Sources of proteins but also of carbohydrates, legumes have many nutritional properties. And if they give you stomach problems, here’s how to avoid them
Maria Elena Perrero
Together with vegetables and fruit they represent the basis of the much appreciated Mediterranean diet, yet legumes are consumed less than what would be advisable and are in fact recommended by many doctors and diabetics, both for their intake of micronutrients and for the high presence of dietary fiber beneficial for the microbiotaour second brain, and also protective against important diseases such as diabetes and colorectal cancer. But what exactly are the nutritional properties of legumes? “From a nutritional point of view i legumes they are among the richest and most complete foods that nature provides us. They have a significant amount of fiber and vitamins group B as well as minerals such as calcium, iron and zinc “, dice a Official Active il doctor Sacha Sorrentinonutrition biologist expert in sports nutrition.
The nutritional properties of legumes
In addition to the richness of micronutrients, i legumes have other important peculiarities: “Thanks to the high presence of dietary fiber they favor the sense of satiety – adds Sorrentino -. They are also rich in antioxidantsuseful for counteracting the damage caused by free radicals, and are naturally cholesterol-free, containing very few grassi, purely unsaturated in nature, useful for cardiovascular health. The presence of ferro, especially in red lentils, it helps to counteract anemia and chronic weakness. Also all legumes are gluten-free, so they can be safely consumed by those with celiac disease. Finally, their remarkable content of tryptophanamino acid precursor of serotonin, also makes them an excellent ally for a good mood “.
Legumes: carbohydrates or proteins?
Rich in proteins, i legumes they are at the same time a source of carbohydrates. Should they therefore be considered as a substitute for a cereal dish or a protein source? And which ones are the richest in carbohydrates and which ones provide the most protein? “THE legumes they are unique precisely because they contain both both proteins and carbohydrates. Lentils, along with peanuts and soy, are among the richest legumes in protein, while chickpeas and beans are richer in carbohydrates. Lupins also contain a good amount of protein, and can be used above all as a snack and appetizer in the afternoon, ”explains the nutritionist.
How to counteract legume swelling
L’the only possible contraindication of legumes concerns precisely what is their greatest benefit, namely the considerable presence of fibre. These fibers, in fact, can ferment and cause swelling in some people. But there are tricks to avoid it. “Sense of bloating and bloating they are a possible side effect of legumes due to the large amount of nutrients that cannot be assimilated by the intestine – confirms Sorrentino -. However, there are some tricks that allow you to prevent this condition: soak the legumes for about 12 hours before cooking and, after rinsing them, cook them for a long time with bay leaves, sage or fennel seeds. Another tip is to buy them shelled, because the cuticle slows down digestion. In this way, even those who would not digest them normally will be able to consume them regularly, even two or three times a week “.