With an impressive nutrient profile: iron to help energy levels by ensuring oxygen reaches all cells, zinc for immune function, protein, for .. well, everything, B vitamins including folate to support carbohydrate breakdown and DNA synthesis (respectively), fibre to enhance satiety and digestion, plus complex carbohydrates for lasting energy; legumes are advantageous to most peoples diets. Alongside the above, there is no cholesterol and minimal fat, meaning that they are promote cardiovascular health, with inverse relationships between their intake and the development of coronary heart disease, stroke, diabetes and high blood pressure; as well as the potential to reduce LDL cholesterol levels.
Paleo advocates note that within the legume, they contain anti nutrients such as lectins and saponins which destroy the guts intestinal lining, thus encouraging leaky gut syndrome, a precursor for autoimmune diseases such as Crohn’s, Irritable Bowel Disease and Rheumatoid Arthritis. Heightening the gut permeability, it allows foreign particles to enter the blood stream, thus activating the immune system: resulting in inflammation, and if there is chronic, ongoing presence of foreign, toxic substances in our blood stream, leads to impaired immune functioning, slowed digestion and constipation and poor absorption of nutrients. Paleo advocates should note that the process of fermenting legumes destroys many of the toxic compounds which they are wary of, in particular, lectin. Boiling is another effective method to reduce the adverse substances found within legumes.
In conclusion, there are powerful properties of legumes that encourage consumption: an incredible source of protein, iron and zinc, nutrients which are typically associated with animal protein; however in comparison, legumes are free from cholesterol and fat. Even if you are a meat eater, the presence of fibre, complex carbohydrates and micronutrients such as magnesium and potassium found within this food family make it reasonable to be added to your diet. To help destroy the anti nutrients present, ensure legumes are boiled or fermented prior to consumption. Further, be careful to consume in moderate and not excessive amounts: the detrimental impact upon the gut has an accumulative effect. For individuals who already have digestive problems, it is recommended that they avoid the consumption of legumes, particularly while the gut is inflamed as it will aggravate the symptoms.