Lentils: An Inexpensive & Healthy Superfood
Are lentils healthy?
Although many people do not approve of a grain-rich diet (we evolved on an almost completely grain-free diet for thousands of years and this continued for a few centuries even after the invention of fire), lentils are a different story in my book. They are very high in protein – in fact uncooked lentils contain the same amount of protein percentage-wise as lean meat – about 25%. They are also very high in soluble fiber. Several studies have shown that adding lentils to fast-digesting carbohydrates, like rice, slows down the glucose release and insulin secretion, which gives you much steadier energy levels. In addition to that, lentils cost very little and are very easy to prepare and store.
Benefits of lentils
Here are in no particular order the benefits of lentils:
High in fiber – they keep your digestive system clean, help with healthy gut bacteria and lower cholesterol.
High in protein – this no only means they are nutritious , but that they make you feel full. A common reason for constant food cravings is low-protein intake, mainly linked to cereal snacks, like biscuits.
Cheap – Lentils cost a fraction of what meat and other high-protein sources cost.
Vegan – I am not a big proponent of a meat-free diet, but for those who are, lentils are an excellent ‘replacement’ for meat.
The only drawback of lentils is that if you do not prepare them well and add spices, they do not taste very good! However, following a basic recipe for a lentil stew makes them taste quite well. It is recommended to soak lentils in water for a few hours, which reduces the cooking time greatly.
I personally eat lentils almost every day as I find them very quick and easy to prepare. They also make me feel full and keep my metabolism firing.
Sprouting lentils improves amino-acid profile even more and triggers the beans to produce Vitamin c. About three ounces of cooked sprouted lentils contain about 15mg of Vitamin C. It also makes them much more digestible. Sprouting lentils is very easy – you soak them in water for 8-10 hours, drain and let them sit for a day or two. You will see the little sprouts forming in no time!
Posted by Angelina Wright on February 12th