What are the benefits of beans?

Judy Caplan
Nutrition & Dietetics
Beans are by far the best plant source of protein. Although beans belong to the same plant family, they do come in a myriad of forms. Beans are a boon to diabetics because they are digested slowly causing a slow rise in blood sugar. In fact diabetics who eat lots of beans may need less insulin to control their blood sugar. Beans are full of energy giving complex carbohydrates, B vitamins, potassium, magnesium, calcium, zinc, and iron. The protein in beans unlike animal protein is fat free and generally high in fiber.
They may not seem sexy, but protein -- and fiber-loaded beans and other legumes can help build a better body. "Adding beans to your diet could help you lose weight, even without cutting calories," says Wendy Bazilian, DrPH, MA, RD, author of The Superfoods Rx Diet. On average, people who eat beans weigh 6.6 pounds less, yet eat 199 more daily calories than people who don't eat them. Beans can lower your risk of heart disease and cancer, reduce your risk of diabetes, and help you lose belly fat. To avoid flatulence, ease into them slowly and take Beano until your body adjusts.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.