Black beans and their benefits

Black beans and their benefits

Beans are among the oldest foods known to man, forming an important part of our diet since ancient times.

The common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris) began to be cultivated around 7000 B.C. in America and when the conquistadors from the Iberian Peninsula arrived in the New World, there were species of various sizes, colors and flavors, such as the very tasty black bean.

This legume stands out for being an excellent source of protein and fibre, as well as vitamins and minerals. However, the greatest health benefits of black beans are found in their high concentration of antioxidants.

  • Antioxidant Properties

The antioxidant effect that we all wish to find in food is present in the bean, given the content of anthocyanins. These substances belong to the group of flavonoids, widely known for their power to inhibit free radicals.

Needless to say, free radicals are dangerous because they are unstable and highly reactive molecules, which when interacting with neighboring molecules, generate new radicals around them. This can create a chain reaction that becomes indefinite if antioxidants do not intervene.

It has been shown that the darker the bean cover, the higher the anthocyanin content, with the black bean variety having the highest concentration of such antioxidants. The anthocyanin content is approximately 214 mg per 100 g of black beans.

Thus, they provide natural antioxidants that help prevent cellular oxidative stress, responsible for diseases such as arteriosclerosis and inflammation, Alzheimer’s disease, cardiovascular disease, immune system problems, diabetes, eye disorders and many types of cancer.

  • Anti-aging properties

The anti-aging effect of black beans is closely related to the antioxidant properties described above. The anthocyanins and other flavonoids present in black beans prevent the signs of premature aging caused by free radicals generated by exposing the skin to ultraviolet light.

Free radicals often cause the breakdown of collagen and elastin and can cause wrinkles, an effect that is reduced by the flavonoids present in beans.

  • Detoxifying properties

These properties are given by the presence of molybdenum, which is a trace element necessary to form and activate several important enzymes in the detoxification of the human body.  One of the enzymes favored by the presence of molybdenum is aldehyde oxidase, responsible for neutralizing acetaldehyde, which is a toxin that comes from the metabolism of several substances in our body and has carcinogenic properties.

Molybdenum also provides a detoxifying effect through the activation of the enzyme sulfite oxidase, which is responsible for converting sulphites (potentially harmful) into sulphates (harmless). The action of this enzyme helps to properly metabolize the amino acids methionine and cysteine, which are part of the proteins that the body needs to build muscle tissue and produce neurotransmitters needed in the function of the central nervous system.

Thus, molybdenum is a mineral that should not be lacking in the diet of a bodybuilder interested in building muscle mass.

Molybdenum is also key in the creation of uric acid, which is a waste product of protein and carbohydrate metabolism; therefore, it is another reason why it is considered a detoxifier.

There are many properties of molybdenum, but the best known is its indispensable role in the metabolism and intestinal absorption of iron. Our diet is very low in molybdenum and the consumption of beans can help us acquire this important mineral.

  • Low glycemic index

Black beans have a glycemic index of 30, so it is considered a low glycemic index (potential to raise blood glucose) food. This type of food is slowly absorbed into the bloodstream, which helps prevent blood glucose spikes and allows us to control sweet food cravings.

Most of the carbohydrates in beans are complex, such as starch and dietary fiber, while the fraction of sugars (mono-, di-, and oligosaccharides) is significantly lower. In addition, of the total starch contained in black beans, 65% corresponds to starches that are resistant to digestion, ideal for maintaining our healthy intestinal flora.

Nutritional value

Protein: Black beans provide us with most of the essential amino acids for protein synthesis. For every 100 g of beans, 20 g are protein and the black bean variety has the highest amount. Unlike meat, they contain very little saturated fat and no cholesterol, which makes them essential for people who follow a healthy diet, especially for vegetarians.

Because of their high protein content, they are an alternative to red meat, so they can help maintain a fast metabolism and active lifestyle. This makes them recommended for recovery after exercise or weight lifting.

Fiber: An adequate fiber diet is associated with a healthy body weight. This is because fibers are substances that are not well digested in the digestive tract and help you feel full with a minimum amount of calories.

Men should take 38 g of fibre per day and women 25 g to obtain the recommended daily intake.  Cooked beans provide 7 g of fibre in half a cup, so it is recommended that they are included in the diet several times a week.

The fibres present in this legume are the soluble and insoluble ones. The former helps good cardiovascular health, regulates the body’s sugar levels, which makes them ideal for diabetic patients; in addition, it reduces the possibility of suffering from high cholesterol. The second one regulates the intestinal transit and prevents constipation. It is very useful for people who suffer from hemorrhoids and other disorders in the colon.

Essential vitamins and minerals: They are rich in vitamins, especially in B vitamins, such as thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3) and vitamin B9 or folic acid. The latter is required for DNA synthesis and repair, cell division and growth, among other functions.

Of all the varieties, black beans are the ones that have the highest contribution of iron, since one cup provides 25% of the minimum daily iron requirement. Iron is an essential mineral used for the transport of oxygen by red blood cells and its deficiency causes anemia.

It can be difficult to get enough magnesium in the diet, and this mineral is important for preventing osteoporosis, because of its role in calcium absorption. Magnesium is ideal to help control blood pressure, prevent the formation of blood clots and therefore facilitate circulation.  Beans provide 19% of the daily value of this mineral.

They are a good source of potassium, which helps maintain normal heart rhythm, important for muscle function and proper water balance in the body. They also contain other minerals such as calcium, phosphorus, zinc, selenium, manganese etc.


The effects previously discussed in relation to the presence of anthocyanins and their action as antioxidants, also explain their anti-cancer property, since free radicals are an important source of cellular damage. It has been possible to establish a relationship between the habitual consumption of foods rich in flavonoids and fiber to a lower incidence of a great variety of malignant tumors.


El chocho is an ancient food

Benefits of Chocho

  • Nutritional Composition

The chocho is a legume, whose nutritional composition is: 38% protein, 24% carbohydrates, 24% vegetable fiber, 6% unsaturated fat and 7.5% minerals. To make you even more aware of what pussy provides, I would like to tell you that it has minerals such as iron, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and zinc, contains vitamin B12 and all the essential amino acids.

  • Recommended food for diabetics and people with hypercholesterolemia (high cholesterol).

The consumption of chochos in diabetic people, reduces the levels of glucose in the blood and diminishes the factors of risk of cardiovascular problems like the tension and the high cholesterol.

  • Suitable for Celiacs and lactose intolerant.

We continue to discover more advantages: people who are gluten and/or lactose intolerant can also benefit from the nutritional power of this food.
Its high fibre content translates into great satiating power, so you’ll feel full right away and won’t feel as much like snacking throughout the day. It can help you reduce those extra pounds, in a healthy way and without going hungry.

Oregano and its benefits

Benefits of oregano

There are several health benefits of oregano. Those discussed below are based on scientific studies, references to which can be found at the end of the article.

  • Reduces inflammation and associated diseases

Because oregano is rich in antioxidants such as carvacrol or thymol, it can reduce inflammation and the diseases it causes, such as diabetes, heart disease or autoimmune diseases. To give you an idea, oregano has more than 42 times the antioxidant power of the apple.

Its content of carvacrol, the chemical compound that produces its aroma, also has anti-inflammatory properties. On the other hand, its content in cariophilene can help treat osteoporosis or arteriosclerosis.

If taken with other antioxidant-rich foods, especially vegetables and fruits, oregano can be a rich source of ontioxidants that help improve health and prevent disease.

  • Managing Type 2 Diabetes

Greek oregano (Origanum vulgare), marjoram (Origanum majorana), rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) and Mexican oregano (Lippia graveolens) are concentrated sources of bioactive compounds.

Herbs popularly used in recipes, such as Greek oregano (Origanum vulgare), rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis), and Mexican oregano (Lippia graveolens), have been found to have the ability to control type 2 diabetes, much like certain drugs do.

This is because these culinary plants have in their composition the phytochemicals eryodictyol, naringenine, hispiduline, cirsimaritine and carnosol, which inhibit the protein DPP-IV, which is involved in the development of type 2 diabetes.

  • Cancer prevention

The antioxidants in oregano help neutralize free radicals and prevent the development of cancer, and may even help kill cancer cells.

One of the components of oregano, carvacrol, may help suppress the growth and spread of colon cancer. On the other hand, the species Origanum majorana may slow the progression of breast cancer.

More studies are needed to understand this property, although a healthy lifestyle, with exercise, low stress and a healthy diet, is necessary to enhance its effects.

  • Combats pathogenic bacteria

Oregano also has some components with antibacterial properties. Particularly oil of oregano can block the growth of the bacteria Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, whose pathogenic strains can cause diarrhea and cystic fibrosis respectively.

  • Reduces viral infections

In addition to helping control infections from disease-causing bacteria, oregano can fight certain viruses, thanks to its antioxidants thymol and carvacrol.

Specifically, carvacrol can help inactivate viruses of the genus Norovirus, which can cause nausea, stomach pain and diarrhea. Thymol and carvacrol can also inactivate herpes simplex virus.

  • Other possible benefits

According to The Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database, oregano can also be used for

Cold sores.
menstrual cramps


Lentils and their extraordinary benefits

Benefits of lentils

The richness of the nutritional composition of lentils makes them great allies for health.


Lentils are almost totally fat-free, so, contrary to what is sometimes believed, they are a light foodstuff that provides only 250 kcal per dish (about 80 grams of dried lentils).

This makes them suitable for weight control menus. Cooked simply, as in vegetable stews or in salads, they can be the basis for very nutritious and tasty menus.


Lentils benefit the nervous system due to their content of B-group vitamins, especially B1, B2, B5, B6 and folic acid. With cooking, part of their contribution is lost, but if they are taken in sprouts it is increased.


The recognized iron richness of lentils justifies their indication in case of iron deficiency. To enhance their assimilation, they should be eaten with a food rich in vitamin C, such as a salad with red peppers or an orange for dessert.


The soluble and insoluble fibre in lentils (10% of their weight) absorbs cholesterol, preventing it from reaching the bloodstream.

In addition, lentils contain phytates and antioxidants with an anti-cholesterolemic effect, improving cell metabolism and the use of fatty acids as a source of energy for the cell.

Source: cuerpomente

The chickpea and its benefits

The chickpea and its benefits

1. Excellent source of protein

This is possibly one of the most well-known benefits of chickpeas. Its high protein content makes it ideal for vegetarians who want to make sure they get the nutrients they need from a vegetable source.

However, chickpea proteins are not ‘complete’, which means that they should not be the only source of protein you choose.

Even so, they are still an optimal source for growth and development. They also contribute, on the other hand, to proper wound healing.

2. Combats chronic diseases

Another benefit of chickpeas is their antioxidant content. These include:

Vitamins (A, B-complex, C, D, E and K)

All of these help reduce the body’s oxidative stress and prevent chronic diseases produced by free radicals, which cause your healthy cells to begin to mutate. For example, these antioxidants will help protect your body against:

Coronary heart disease.
Macular degeneration.
Cognitive disorders like Alzheimer’s.
Parkinson’s disease.

3. Decreases digestive problems

Digestion could be considered as the starting point for the health of your body. For this reason, making sure it is working properly can be the key to overall well-being.

Thanks to its high levels of fibre, the benefits of chickpeas for your digestion are

It allows you to maintain your regular bowel movements.
Reduces inflammation.
Eliminates cramping.
Reduces abdominal distention and constipation.
Helps your body absorb all the nutrients from food.


4. Control your diabetes

The ability to regulate blood sugar is one of the most outstanding benefits of chickpeas. This is important for everyone, not just people with diabetes.

If you don’t already have diabetes, chickpeas control insulin levels in your blood. This is particularly good if you have recently been diagnosed with metabolic syndrome or pre-diabetes.

If you already have diabetes, chickpeas can help keep it under control. Best of all, because of their texture, we can eat them as a substitute for other foods that are much higher in calories.

You may be interested: According to one study, walking after meals is good for type 2 diabetes

5. Weight loss

Thanks to the high nutrient density of chickpeas, combined with their dietary fiber content and low calorie intake, they can help you lose weight.

Fiber helps your body feel fuller for longer. On the other hand, the mixture of nutrients and minerals keeps your body energetic, active and prevents fatigue.

6. Strong bones

Minerals concentrated in chickpeas include:


This means that chickpeas are great allies for your bone health. Many of these minerals are essential when it comes to improving the density of your bones and preventing age-related diseases, such as osteoporosis.

Read also: Magnesium, a Complete Mineral

7. Genetic defects

Folic acid is an important B-complex vitamin. It is most often associated with women because of the potential benefits it can have on them. Low levels of folic acid are closely related to neural tube defects and other complications with the birth of babies.

So adding chickpeas to your diet, especially during pregnancy, is a great way to ensure that your baby is very healthy.

8. Protect your heart health

Your cardiovascular health is enhanced by the benefits of chickpeas in two different ways. Firstly, their high levels of soluble fibre allow the elimination of cholesterol and provide a better balance. This helps you prevent arteriosclerosis, heart attacks and strokes.

On the other hand, the only fats in chickpeas are omega-3 fatty acids. As you may know, these are beneficial polyunsaturated fats that the body needs to protect the heart and help reduce any inflammation that may occur.

Source: (better with health)

The benefits of basil

The benefits of basil

Apart from being an exceptional condiment, its properties make it very beneficial for our health:

  • It stops fever and fights colds

In cases of high fever, it is recommended to boil basil leaves with cardamom and drink it as an infusion.

  • Relieves cough and asthma
  • Basil is an active ingredient in cough and bronchitis syrups. To make a homemade one you can boil its leaves in water and drink it. For a sore throat, gargling with this boiled water will also work.
  • Strengthens the immune system
  • Its chemicals promote the body’s production of antibodies that fight infection.
  • It can eliminate bad breath and fight oral diseases
  • Some home remedies claim that letting it dry and brushing your teeth with basil solves many oral problems.
  • Kidney function
  • Helps the kidneys to function properly.
  • Helps digestion
  • Basil tea can treat stomach problems such as constipation, heartburn and heavy digestion.
  • Relieves headaches It acts as a muscle relaxant and anti-inflammatory.


The benefits of corn

The benefits of corn

Corn is an important food in your diet because it is rich in vitamin B and C. It has folic acid, pantothenic acid, phosphorus, magnesium and has fiber. Its high level of carbohydrates and proteins makes it an indispensable element to provide us with energy and benefits to our health.

Here I present you twelve benefits that corn brings to your health:

  • It can prevent colon cancer because it contains a large amount of folic acid.
  • It is healthy for pregnancy. Corn is home to high levels of vitamin B, which reduces the risk of babies being born with defects of the brain and spinal cord. This is why it is ideal for pregnant women. In fact, since 1996 the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has asked that some cereals, such as corn, be fortified with folic acid-which is in the B-vitamin ‘family’.
  • It reduces the risk of heart attack. As we have said, the vitamin B1 in corn decreases homocysteine and therefore also reduces the risk of a heart attack. But it is important to note that antioxidants, which are very noticeable in corn, prevent fats from being oxidized. It is precisely this oxidation that is harmful to the blood vessels and is prevented by the antioxidants.
  • It lowers the risk of having a stroke. For the same reason as explained in point 3: vitamin B1 lowers the level of homocysteine.
  • It can defend you from Alzheimer’s because corn has more antioxidants than any other cereal. Antioxidants protect our body from free radicals and for this reason they may help prevent this degenerative disease. This cereal is also high in vitamin B.
  • It is healthy for maintaining your cognitive abilities because it is rich in antioxidants.
  • It fights stress because pantothenic acid promotes the function of the adrenal glands.
  • It is low in calories. Half a cup of corn (about 60 grams) contains about 86 calories. It is best to eat this cereal without butter, ketchup or spices.

The benefits of soy

The benefits of soy

Soya is a species of the legume family (Fabaceae), grown for its seeds. The soya bean and its by-products (mainly oil and soya flour) are used in human food. How does this small seed benefit us? Nutritionist Laura Romero, from the Nutrest center, tells us.

Health benefits

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recognized that 25 grams per day of soy protein can reduce cholesterol levels, and therefore, heart problems.
The high protein value of legumes makes them a great substitute for meat in vegan cultures. It is limiting in one amino acid (methionine), so it is important that it is combined with a cereal (rice, quinoa, oats) in order to form a good quality protein.


  • It helps in menopausal and menstrual disorders by presenting isoflavones, a type of phytoestrogen.
  • Soy-based foods are recommended for obese and diabetic patients, because they have a low glycemic index.
  • One study suggests that foods with isoflavones, such as soy, can lower blood pressure. These substances help the body produce nitric oxide, which helps dilate blood vessels.
  • It acts as an antioxidant and moisturizer for the skin, preventing a dry face and stimulating collagen formation.
  • The main property of soy is protein, it acts as a skin restorer to improve the texture of hands, feet, elbows and knees.
  • Soybean oil also serves to promote hair growth, and to add strength and shine to hair.
  • Soya provides dry and damaged hair with softness, shine and moisture.

Wheat and its health benefits

Benefits of wheat

Wheat (Triticum spp) is both the plant and the edible grain belonging to the grass family, which are divided into wild and cultivated.

There are many health-related benefits and properties of wheat, but we must bear in mind that to take advantage of all these benefits it is advisable to consume whole wheat.

We must get used to using products derived from wheat (bread, pasta, cookies, muffins, etc.) that have been made with wholemeal flour because it is the best way to take advantage of all the nutrients of this cereal.

Diabetes: the high fiber content of whole wheat and its slow absorption carbohydrates keep blood glucose levels low.
Regulation of the intestinal transit: the fiber of the whole wheat regulates the intestinal transit coming very well for constipated people
Breast cancer prevention: whole wheat contains a large amount of phytosterols that trap the excess estrogen we take in our diet and that can promote the development of hormone-dependent tumors. In addition, the vitamin E contained in wheat germ and found in whole wheat and the contribution of selenium has a great antioxidant effect protecting cells from oxidative damage that can trigger tumour processes. It is highly recommended to introduce whole wheat in menopausal women with hormone replacement therapy.
Prevention of cardiovascular diseases: the content of fibre and phytosterols helps to maintain low blood cholesterol levels by reducing the absorption of cholesterol from the diet and trapping bile salts that intervene in digestion and eliminating them with the faeces. In addition, vitamin E and selenium prevent the oxidation of atheroma plaques by preventing them from clogging up the arteries.
Strengthens hair and nails: for its contribution in vitamins of the group B, zinc and sulphur amino acids
Immune system regulator: minerals such as zinc and selenium stimulate the immune system


Spinach and its nutritional properties

Spinach and its nutritional properties

Spinach is one of the green leafy vegetables that provides us with vitamins, minerals and fiber, as well as other very important substances to take care of our health such as phytonutrients.

It is a vegetable that we can use in many recipes: we can add spinach to lasagne, vegetable puree, sautéed with chickpeas, or we can also eat the spinach raw and fresh in salads and in smoothies or green juices, etc.

Spinach belongs to the botanical family of the Quenopodiaceae, as do chard and quinoa.

In this article we tell you what is the nutritional value of spinach and its properties and benefits for health and the contraindications of consumption of spinach.

Nutritional value of spinach

Of 100 grams of spinach, 90 are water. It has vegetable protein, a very low carbohydrate content, and the fat in spinach is even lower.  On the other hand, it is high in fiber.

Of the minerals in spinach we can highlight the potassium, calcium, sodium, phosphorus, magnesium, iron, zinc, iodine and selenium.
The vitamins with greater presence in the spinach are vitamins C, E, A, carotenes, folic acid or B9, niacin or B3 and riboflavin or B2.

Spinach has only 18 kcal per 100 grams and therefore is often consumed in weight loss diets.

14 health benefits of spinach consumption
  1. The antioxidant action of spinach helps us fight the damage caused in our body by free radicals.
  2. They take care of our sight by delaying or preventing the appearance of macular degeneration or cataracts. This is due to the content of beta-carotene (vitamin A of vegetable origin), which is almost as high as in the case of carrots.
  3. They stimulate the functioning of our immune system.
  4. Spinach contributes to reducing the probability of suffering from cardiovascular and degenerative diseases.
  5. The content of soluble and insoluble fiber in spinach will help us prevent constipation, colon diseases and maintain a good intestinal transit.
  6. The vitamin C in spinach participates in many of the functions that take place in our body: formation of red and white blood cells, formation of collagen, bones and teeth …
  7. This green leafy vegetable also promotes the proper functioning of our muscular and nervous system.
  8. Spinach is a food that contains iodine, an essential nutrient that promotes the proper functioning of the thyroid gland. This gland regulates our metabolism.
  9. The magnesium provided by this vegetable is important for maintaining a favorable activity in our intestine, our muscles and the immune system.
  10. As with the rest of the foods of vegetable origin that have iron, it is interesting to accompany its consumption with foods rich in vitamin C to increase the absorption of this mineral. In this way we contribute to prevent iron deficiency anemia.
  11. It is a food rich in water, low in carbohydrates and fats and with a high content of fiber. This makes spinach an excellent choice for overweight or obese people who want to lose weight and are dieting. It will keep us hydrated, nourished and satiated.
  12. Spinach may help reduce the risk of diseases such as cancer due to its content of antioxidant compounds. In any case, a diet based on vegetables and fruits, eliminating or reducing the consumption of processed products and leading a life as active and full as possible, are the basis for good health and prevent or delay the onset of diseases of all kinds .
  13. It is a vegetable with a good supply of folates or vitamin B9, whose consumption should be increased by women during pregnancy and breastfeeding to prevent damage to the baby’s development.
  14. Spinach can be a suitable vegetable for people with hypertension or high blood pressure.