My first exposure to lentils was a cheap and unpalatable watery soup. After that I ticked lentils off my “to try” list and decided that I would never again go that route. In spite of that, while I was studying dietetics we would consistently hear about legumes and how they are necessary and very beneficial in our diet, but in the back of my mind I classified this information as only relevant to people that don’t eat meat.
When me and my husband got to Korea red meat was too expensive to consume during the normal day to day and we were forced to try other options. One night some of our friends prepared Nachos for a get together, but instead of mince meat they used lentils. I remember how me and Arno made a stop at McDonalds before getting to their house just to get our tummies sufficiently filled. That night, however, I was pleasantly surprised
and from there I became a massive campaigner for lentils. Not only are they much more economically viable than meat, they are delicious, versatile and very healthy!
The benefits of lentils
The first amazing benefit of lentils is their fiber. They have a very good 7.9 fiber per 100g. Adequate fiber intake serves as an important factor in weight loss by functioning as a “bulking agent” in the digestive system. The high fiber content in lentils also helps keep the digestive tract healthy, which in turn, prevents constipation and promotes regular bowel movements.
The second thing that really made a big impact in my life was how the consumption of lentils lead to a direct decrease in fatigue. Iron deficiency is a common cause of fatigue. Not getting enough iron in the diet can affect how efficiently the body uses energy. Plants provide nonheme iron, and lentils are a particularly good source. Several studies have also demonstrated that the consumption of lentils is immensely connected to the reduction in the incidence of diseases such as diabetes, obesity, cancers and cardiovascular diseases, due to its bio-active compounds.
So next time you are confronted with the lentil, remember that it is perhaps the world’s most versatile, indestructible food and give it a go, you will be pleasantly surprised.