Food Focus: Beans
Beans, or legumes, including peas and lentils, are an excellent source of plant-based protein. Beans are found in most traditional cultures as a staple food, offering grounding and strengthening properties that enhance endurance. They offer a highly usable, highly absorbable source of calcium for the body. A very inexpensive source of high nutrition, beans can be rich, delicious and satisfying.
Lack of sexual energy is often due to overtaxed adrenal glands and kidneys. Beans are known for strengthening these organs (ever noticed the shape of a bean?) and can help restore vital energy as well as sexual energy.
Beans have a reputation for causing digestive distress, but this is usually because they have been undercooked or improperly prepared. To help reduce gas-forming properties, soak beans overnight prior to cooking, increase cooking time, add spices like bay leaf, oregano or cumin, or add kombu (a sea vegetable) when cooking.
Recipe of the Month: Easy Beans and Greens
- Prep time: 10 minutes
- Cooking time: 10 minutes
- Yield: 2-3 servings
- 1 can black beans (or pinto, red, kidney—your choice)
- 1 bunch collard greens (or kale, spinach—your choice)
- your favorite toppings, such as salsa, avocado or guacamole
- In a medium saucepan, heat drained beans. Add your favorite seasonings, if desired.
- Fill a separate medium saucepan with 1-2 inches of water and bring to a boil.
- Wash and chop greens (you can use the stems, too) and add to boiling water.
- Cook for 2-3 minutes until greens are bright green and tender. Drain off water.
- On a plate, arrange a portion of the greens, top with a portion of the beans and finish with toppings of your choice.
© 2010 Integrative Nutrition 5/10
Check out my posts on Beans, Beans The Magical Fruit… for more information on tips on how to prepare beans.
Here are some of my favorite bean recipes:
- Baked Artichoke and Spinach Dip
- White Bean Mash
- Thanksgiving Tart
- Chocolate Chipotle Corn and Black Bean Soup
- Polenta Pizza with White Bean Sauce
- Bean Burgers
- Low-Fat Black Bean and Corn Tamales
- Black Eyed Pea Burgers
- Creamy Fava Bean Pasta