In a previous article, we talked about whole grains and their importance in this century, based on the book by Laura Kohan, entitled Healthy Foods for the XXI century. The book is as fertile as an exquisite garden, suggests many ideas and offers delicious foods and recipes that give rise to prepare other recipes. This time I am tempted to speak of legumes which, along with whole grains, are one of the pillars of the power of this century.
What is a legume?
A pod is the fruit resulting from leguminous plants. There are many varieties of legumes, however, share a similar structure and properties. Among the most popular legumes include beans, peas, lentils, chickpeas, soybeans, peanuts (believed to be a nut, but actually the peanut belongs to the family of legumes because the result of a sheath, etc.). All of them with excellent health and beauty benefits.
Unfortunately, legumes are not very popular in the Spanish diet; their consumption has been declining slowly, gradually neglected. Laura Kohan says in her book that this is "a pity, because this incredible and cheap source of protein, which is at the time the third level of the classic food pyramid, is a substance with special effects to our body."
However, legumes seem to begin to arouse interest in people, because of the great contribution of quality nutrients for our body. In addition, legumes have many advantages, like low levels of fat, greatest contributions in fiber and with effective protection against cardiovascular disease and obesity. They also control blood sugar, improve intestinal transit, enhance immunity, prevent cancer, help menopause, obesity and inhibit growth and promote the proper functioning of the nervous system.
Each of the above points explains Laura, in her book in detail *, where she also explains that the legumes "... are very rich in minerals such as iron, calcium, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium or iodine. They also have high proteins, although some lack of some essential amino acids ... "However, this is no problem because"... when combined with grains, both foods are converted into a complete and perfect food".
With these data, we can go arming in our head an idea of how to eat as much as possible in this century, making the most of the nutrients in food and combining with intelligence.
Then we will give a brief list of some of the vegetables in the diet of XXI century, so you can start to consider them in your daily menu.
Are one of most consumed legumes in Spain, containing a large supply of nutrients which include vitamin B1, B3 and B6, as well as zinc. Thanks to their high selenium content, prevent oxidation of body cells that are caused by free radicals.
Rich in iron, potassium, folate, folic acid and fiber of high quality. We must emphasize that fiber reduces blood cholesterol, prevents different types of cancer, and that helps fight constipation, obesity and overweight.
Laura makes special mention of azuki or adzuki bean, which is the most important vegetable of the Asian diet for its many properties. Also explains the use of this bean by Chinese medicine, who certified the ability of this legume to strengthen the heart, improve blood circulation, combat symptoms of fatigue and weakness, among other things. Recommended during pregnancy and breastfeeding, because they say stimulates the production of breast milk. It has "high levels of protein, carbohydrates, fiber, vitamin B1, iron and phosphorus..." Ideal for the diet of children and adults of all kinds. We recommend, however, consume with caution as it may be difficult to digest.
Great benefits to the intestinal flora to reduce harmful bacteria, rich in natural sugars, high in protein, iron, calcium, manganese, zinc, potassium, etc, far more than most meat products. Gluten-free and is kind to the stomach, making it an excellent alternative for people with weak stomach or celiac. The carob has been discredited because it was once considered a food for animals. Currently you can find carob flour with which you can prepare many dishes. This flour is soluble in liquids and requires no cooking, can be used for soups, desserts and other dishes.
Other vegetables that are among the food for the XXI century are peas, , chickpeas, etc. To learn more about it, do not hesitate to buy the book Health Food XXI Century, by Laura Kohan, Local-Global editorial, which also gives you tips for you to learn to cook, to facilitate cooking and I propose a wonderful recipes.
Always seek to acquire legumes at a place that certifies their quality, i.e. the product is harvested without pesticides or toxic agents.
Note: all wealth is the result of knowledge. And health is one of those things that should not be searched, but experienced every day: be lucky is to live with knowledge. Insist that the food is the foundation of a healthy, creative and joyful life, wanting to share one way of living full and free.