Black beans are an often-overlooked treasure. In addition to their delicious flavor, black beans contain things such as polyphenols, unsaturated fatty acids, and fiber, all of which provide an array of health benefits. In order to gain some of these benefits, we have a couple of tasty recipes you can try, which will not only help detoxify your body and improve your health, but they can also help slow down the aging process.
The benefits of black beans
Black beans are loaded with protein, folate, and potassium. They also contain more fiber than any other bean, at 16.6 grams per cup. Black beans contain both soluble and insoluble fiber, so not only do they decrease your risk for many chronic diseases, but they also help you stay fuller longer.
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While it’s well-known that polyphenols, a category of naturally occurring, health-promoting compounds, are abundant in things like red wine and blueberries, it may come as a surprise to know that they’re also found in black beans.
At 59 mg per cup, black beans contain more polyphenols than any other type of bean. Known for their ability to fight free-radicals and prevent cellular damage, polyphenols are found in many foods, with over 8,000 types of polyphenols having been identified so far. Let’s take a look at just a few of the polyphenols found in black beans — anthocyanins, saponins, and isoflavones.
Anthocyanins increase lipid metabolism
Anthocyanins, contained in the melanin component of black beans, are one of the many types of polyphenols. One amazing property of anthocyanins is that they accelerate lipid metabolism, while also making it difficult for fat to form, thereby promoting weight loss.
Anthocyanins have some other great health benefits, such as preventing cancer and arteriosclerosis, promoting blood circulation, improving immune and brain function, and aiding in the prevention of diabetes. As an added bonus, they’re also known to have anti-aging properties.
Saponins inhibit lipid absorption
Soluble in both oil and water, saponins, which are also found in black beans, inhibit lipid absorption, remove lipids that have accumulated on the inner lining of blood vessels, and prevent the growth of lipid peroxides. It is for these reasons that saponins are known to be cardioprotective.
Saponins also control the formation of body fat, thereby preventing obesity and its complications. In addition, saponins have antimicrobial properties, thus boosting immune function, and they’ve also demonstrated an ability to fight cancer cells.
Isoflavones balance hormone secretion
Black beans are also rich in isoflavones. Natural isoflavones can improve lipid metabolism, inhibit the formation of blood lipids, and help control weight gain.
They also have many benefits for women’s health. For example, they have a similar effect to estrogen, which can inhibit the loss of calcium from the bones, thereby preventing osteoporosis. Isoflavones also help regulate the balance of hormone secretion and improve endocrine disorders.
In addition, black beans can inhibit the loss of calcium from bones, helping to prevent osteoporosis. The calcium and phosphorus found in black beans are important to bone structure, while the iron and zinc in black beans help maintain bone strength.
Fiber improves excretion and detoxification
Black beans contain a lot of water-soluble fiber, which can destroy the enemy of obesity — constipation — and help improve excretion and detoxification.
The high fiber content of black beans also promotes gastrointestinal motility, in addition to providing nutrients for the good bacteria in the GI tract. Fiber also helps decrease your calorie intake by making you feel fuller, and for a longer period of time, than many other foods.
Black bean recipes for better health
Besides cooking black beans the traditional way and eating them as a part of your meal, we have a couple of great recipes that have long been used for their health benefits.
First is the black bean boil method. This simple recipe is ready in no time and is a popular method for improving health.
Take 15 dry black beans and place them in a pan. Fry the beans until the skin cracks, then put them in a cup. Next, boil ⅔ cup (150 ml) of water, pour it into the cup, then cover with a lid and allow to simmer for five minutes before drinking.
Drink this three times a day, after meals, for some amazing health benefits.
The second recipe is a type of black bean milk, known as black soybean milk. It is said to have anti-aging benefits and can also help improve rheumatism.
Black soybean milk is not cold like soybeans, and so will not cause diarrhea, even if drinking too much of it. Black soybean milk and whole wheat bread, eaten in combination, are considered “golden partners” and are a delicious and nutritious breakfast for promoting weight loss.
Soak 1 cup of black beans in water overnight to soften the beans. Drain off the water and place the beans in a blender. Add approximately 6 cups of water to the blender and blend until the mixture is thin enough to drink. Place the mixture into a pot on the stove, and bring to a boil. Remove to let cool, then bring to a boil a second time*. Add a little raw honey or sugar to taste, and enjoy.
*Due to black beans having a molecule that many cannot digest, it is very important that this mixture is brought to a full boil twice, otherwise, it may be harmful to your health.
Drink this once a day on a full stomach to help with the absorption of nutrients.
As you can see, black beans truly have some amazing health benefits! Give these easy recipes a try and experience them for yourself.
Translated by Joseph Wu and edited by T. Denning