The Surprising Health Benefits of Fava Beans

Photo by: Bigstockphoto
Photo by: Bigstockphoto

Fava bean is a legume that belongs to the Fabaceae family. It’s native to North Africa and in Asia. Similar to edamame, fava beans are cultivated for their fruit. The beans are encased in leathery green pods. When the pods are mature, they turn dark brown.

Fava beans are eaten in different ways. You can incorporate it in your favorite dishes or in smoothies. Fresh and dried beans are very easy to cook. You can rehydrate dried beans by soaking them in warm water. If you’re buying them fresh, opt for bright green beans. If you’re keeping the beans for later use, do not remove them from their pods. This helps maintain tenderness and freshness.

Nutritional Value of Fava Beans

Fava beans are low in fat and high in protein. This makes fava beans ideal for dieters and the health conscious alike!

A 100 gram serving of fava beans yields about 66% of your recommended daily allowance of dietary fiber. Dietary fiber is a beneficial compound that aids in weight loss. It also helps lower blood cholesterol and prevent cardiovascular diseases.

Fava beans are also rich in phytonutrients. Phytonutrients are plant-based nutrients that prevent a range of diseases. These compounds promote proper body function and nourish the cells. Phytonutrients in fava beans include plant sterols, isoflavones, and antioxidants.

To prevent weight gain, eat fava beans in smaller portions. 100 grams of fava beans yield about 341 calories.

The Health Benefits of Fava Beans

Packed With Essential Vitamins and Minerals

It’s no secret that fava beans are so nutrient dense. They are rich in essential vitamins and minerals but contain fewer calories than other foods. These beans are a great source of vitamin B1, C, A and K. It’s also a good source of iron and copper. Fava beans are also rich in phosphorus, potassium, and magnesium. If you’re expecting, eat more fava beans. It’s rich in folate and manganese. These nutrients boost the immune system. Manganese is also needed to metabolize carbohydrates and protein. It also prevents high cholesterol level in the blood.

It’s Heart Friendly

Just like most legumes, fava beans are heart friendly. They contain manganese that promote better cardiovascular health. It’s also high in soluble fiber that lower blood glucose and cholesterol levels in the blood. Fiber also binds with fat so it’s eliminated as waste. Best of all, fiber cleanses the colon by flushing out toxic buildup in the gut.

Aids in Weight Loss

A study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that obese individuals who follow a controlled high protein, high fiber diet lost significant weight than those who adopted a controlled, high-carbohydrate, low-fat diet. That’s because the combination of fiber and protein help dieters feel fuller. They also consume more calories. The same study also found that those who adopted a high protein, high fiber diet lost more total fat in the body.

Produce like fava beans is excellent for people who are into high protein, high fiber diet. Because fava beans are delicious and versatile, you’ll have no problems incorporating it into your everyday meals.

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