Why beans are a superfood and good for you.
Have you ever wondered why beans are a superfood and why they are so good for your digestive and overall health?
In the past, there has been a bit of a fuss about putting foods neatly into boxes like good/bad, healthy/unhealthy or superfoods/non-super foods.
Over the years the term super food or super foods has cropped up quite a lot but what does being a super food actually mean.
How to be a superfood
To be classed as a super food the food in question needs to demonstrate some exceptional health benefits and when these benefits are actually proven sales as well as profits inevitably skyrocket for whoever is producing these super foods, which means that the race is always on to find the next big discovery in the world of super foods .
When a new super food is discovered you can guarantee that there will be no end of fancy ads and marketing all designed to make us reach into their already well depleted pockets to pull out our pennies and spend them the new latest super food craze.
A cheap superfood staple!
This is where beans come in. Beans are a super food that is relatively inexpensive, has an exceptionally long shelf life, huge nutritional value and is incredibly versatile. With over 70 varieties you will not go running out of choice very quickly.
Beans are a great source of protein for building and repairing body tissue they also contain fat for energy as well as offering a host of vitamins and minerals which help make them an essential for the cupboard, especially for those who exercise regularly and need the extra nutrition.
But what makes beans a superfood?
But what seriously makes beans class as a super food is that they are a fantastic source of fermentable carbohydrate, also known as non-digestible carbohydrate.
Now unlike digestible carbohydrate, e.g. fruits, vegetables and grains, which are digested in the stomach and small intestine. Non digestible carbs are largely resistant to the digestive process so they proceed down the colon where they go through a fermentation process and this process produces short chain fatty acids [SCFAs] .
This process of producing short-chain fatty acids has a lot of health benefits.
- They protect cells and are also linked with less genetic damage, potentially reducing the risk of cancer.
- They increase mineral absorption with calcium and magnesium being a big part of this.
- SFA feeds healthy gut bacteria in the colon with the growth of unhealthy bacteria and their toxic by-products being suppressed, which helps in preventing digestive conditions.
- It slows down the pace at which digestible carbohydrates get broken down, providing us with a steady stream of energy throughout the day.
- As a by-product of the above they keep us feeling fuller for longer, stopping us having cravings for sweet salty and fatty foods.
Why kidney beans are good for you
Kidney beans are a great source of Molybdenum which is a trace metal partly responsible for detoxifying sulphites, which are natural preservatives commonly added to many prepared foods and wine.
If deficient in Molybdenum regular consumption of these added sulphates can result in palpitations headaches and disorientation.
Why chickpeas are good for you
Chickpeas contain Calcium and Vitamin D as well as Vitamin K, which is necessary for building strong bones as is Manganese, which is also found in chickpeas.
Manganese allows these other vital nutrients to be absorbed into the bone and is also involved in the production of Thyroxin, a Thyroid hormone crucial for controlling our metabolic rate.
Why haricot beans are good for you
Haricot beans or as they are usually known “baked beans” are a rich source of iron and essential mineral used for transporting oxygen to the body.
Even a slight deficiency in iron can cause fatigue and weakness as well as an increase in lactic acid production, making muscle soreness more likely, as well as an impairment of the ability to maintain a normal body temperature one exposure to cold.
Why adzuki beans are good for you
One of the highest protein and lowest fat variety of beans, Adzuki beans contain a high level of Potassium, low Potassium stores mean the athletes become tired more easily due to a decrease in glycogen levels, which is the fuel used for exercising muscles.
Excessive sweating diarrhoea or poor water intake will also increase your Potassium requirements.
Superfoods are not a magic bullet and using one will not make you super healthy. But using a select few may be of benefit to your overall health and wellbeing.
Now that you know why beans are a superfood and good for you, why not give them a go? They are cheap, versatile, packed full of beneficial carbohydrate and full of some essential vitamins.
If you are going to try and implement a food change for better health, why not start with beans?
Have you tried beans or are you going to? What’s your experience with them? Let me know in the comments below.
Wishing you good health and happiness
Click here to get your Free guides to health and immunity support.