Kidney beans are inexpensive, versatile, and offer many health benefits. Adding kidney beans to meals is an easy way to increase protein and fiber intake without adding a lot of calories. Red kidney beans are the most commonly used, but there are also white, purple, and even striped kidney beans.
1 Kidney Beans Nutrition Facts
The following USDA nutritional information is based on 1 ⁄ 2 cup (90 g) red kidney beans, cooked with no added salt or fat.(1)
- Calories: 113.5
- Fat: 0.5g
- Sodium: 198 mg
- Carbohydrates: 20 g
- Fiber: 6.7g
- Sugar: 0.3g
- Protein: 7.8 g
Half a cup of kidney beans provides almost 8 grams of plant-based protein. For this reason, many vegans and vegetarians use kidney beans or other types of legumes to increase their protein intake.
However, kidney beans are not a complete protein. Complete proteins provide all of the essential amino acids that the body cannot produce itself and must therefore be obtained from the diet. To get all of the essential amino acids, you should also make sure to eat whole grains or seeds.
Half a cup of kidney beans contains less than a gram of fat, making them a naturally low-fat food. Most of this small amount of fat is healthy polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fat.
Kidney beans are a low-calorie food that provides a healthy dose of complex carbohydrates. There are three types of carbohydrates in kidney beans.
Most of the carbohydrates in kidney beans come from starch. Starch provides the body with quick energy. Kidney beans also contain a small amount of naturally occurring sugars.
The rest of the carbs in kidney beans are fiber (more than 6 grams in half a cup). Fiber helps stabilize blood sugar, increase satiety, and improve digestive health.(2)
Kidney beans have a glycemic index (GI) of about 24. For reference, foods with a GI of 55 or less are considered low-glycemic foods.(3)
The glycemic load of a 100 gram serving of kidney beans is approximately 9. The glycemic load takes into account the serving size of a food when estimating the effect of the food on blood sugar. It is believed that a glycemic load of less than 10 has little effect on blood sugar response.
1.4 Vitamins and Minerals
A 100-gram serving (just over half a cup) of cooked kidney beans contains 33% of the daily requirement of folic acid. This B vitamin helps boost red blood cell production and offers other health benefits. The same serving also contains thiamine (11% of the daily requirement) and smaller amounts of vitamin K (10%), vitamin B6 (6%), vitamin C, riboflavin, niacin and pantothenic acid.
The minerals in kidney beans include phosphorus (14%) and manganese (22%), a vitamin that regulates the nervous system and improves brain and bone health. They also contain copper (11%), potassium (12%), magnesium (10%) and iron (12%).
2 Health Benefits
Legumes, including kidney beans, have been studied by nutritionists for years. They are widely consumed, inexpensive and grown all over the world. Research suggests that increased consumption of beans has certain health benefits.(4)
2.1 Supports beneficial bacteria
The fiber and resistant starch in kidney beans act as prebiotics, feeding the good bacteria in your gut. This improves digestion.
2.2 Helps maintain a healthy body weight
Replacing energy-rich foods with legumes has a positive impact on obesity. It has been shown to improve the prevention and management of obesity and reduce associated diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and metabolic syndrome.(5)
The study authors recommend substituting beans for high-calorie, high-fat meat dishes (e.g., burgers and sausages) or combining a smaller portion of meat with legumes when cooking these dishes to reduce fat and calories.
2.3 Lowers cholesterol levels
A study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal found that including beans in your diet helps lower LDL cholesterol (also called “bad” cholesterol).(6)
2.4 Improves blood sugar control
Additional studies found that increased consumption of beans, peas, and lentils can help people with and without diabetes better control dietary blood sugar levels over the long term.(7)
3 kidney bean allergies
Although allergies to kidney beans are relatively uncommon, it is a legume and is therefore botanically related to the major allergens such as peanut and soy. In particular, people who are allergic to peanuts, pigeon peas, or chickpeas may also be sensitive to kidney beans.(9)
Symptoms of an allergy to legumes may include facial swelling, difficulty breathing, severe asthma, abdominal pain, nausea, or vomiting. If you suspect you or your child may have an allergy to kidney beans or any other legume, talk to your doctor to get a diagnosis and advice on managing the condition.
4 kidney beans unwanted effects
Kidney beans contain compounds that interfere with nutrient absorption, commonly referred to as “antinutrients.” However, the term is misleading as all plants contain these substances, which only have an effect when consumed in extremely large amounts. The effects of these compounds are negligible at the amounts you are likely to consume.(10)
In addition, the substances are inactivated by soaking and boiling the beans. So unless you have a medical condition that can be affected by these antinutrients (such as iron deficiency anemia), you shouldn’t worry too much about them.(11)
If you’re concerned about the increased gas and bloating that eating beans can cause, there are cooking methods that may help: try adding seaweed to the pot, or simply soaking the beans and discarding the water before cooking. These methods have not been tested in clinical studies, but are worth trying in your own kitchen.
5 types of kidney beans
Kidney beans are a variety of the runner bean (Phaseolus vulgaris) and can come in many colors (white, black, red, or purple) and patterns (spotted, striped, and mottled). Kidney beans are typically purchased canned or dried (bulk or in bags).
Some varieties of canned kidney beans are high in sodium. When buying canned kidney beans, check the label and look for brands that do not contain added salt. Or cook your own dried beans at home. Dry-cooked kidney beans are very low in sodium, at less than 200 mg per half-cup.(1)
6 Kidneybohnen Saison
Beans are available all year round. When buying legumes, look for whole, uncrushed beans that have not come into contact with dirt, dust, or moisture. You can buy dried (uncooked) beans in bags or boxes, but many stores also sell raw kidney beans in bulk so you can buy just the amount you need.
7 kidney bean storage and food safety
Store dried beans in an airtight container in your pantry or other cool, dark place. When stored properly, each type of bean should have a shelf life of up to 12 months. When you cook kidney beans, they stay fresh for about 3 to 5 days if refrigerated in an airtight container.
Prepare 8 kidney beans
Before you cook dried kidney beans, rinse them to remove dirt and dust. Remove any cracked or broken beans and soak them in cold water overnight.
Bring 3 cups of water to a boil and add 1 cup of beans. Simmer for at least 30 minutes, cooking time depending on flavor and your preferred texture. With older beans, the duration of the cooking time increases.
Kidney beans have a mild, creamy, nutty flavor that makes them an easy addition to many dishes. Simply add a handful of beans to your favorite soup, stew or salad recipe for a flavor and nutritional boost. Instead of kidney beans, you can simply use pinto beans or black beans in recipes (and vice versa).
9 kidney bean recipes
Healthy Kidney Bean Recipes You Should Try:
- Rice pan with zucchini and eggplant
- Wraps with beans and avocado cream
- chili without meat
- French fries with chili and sweet potato sauce
- Bean soup with paprika
- Stuffed peppers with rice
Also interesting: * Advantages and disadvantages of a high-fiber diet * The 30 best high-fiber foods and recipes
health is delicious
Integrating healthy foods into your diet is often easier than you think. Combinations of healthy and nutritious foods enliven everyday life, provide more energy and pleasure when eating. Because food should not only be healthy, but taste good, give you strength and make you happy.