Beans are infamous for being a fruit of the musical variety. In fact, beans are not a fruit at all, though it is true they can contribute to a trumpet blast of epic proportions under the right conditions. Or the wrong conditions, depending on your perspective. The nutritional value of beans exceeds even their value as the product that produces the wind that can transform your body into a brass instrument. That’s brass instrument.
You see, here’s the reason that beans show up on so many dietary recommendations for weight loss. Beans of a colors, textures and sizes are known in the dieting biz as complex carbohydrates. Rather than provide a technical breakdown of what that means which is sure to make send you off to the land of slumber, I’ll get you the short story. Complex carbohydrates are foods that essentially make you feel full rather than leave you wanting more. While it is true that beans are not exactly the typical low-calorie food you think of when trying to lose weight, the reality is that you will feel full long before you reach the full extent of calories listed on a nutrition label. In other words, you will feel more full after consuming fewer calories courtesy of beans than you will feel after eating twice as many calories courtesy of something like potato chips. Don’t be scared by the hefty calorie count associated with many beans and instead realize that you can lose weight by needing to eat less and pushing yourself away from the table more quickly.
Beans are one of the plants which feature polyphenols known as lignans. Studies into the possible benefits of plant-based lignans as a means of fighting off cancer started picking up steam in the early 1990s. Since then, increased evidence is building that points toward the very same type of lignans commonly found in beans showing promise not only to help fend off cancer, but as a very effective tool in recovery from post-menopausal breast cancer. So far, the bulk of the research has indicated that lignans are most effective in the battle against that very specific type of cancer, but do not be surprised if the future brings good news for bean eaters relative to stemming the assault from a much wider variety of cancers.
Beans contain fiber, but you almost have to have known that. After all, the tooting sound coming from those who regularly consume beans is not the result of plumbing that is blocked up, right. A consistent diet of beans will definitely keep you regular, but the very same fiber that keeps your bathroom visitation down to a reasonable time period also serves to reduce the levels of blood-glucose. Those with diabetes will recognize immediately the benefit of adding beans to their diet. Any food that can help undermine a rise in blood-glucose is one that helps to deal with the distinctly less than fun problems associated with living the D-life.