Posted on March 25, 2014
Written by Diana Cullum-Dugan, RDN, LDN
Interesting synergy of the Universe – I’m eating a healthy serving of pinto beans doused with substantial spoonfuls of salsa and open my mail. Lo and behold, the Dry Bean Quarterly. Now, you think I kid you, but you never know what finds home in a dietitian’s mailbox.
With many of us either eating to prevent or recover from disease, I was curious to read that eating beans reduces cancer risk. In the Nurses’ Health Study II, eating common beans (as opposed to soybeans, which are oily) and lentils was associated with a significant reduction in breast cancer risk. Significant in research is powerful – it might be a small change in a large population but the change rates high on the board.
Dr. Henry Thompson, the author of the Dry Bean Quarterly, did a pre-clinical trial of his own – just to see if the change in risk was real. It’s keen that a food staple like beans that offers a rich source of protein, resistant starch (not as readily taken up in the bloodstream, thereby keeping blood sugar more constant), and soluble fiber can also keep our breasts cancer-free! The results of his study showed that cancer cells were inhibited by eating beans. Hence, he now recommends at least one-half cup of beans or lentils daily, and as much as 1 1/2 cups of cooked beans a day if you’re adventurous. For more info, log onto www.beaninstitute.com.
Beans, beans, good for your body, the you more you eat, the more you rest — with satisfaction that you’ve done a lot in preventing this disease.