Baked-beans revival a health boon

A significant increase in demand for baked beans under the COVID-19 shutdown is a boon to Australians’ health, say experts, adding healthy lean plant protein and fibre to diets often lacking both.

As we hunker down at home, many of us have turned to that favourite ‘comfort food’: baked beans. And while navy beans doused in tomato sauce might not look especially appealing, they’re a favourite among nutrition experts, contends Catalyst’s Jodie Boehme in ABC Science News.

According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, she says, just seven per cent of Australian adults and five per cent of children eat enough daily serves of vegetables.

We all need to eat more veg, Boehme notes, and beans and legumes ‘give you a lot of nutritional bang for your buck’. They’re an inexpensive source of protein, packed with iron and other essential minerals (folate, manganese, vitamin B1), with a low glycaemic index (GI) and a high proportion of soluble fibre.

All that fibre helps slow digestion and makes you feel fuller for longer, reducing the urge to snack on unhealthier options. It’s also a reason that beans (and legumes, generally) have been shown to be beneficial in preventing and managing diabetes.

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Source: Baked beans an unlikely nutrition star, and pandemic hit I ABC Science News