7 Black Bean Health Benefits
Black beans can also be called turtle beans because of their shell-like appearance. Like other legumes, including lentils, peanuts, and peas, black beans are great sources of soluble fiber, resistant starch, and protein. In addition, they contain an array of nutrients and vitamins: thiamine, magnesium, manganese, selenium, folate, copper, vitamin B6, potassium, iron, and calcium. Black beans are a staple ingredient in Caribbean cuisine and Latin America. The main reason why they were a staple food in these areas is that they are cheap, and they have widespread growth.
The black bean has amazing versatility. You can eat them on their own or put them in a smoothie or even make your own black bean choco cookies. Our goal with NoRefined.com is to show you many recipes that use black beans.
Some preparation methods can lower the nutrient content of these beans. For instance, soaking them in water can remove tannins and phytates. Based on science, black beans have high levels of anthocyanin, which have antioxidant abilities. Also, they contain omega-3 fatty acids and folic acid. Below are the top 7 black bean health benefits:
1. Promote Heart Health
Incorporating black beans in your diet will manage your blood pressure and lower blood cholesterol. There are numerous cardiovascular health risks associated with low-density lipoprotein, including stroke, peripheral artery disease, heart attack, and coronary artery disease. Black beans contain the saponin compound, which acts as an antioxidant. Scientifically, antioxidants play a significant role in lowering your cholesterol levels. In addition, the bean’s soluble fiber will reduce triglyceride and cholesterol levels. Based on research, individuals who consume black beans have a lower risk of developing cardiovascular problems. Statistically, if you eat black beans, you have an 11% lower risk of developing heart problems. There’s an inverse correlation between blood pressure and black bean fiber. This means that individuals who consume more black beans have healthy blood pressure. Also, flavonoids in black beans will encourage muscle relaxation and prevent platelet aggregation, thus reducing blood pressure. A healthy heart lowers your risk of developing other chronic health issues, such as asthma, type 2 diabetes, certain cancers, and joint pain.
Beans are packed full of antioxidants, which protect against heart disease and cancer. They also contain folate, an essential nutrient that helps prevent birth defects and certain types of cancers. Folate is found naturally in leafy green vegetables such as spinach, broccoli, and kale. But if you don’t eat enough of these foods, you may not get enough folate. Folates are converted to another form of vitamin B known as folic acid, which is used by cells to make DNA and RNA.
It’s estimated that half of all Americans aren’t getting enough folate each day. That’s why it’s important to include beans in your daily diet.
2. Reduces the Risk of Cancer
Cancer is categorized as a killer disease. Currently, most people are struggling with various types of cancers as a result of a change in lifestyle and bad habits. In addition, there are several factors that can increase your risk of developing cancer: family history, obesity, exposure to radiation, some types of viral infections, tobacco use, and specific chemicals. According to studies, black beans can help you reduce the risk of various cancers. Unlike most vegetables and fruits, black beans contain an essential mineral termed selenium. This mineral plays a vital role in detoxifying some cancer-causing compounds in your body. In addition, it enhances liver enzyme function. In some studies, selenium decreases tumor growth rates and prevents inflammation. Saponins prevent cancer cells from spreading or multiplying to other body parts. Soluble fiber intake from vegetables and fruits, including black beans, will lower your risk of developing colorectal cancer. Also, black beans are great sources of folate, which plays a major role in DNA repair and synthesis, thus lowering the risk of certain cancers.
3. Manages Diabetes
There are certain aspects that increase your risk of developing type 2 diabetes, such as an inactive lifestyle, obesity, and being overweight. Black beans can help in managing both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. For instance, black beans will improve lipids, insulin, and sugar levels, especially in individuals with type 2 diabetes. On the other hand, these beans will lower blood glucose in individuals with type 1 diabetes. Soluble fiber is essential in managing healthy blood sugar levels. Managing your diabetes is an excellent way to reduce bladder problems, diabetes symptoms, and fatigue. In addition, controlling type 2 diabetes can reduce your odds of experiencing dementia, vision problems, and other chronic medical issues. In some instances, managing diabetes will help you maintain a healthy weight.
4. Maintain Healthy Bones
As you age, your body will reabsorb minerals, such as phosphate and calcium, from your bones, thus making your bones weak. In the long run, this process is termed osteoporosis. The calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, zinc, copper, and manganese in black beans will contribute to maintaining bone structure and strength. According to science, phosphorous, magnesium, and calcium are important in bone structure. On the other side, zinc and iron play essential roles in maintaining the elasticity and strength of joints and bones. Based on statistics, 60% of magnesium, 99% of calcium, and 80% of phosphorous are contained in bones. Therefore, it’s important to consume black beans because it’s a great source of these minerals.
5. Weight Loss
Most people are struggling with obesity. There are various factors that’ll increase your risk of becoming obese or overweight: leptin resistance, genetics, food addiction, engineered junk foods, aggressive marketing, certain medications, insulin, and sugar-sweetened foods. Based on studies, being overweight or obese increases your risk of developing coronary heart disease, high blood pressure, gallbladder disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, high LDL cholesterol, and osteoarthritis. As previously mentioned, black beans are great sources of dietary fiber. Soluble fiber plays a great role in weight management and weight loss. Fiber acts as a bulking agent in your digestive system, thus reducing your hunger. Foods rich in fiber will increase your sense of being full which lowers your odds of consuming junk foods. This lowers your overall calorie intake, thereby leading to a healthy weight. Numerous studies show that black beans decrease the risk of diabetes, obesity, and heart disease. Also, black beans will increase your energy levels, promote a healthy complexion, and lower weight.
6. Healthy Digestion
Black beans are great sources of fiber; therefore, soluble fiber will help you reduce the risk of constipation. In addition, the fiber content will promote a healthy digestive tract and provide healthy bacteria in the large intestines.
The human digestive system is capable of breaking down about 30 percent of the total calories we eat every day. If you want to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight, it’s important to keep your diet as clean as possible. One of the easiest ways to ensure this happens is by eating more beans.
Beans contain compounds called phytates, which help break down protein in our bodies. Phytic acid binds to calcium, iron, zinc, magnesium, copper, and other trace elements, preventing them from being absorbed properly.
Beans and legumes contain prebiotics and probiotics. Prebiotic and Probiotic supplements help improve the digestive system by increasing numbers of beneficial bacteria in the intestines. It also helps maintain the balance between the good (probiotics) and bad (pathogens) microorganisms in the intestines.
This means that when you consume beans regularly, you’ll have better absorption of nutrients, making it easier to stay at a healthy weight. In fact, research shows that people who eat legumes like lentils, chickpeas, and kidney beans tend to weigh less than those who don’t.
7. Lowers Blood Pressure
Maintaining a healthy sodium intake will help you keep your blood pressure at a normal level. Based on science, black beans are great sources of calcium, magnesium, and potassium, which lower blood pressure. In addition, they’re low in sodium. You can rinse black beans to reduce the sodium content. Also, you can opt to buy low sodium canned options.
Black beans are among the most consumed legumes worldwide. They contain fiber, plant-based protein, and antioxidants. Consuming black beans will boost your overall well-being.