One of the Top Five Healthiest Foods
They are good in so many ways: your body, your blood, your pocketbook, your taste buds, and even the environment.
Beans are generally considered a low cost, healthy alternative to most other protein sources like meat, dairy and most grains.
9 Big Benefits Of These Tiny Beans
1. Low Cost:
For just 20-30 cents you buy one cup of lentils – which can supply 1/3 of the daily protein requirement for a 150 pound adult plus all kinds of other nutrients.
2. High Protein:
Lentils have the highest level of protein by weight of any plant based food.
3. High Nutrition:
Lentils are the mightiest of the beans. If beans are good for you, then lentils the smallest of the beans are GREAT for you. In general the smaller the seed the more nutrition a food is by weight or volume.
5. Most Alkaline of all Protein Sources: (read Signs of an alkaline body)
6. Easy to Digest and Cook: Compared to many other beans they are much faster to cook and easier to digest. This is why they have been the mainstay of many cultures for centuries. Learn how to cook them: Cooking Lentils
7. Healthy For the Soil and Environment:
Lentils increase nitrogen and other essential nutrient to the soil during growth. They require less moisture than most crops and prevent soil erosion. By eating lentils you are helping the earth and the environment!
8. High in Cholesterol Lowering Fiber: (both soluble and insoluble).
Numerous studies have shown high levels of fiber associated with decreased degenerative diseases. In one study that examined food intake patterns of 16,000 middle-aged men – in relation to the risk of death from coronary heart disease, researchers found that legumes were associated with a whopping 82% reduction in risk!!
Some lentils like brown lentils grown in N. America are so tasty that all you have to do to boil and add a bit of salt. Other lentils are more bland so a bit a spice is needed. This is the ‘dal’ of many eastern countries. Either way if you are interested in healthy cooking and ever considered reducing meat consumption, it definitely worth it to find a few good lentil dishes you like.
The lentil is one of the oldest cultivated legume, dating back at least 8000 years. Although the scientific name relates to the lens of the eye it is interesting that it is one of the foods used in the Christian Lent period, a time when one level of fasting is to abstain from any kind of meat.
Power Nutrients in Lentils: iron, protein, phosphorus, copper, Vitamin B1, potassium
Power Plus Nutrients: Fiber, tryptophan, manganese,
Extreme Power Nutrients: Folate, Molybdenum
Caution: Because lentils are high in so many nutrients, they are high in natural substances called purines. If you have a physical condition which requires you to be on a low purine diet this is to be considered. Recent research though, indicates that the purines from vegetable sources does not have the same negative effect as the purines from meat and fish.
Recipes: Lentils are SO good for you so we will be adding many different recipes. Here are links for a couple of recipes:
- Lentil Soup/stew: http://realfoodforlife.com/lentil-stew
- Red Lentil Soup: http://realfoodforlife.com/red-lentil-soup/
- Learn how to cook them: Cooking Lentils