Source of protein – How to prepare healthy legumes – healing practice

Nutrition: Prepare legumes properly

protein It is the third main nutrient after carbohydrates and fats and it is vital for us. Protein is involved in the formation of muscles and bones, among other things. Our body must therefore regularly with the nutritious Be attended. vegetables They are excellent protein source. Experts explain how to prepare them properly.

The cells of the human body are constantly renewed. Therefore, they depend on a regular protein intake, explains the German Nutrition Society (DGE). Legumes are among the best sources of plant-based protein. But how are they best prepared?

Legumes are rich in healthy ingredients

Legumes are rich in vegetable proteins, minerals such as potassium, magnesium and iron, as well as fiber that promotes health. The vitamin content is also high, especially B vitamins such as thiamin (vitamin B1), riboflavin (vitamin B2) and folic acid, reports the Federal Center for Nutrition (BZfE).

Legumes have a carbohydrate content of about 10 to 20 percent, of which about 75 percent is starch. Due to the dietary fibers they contain, they normally only slightly increase the blood sugar level, so they are also very suitable for people with diabetes.

So there is much to be said for bringing beans, lentils and chickpeas to the table more often, also instead of a meat meal, the South Tyrol consumer center writes in a recent press release.


Dried beans are versatile, have a long shelf life, and are also cheap to buy. However, before they can be eaten, they must first be cooked. “To reduce cooking time and improve digestibility, legumes should be soaked in water overnight”advises Silke Raffeiner, nutrition expert at the South Tyrolean Consumer Center (VZS).

“To do this, the beans, peas or chickpeas are rinsed under running water in a colander and left in a bowl with plenty of cold water.” In the case of lentils, it is usually enough to soak them for an hour before preparing them. Peeled lentils and peeled peas can be cooked directly without soaking them first.

The soaking water is poured off, the pulses are rinsed again and brought to a boil with three times the amount (by volume) of fresh, salted water or vegetable broth. For hard, hard water, it is recommended to add a pinch of baking soda (baking soda).

Acidic ingredients like vinegar or lemon should only be added towards the end of the cooking time, otherwise they will harden the shells of the legumes.

Cooking time varies depending on the type: peeled red lentils are already cooked after about ten minutes, chickpeas need up to two hours.

After cooking, peas, beans, and lentils can be used to make soups (eg, “pasta e fagioli”), sauces (eg, lentil “bolognese” instead of minced meat). Bolognese), purees, stews (eg “chilli con carne”, “Chili sin carne”), salads, spreads (eg “Hummus”) or fried balls (eg “Falafel “).

According to experts, dried beans can be kept for up to two years if they are stored in locked containers in a dry, dark place. Canned legumes are already cooked and can be processed immediately after rinsing well under running water.

Avoid swelling

Legumes cause bloating in many people; these are caused by multiple sugars (polysaccharides).

“A thorough rinse -including canned vegetables- before cooking or preparation, a prolonged cooking time, the use of spices such as anise, fennel, caraway, cumin, savory or marjoram help prevent flatulence ”, explains the VZS nutritionist.

In pureed form, legumes are generally easier to digest than whole legumes. Getting used to it also plays a role: if you have barely eaten legumes before, you can start with small amounts and slowly increase them so that the digestive tract gradually gets used to the healthy protein source. (ad)

Author and source of information

This text complies with the requirements of the specialized medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been reviewed by medical professionals.

Important note:
This article contains general advice only and should not be used for self-diagnosis or treatment. It cannot replace a visit to the doctor.


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