Black Beans: An Easy, and Delicious Way to Add Protein and Fiber to Your Diet
Black beans are a versatile and flavorful addition to both a vegetarian and nonvegetarian diet. As a member of the legume family, they have a reputation for being high in protein and fiber, and they don’t disappoint. With 7 grams of fiber per ½ cup cooked beans, they provide a good portion of your daily fiber goal, and can make you feel fuller for longer. Since protein is such as integral part of the post bariatric weight loss surgery diet, black beans are also a good choice as they provide 7 grams of protein per ½ cup cooked beans. In addition to protein and fiber, black beans pack a powerful dose of antioxidants and minerals, such as iron, calcium, phosphorus, zinc, folate, saponins, anthocyanins, quercetin, copper, and zinc. These compounds help contribute to black beans purported benefits, such as maintaining bone health, lowering blood pressure, warding off heart disease, preventing cancer, promoting bowel regularity, increasing satiety and promoting weight loss. The fiber in black beans has also been linked to improvements in blood glucose levels, which is especially important for diabetics and those at risk for diabetes.
Black beans can be easy to incorporate into your diet without much effort. They can be found canned, frozen, or dried. Rinse canned beans with water to reduce the sodium content.
Here are some ideas for incorporating black beans into your diet:
- add them into your salad
- mix them with ground beef or turkey for tacos
- add them to your chili
- make black bean soup, or add them to a chicken tortilla soup or vegetable soup
- make a side dish with roasted corn, onions, diced peppers, tomatoes, and cilantro
- make them into a dip (recipe provided below)
Mexican Black Bean Dip
- 2 cans black beans, rinsed and drained
- ½ chopped onion
- ½ cup cilantro
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 1 clove garlic
- ¼ teaspoon each cumin, salt, pepper, and chili powder
- a dash of chipotle powder
Combine all ingredients into a food processor. Blend until smooth. Enjoy with red or green pepper slices, carrots, or sweet potato tortilla chips.