blood sugar levels, was documented in the popular “Shanghai Women’s Health Study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Though the study specifically focused on the merits of soybeans’ ability to minimize the risk of becoming diabetic, the overwhelming majority of beans can help improve diabetes.
Processed foods (think anything that doesn't run, fly, swim or grow in the ground or on a tree) lack vitamins and minerals, which keep us healthy. Beans are loaded with a plethora of vitamins and minerals (in addition to calcium, they are loaded with potassium and B Vitamins such as folate, to name a few). Beans also help raise the levels of the ‘appetite hormone’, leptin, signaling the brain that we are getting full.
If rice quickly converts into sugar, should I avoid eating beans and rice?
Many societies around the world, especially non-Western countries that can't afford to eat as much meat as we do, have depended on beans and rice as a staple in their diet.
While it’s true that the fiber and protein content found in beans will help lower the glycemic load of the rice, thus delaying its conversion into sugar, a better option would be to eat beans and Miracle Rice, which is a calorie-free soluble fiber that has an uncanny texture to the regular rice you've been eating for years.
If adding beans to your diet is easy enough, simply buying dried beans in bulk from a store, then soaking and draining, eating your favorite beans and rice dish is now even easier. Unlike the healthiest rices (wild, heirloom varieties), which take 40 minutes or longer to cook, Miracle Rice takes no time to cook!
Simply remove from the eco-friendly packaging, rinse and drain and stir in with your favorite vegetables--and of course, beans.Make a scrumptiously delicious and healthy beans and rice dish. Order Miracle Rice now. You'll receive a free 87-page Cookbook and Diet Plan worth $29.99 FREE for download with all purchases!
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