Flashback Friday: Cooked Beans or Sprouted Beans?

Flashback Friday: Cooked Beans or Sprouted Beans?
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How do canned versus germinated beans (such as sprouted lentils) compare when it comes to protecting brain cells and destroying melanoma, kidney, and breast cancer cells.

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Beans, chickpeas, split peas, and lentils are packed with nutrients and play a role in the prevention of chronic disease, but most can’t be eaten raw. Boiling is the most common cooking method, which is what’s used to make canned beans, but sprouting is becoming more popular. Which is healthier? There hadn’t been a head-to-head comparisons, until now.

The easiest way to compare is to just measure the quantity of the polyphenol phytonutrients thought to account for some of their protective benefits against chronic disease, for example the anthocyanin pigments that make these particular beans so pretty.

As you can see, sprouted beans have more of some, but less than others, in fact you see that across the board with the other phenolic phytonutrients. More of some; less of others. Because the positive effects of these compounds may be related to their antioxidant capacity, you can compare the overall antioxidant power of boiled versus sprouted beans, for which boiled appears to have a marginal edge, but ideally we’d actually measure physiological effects, like what about boiled versus sprouted against cancer cells. And that’s just what they did.

This is the concentration of raw bean extract needed to cut the breast cancer growth rate in half in a petri dish. Boiled beans do about 40 times better. Same cancer growth inhibition at just a fraction of the concentration, and sprouted beans do about the same.

Now you can’t even eat most beans raw, but I wanted to include them just to show you a fascinating phenomenon. No amount of raw bean extract appears able to totally stop the growth of breast cancer cells, but just small amounts of cooked or sprouted beans can. And same thing with actually killing off cancer. No amount of raw bean extract works, but both boiled and sprouted beans can.

Similar results were found for melanoma, processing the beans—either cooking or sprouting boosted anticancer activity in vitro, but against kidney cancer, raw and boiled worked, but sprouted didn’t at all.

The researchers were also interested in brain protection. Given that elderly persons reporting always eating legumes may be significantly less likely to experience cognitive decline, the researchers decided to compare the protective effects of boiled versus sprouted beans on astrocytes.

Astrocytes are the most abundant type of cell in our brain. They are star-shaped cells that keep our brain running smoothly. Should they become damaged, though, they may an important role in the development in neurodegenerative disorders such as Lou Gehrig’s disease, Alzheimer’s, or Parkinson’s. So if we’re thinking clearly, we should thank our lucky stars.

To see if beans would help protect astrocytes from damage, first they had to make sure bean extracts wouldn’t cause any damage. This is the before, dripping nothing on astrocytes in a petri dish, 100% viability. And this is the after, adding boiled bean extract. Didn’t hurt the cells at all. And sprouted beans seem to even help them grow a little bit. Same thing but this time we’re going to damage the astrocytes with an oxidative chemical that killed off about a quarter of the cells. But with some boiled bean extract on board the astrocytes were protected at the two higher doses, but the sprouted beans didn’t appear to offer significant benefit.

So what’s the takeaway? As far as I’m concerned, we should eat beans in whichever way will get us to eat the most of them.

I do love my lentil sprouts, one of the healthiest snacks on the planet (along with kale chips). It’s amazing that I can create fresh produce in 2 to 3 days on my kitchen counter. Sprouting’s like gardening on steroids! But using canned beans I can get similar nutrition in about 2 to 3 seconds.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Katie Schloer.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Images thanks to Michelle wuz here, cookbookman17JiuckKevin Walsh via Flickr, A Bean Collector’s Window,Niya Prakash, Bruno Pascal via Wikimedia Commons, and Elizabeth Tov.

Beans, chickpeas, split peas, and lentils are packed with nutrients and play a role in the prevention of chronic disease, but most can’t be eaten raw. Boiling is the most common cooking method, which is what’s used to make canned beans, but sprouting is becoming more popular. Which is healthier? There hadn’t been a head-to-head comparisons, until now.

The easiest way to compare is to just measure the quantity of the polyphenol phytonutrients thought to account for some of their protective benefits against chronic disease, for example the anthocyanin pigments that make these particular beans so pretty.

As you can see, sprouted beans have more of some, but less than others, in fact you see that across the board with the other phenolic phytonutrients. More of some; less of others. Because the positive effects of these compounds may be related to their antioxidant capacity, you can compare the overall antioxidant power of boiled versus sprouted beans, for which boiled appears to have a marginal edge, but ideally we’d actually measure physiological effects, like what about boiled versus sprouted against cancer cells. And that’s just what they did.

This is the concentration of raw bean extract needed to cut the breast cancer growth rate in half in a petri dish. Boiled beans do about 40 times better. Same cancer growth inhibition at just a fraction of the concentration, and sprouted beans do about the same.

Now you can’t even eat most beans raw, but I wanted to include them just to show you a fascinating phenomenon. No amount of raw bean extract appears able to totally stop the growth of breast cancer cells, but just small amounts of cooked or sprouted beans can. And same thing with actually killing off cancer. No amount of raw bean extract works, but both boiled and sprouted beans can.

Similar results were found for melanoma, processing the beans—either cooking or sprouting boosted anticancer activity in vitro, but against kidney cancer, raw and boiled worked, but sprouted didn’t at all.

The researchers were also interested in brain protection. Given that elderly persons reporting always eating legumes may be significantly less likely to experience cognitive decline, the researchers decided to compare the protective effects of boiled versus sprouted beans on astrocytes.

Astrocytes are the most abundant type of cell in our brain. They are star-shaped cells that keep our brain running smoothly. Should they become damaged, though, they may an important role in the development in neurodegenerative disorders such as Lou Gehrig’s disease, Alzheimer’s, or Parkinson’s. So if we’re thinking clearly, we should thank our lucky stars.

To see if beans would help protect astrocytes from damage, first they had to make sure bean extracts wouldn’t cause any damage. This is the before, dripping nothing on astrocytes in a petri dish, 100% viability. And this is the after, adding boiled bean extract. Didn’t hurt the cells at all. And sprouted beans seem to even help them grow a little bit. Same thing but this time we’re going to damage the astrocytes with an oxidative chemical that killed off about a quarter of the cells. But with some boiled bean extract on board the astrocytes were protected at the two higher doses, but the sprouted beans didn’t appear to offer significant benefit.

So what’s the takeaway? As far as I’m concerned, we should eat beans in whichever way will get us to eat the most of them.

I do love my lentil sprouts, one of the healthiest snacks on the planet (along with kale chips). It’s amazing that I can create fresh produce in 2 to 3 days on my kitchen counter. Sprouting’s like gardening on steroids! But using canned beans I can get similar nutrition in about 2 to 3 seconds.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Katie Schloer.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Images thanks to Michelle wuz here, cookbookman17JiuckKevin Walsh via Flickr, A Bean Collector’s Window,Niya Prakash, Bruno Pascal via Wikimedia Commons, and Elizabeth Tov.

Doctor's Note

Sprouting is so much fun! I’ve got tons of videos on broccoli sprouts, for example: Biggest Nutrition Bang for Your Buck.

But again, whichever way we like them we should eat them. Why? See:

Mostly I just used canned (until I got an electric pressure cooker). See Canned Beans or Cooked Beans?

Other videos on practical prep tips include:

For even more on the benefits of beans, check out:

And for a tasty bean-filled dinner, try the Three Bean Chili (click through for the free recipe) from my How Not to Die Cookbook.

If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

98 responses to “Flashback Friday: Cooked Beans or Sprouted Beans?

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  1. Canned goods have so much convenience and utility. 1. You can stockpile them for emergencies. 2. You can toss a can of chick peas in your lunch box and not worry about them going bad. 3. You can pull the tab on top and start eating. No plate or bowl or clean up necessary. You can buy a flat (several cans) at a time and you are good for a few weeks. 4. No rinse and drain or cooking.

  2. Don’t forget Hummus… Beans and seeds all wrapped in one. Watch the oil though… It can get up there if you are not careful.
    mitch

    1. Mitch – Hi, I’ll share a couple of tricks I use to keep the oil down in hummous. Traditionally, tahini (sesame paste) is used. If my tahani has separated, I pour off the oil and just use the solids. This lowers the natural oils in the recipe. Peanut butter can be used as a replacement for tahini if you’re out or if you’d like a less expensive option. I do the same there – pour off the oil. Also I do the same if I’m making a peanut sauce. I don’t add olive oil to my hummous but use the liquid from the can of beans when thinning is required. If one misses the taste of the olive oil, just throw in a couple-few green olives to the blender and you’ll get the wonderful taste of the olive without all of the oil. (It takes about 44 olives to make a tablespoon of olive oil).
      And, . . back to the peanut butter, . . you can also just use powdered peanut butter which has all of the fat removed if you’re needing a lower calorie recipe but still want the flavor.

      1. Thanks for all of those ideas, Ruth!

        I buy oil-free hummus and there are oil-free recipes online.

        It is interesting to see how people do things.

        1. You can make an excellent fat free hummus substitute. Just add your favorite herbs and spices to canned, fat free, refried beans.

          1. That is interesting.

            I buy Amy’s refeied black beans.

            I have no idea whether they are fat free.

            I know they are organic and that there is a low sodium version, but I never looked at the fat content. I only eat them once a month or so because I like them in blue corn tortillas and those aren’t fat free. I have been looking for substitutes.

      2. Thanks Ruth,
        Sometimes I’ll throw a bunch of sesame seeds in with a tblspoon of Tahini to make a more “seedy” tahini.. I also add olives but I use black kalamata olives and maybe a touch of EVOO. I like the fiber from the olives. Always go back to the source of the minimally processed product. Fresh lemon juice for acid and a caper or two for salt.. Or Braggs liq aminos
        I like the refried bean “south west” hummos idea. I play around making different bean/seed dips. Goes well with fresh steamed veg..
        mitch

    2. I make a batch of hummus every week for my lunch appetizer on crackers or a slice of bread or with carrot sticks. I do it the old-fashioned way with dried beans that soak in water overnight. I cook them with a spoonful of dried wakabe seaweed that is soaked in water before cooking. I put the beans in a food processor with some of the cooking water. Then I add fresh lemon juice, cloves of garlic, diced shallot, and tahini. Process for 25 seconds.

      1. I am going to try it someday. I genuinely like hummus.

        Back when my brain was worse, I accidentally threw out the pusher on my food processor.

        I couldn’t process what it was and thought it was packaging.

        I vaguely remember it, and think I am telling the truth. If not, maybe the fork ran away with the spoon and the food processor pusher.

        It took me a long time to figure out what had happened to my food processor and I ended up with every chopper, River, slicer, pull string thingy on the market and couldn’t figure out how to use many of them except the kind you whack on the top.

        I finally figured it out and bought a new pusher. I think it cost $12.

        My brain is better and I have been giving away all of my extra gadgets to young people who were doing things like using a plastic spoon to stir hot stuff and I mean a little white teaspoon which melted immediately.

        And they have brains, but no common sense.

  3. A video on how to do proper sprouting is recommended as most people seem to think just wetting seeds excessively is all that is needed until they sprout. Seeds and beans need warm and humid conditions to sprout and grow. These conditions are also ideal for the growth of bacteria, including Salmonella, Listeria, and E. coli. In outbreaks associated with sprouts, the seed is typically the source of the bacteria.

    1. The current recommendation to use in the home from the University of California-Davis is to treat seed by heating on a stove for 5 minutes in a solution of 3% hydrogen peroxide (available in grocery stores) at 140°F. It is important to maintain this temperature using a clean, accurate cooking thermometer. Exceeding this temperature may damage or kill seeds resulting in poor germination. Remove seed and rinse under running room temperature water for 1 minute. Discard the hydrogen peroxide solution and do not reuse. For more information see the publication
      https://anrcatalog.ucanr.edu/pdf/8151.pdf

      1. Wow, I’ve been sprouting seeds since the 70’s and have not ever pre-treated with boiling and hydrogen peroxide. No problems so far :-). I suppose I could always start.
        I’d love to know if Dr. G pre-treats his sprouted seeds by boiling in H2O and Hperoxide. . . ?

      2. Wow, Jimbo, you always have such interesting concepts.

        I buy crunchy sprouts, which is a mix of lentils and beans.

        I think I know enough to know that there is a lot to learn before trying things like sprouting.

        1. Thanks Deb, I have worked in health most of my life in many forms, and sprouts is a topic that has come up several times. There is not a lot to learn, just a few safe practices to learn and follow. Home sprouting is still very easy.

          1. That is interesting, Jimbo!

            That is such a blessing that you developed an interest in health when you were young enough to have that become a vocation.

      1. I am going to try growing broccoli sprouts.

        Mainly, I want them to be 2 days old when I eat them.

        I know that they are helping me, but I want the maximum Sulforaphane and I will never get that from a store. I am eating a few tablespoons per day.

        It has helped significantly, but I know that I have to up my game.

        I saw one of my dear friends on Friday and my cousin today and I will tell you that they both look like they are going to die soon.

        My cousin doesn’t understand that the doctors already are looking to see if he has aspiration pneumonia and I already know that they will withdraw all visiting nurses and aides if he doesn’t agree to let himself die if he gets pneumonia again. He is already frustrated with them, but they will make his life Hell and all he needs to do to get help from them is agree to not use antibiotics if he gets pneumonia and the fact that he likes being alive and also doesn’t want the discomfort of not treating pneumonia is about to become a showdown, but he isn’t as easy to push around as my grandmother was. It is coming next week. I told him already because he told me that they ordered a swallow test and some of us know that they are going to try to strong arm him into dying. I hate that.

        1. Nope, he is in rehab, for them it is try to keep him.

          He can’t get out without visiting nurses and if they switch him to deadman walking, he won’t be able to get Visiting nurses unless he agrees to never use antibiotics again.

          They won’t even allow one phone call if you say that you are going to keep using antibiotics and the ambulance people will make you sign things because deadman walking are put in a different category.

          1. With my grandmother the pulmonologist and cardiologist immediately dumped her as a patient and wouldn’t even give her a nebulizer and neither would her primary care doctor, but I bought one from Amazon and we had 4 more glorious months.

              1. I didn’t understand the whole ambulance thing, but apparently once you need antibiotics to live, you become a liability too risky for an ambulance ride as compared to all of the heart attacks and aneurysms.

    2. Alfalfa sprouts were the ones shown to sometimes have E. coli, Dr. Greger has a video on that. However, I read that it’s due tot he manure used to grow them and organic seeds do not have that problem. Anyways, it’s really easy to sprout seeds. You just put them in a jar, soak and drain, then rinse them and drain them properly everyday… I always read twice a day (at least) but I never need to rinse my seeds more than that and come out better when I do once a day, except harder beans like mung beans or adzuki, in which case rinsing twice a day helps. In any case, there is nothing all that complicated about it. You catch on quickly on how much you should rinse, etc. Simple stuff.

        1. Thanks for the video share, Liisa, I wasn’t remembering it properly or I was thinking of another video. On that note, I love Dr. Greger’s videos, old and new alike, but I am SO glad he talks faster now! Some have complained that he’s too quick in his NF videos, I don’t agree, some of the very old ones are too slow for me. More information in the quicker videos, too.

    3. I use wide-mouth quart canning jars with stiff steel screen circles in place of flats under the screw-on ring. Use washed beans with no broken pieces.
      Fill about 1/4 full and add tap water as hot as it will get. Tap water has chlorine, which kills some of the germs.
      Let sit about 2 hours, or until beans are fully re-hydrated, then drain and rinse.
      Drain fully, by turning upside-down tipped a a little in a drainer [I usually use my dish drainer.
      Many types of seeds will easily stick to the sides of the jar right after you pour the water out, by rolling the jar gently on it’s side till all sides are covered. This gives them more air to prevent souring.
      Rinse and fully drain in a place that gets light from a near-by window 3 times a day.
      Any water standing in the jar breeds mold or souring.
      With beans, the best sprouts are when they first show. That way they have less time to spoil.
      Smaller seeds like alfalfa, radish, red clover or broccoli need only about 1 1/2 Tbsp. to grow to fill the jar. Those small seeds do better sticking to the sides of the jar to keep them from matting to soon. Red clover needs hotter water to sprout, Red clover sprouts are very protective against endocrine disrupters that we my be exposed to.

      1. I just soak mine, drain them, then start rinsing and draining once a day until they’re sprouted. With harder beans like mung and adzuki, I try to remember to rinse more than once a day. This simple method has worked for me. I don’t use tap water, I use filtered. Tap probably does help kill stuff off if need be. I also use glass jars with steel screens. In regards to bacteria growth, in my experience that depends on the quality of the seeds. I have really good luck with the sprouts I use now and the ones I’ve used before them, but for a while I was getting my broccoli sprouts from another company and they were HORRIBLE… they were constantly getting all icky and a large amount of them didn’t even sprout.

        1. S,

          Where do you get your broccoli sprouts now?

          I end up buying mine already sprouted at either Whole Foods or another grocery store.

          I hate the ones at Whole Foods.

          I feel like the other grocery store has younger sprouts, but I know the study said 2 day old broccoli sprouts were most powerful.

          I feel like I would rather just grow enough for two days at a time.

          1. Laughing.

            I eat the broccoli sprouts and think, ”Can these things really be so powerful and look so they do.

            They are more like a Clark Kent type superhero. Shoeshine boy.

            1. They might have healed something like autism in me. Not at all sure that I ever had autism, but self-consciousness might have something to do with heat shock proteins or something crazy like that.

              1. I have no idea what is working.

                Lutein maybe.

                PEMF getting the antioxidants into my brain Maybe?

                Fixing my nutrition?

                All I know is that things are changing.

                1. I had results before starting back on flaxseed and omega 3’s.

                  I just started with that category, but my night vision has improved and I suddenly have depth perception.and other things.

                  1. Deb, my guess would be all of the above! And that is so awesome! Happy for you.

                    Yes, broccoli sprouts are incredibly powerful considering how tiny and delicate they appear… amazing stuff! I hope Dr. Greger comes out with some videos on micro greens soon. As far as broccoli micro greens, my guess would be that they’re pretty close to broccoli sprouts nutritionally.

          2. Deb, I get my current broccoli sprouting seeds from The Sprout House (sprouthouse.com). Very pleased with them!! I have pretty big jars so I can do two tablespoons of seeds at once per jar, so I can sprout mine to last a full week if I eat them at 1/4th cup per day or even a little more. That’s how I prefer it because even though everyone talks about how easy it is to sprout (and it is), I hate having to rinse and drain something every single day, I like to take a break and still have sprouts… have your cake and eat it too.
            The last brand of sprouts, I couldn’t do two tbsps of sprout seeds in one jar, they’d turn to mush, it was hard enough to get a good batch out of them just using 1 tbsp per jar.
            I like sprouting myself because you get SO much more than what you’d have to pay for for a small amount at the store.

  4. Topic request: I couldn’t find anything about “Natural flavors” in the search box. I did some amateur research on the Internet about these “natural” chemicals and was disappointed by what I discovered. Since I sometimes stock Kashi cereals on my shelf (and they list this item on the package) I decided to call a representative yesterday and inquire about the sources for the flavorings they use. The rep stated that all “natural flavorings” in Kashi cereals (and Naked Bear) are plant derived, but that still didn’t put my mind at ease. I’d like to know more about them.

    Oh, yes, Kashi is a subsidiary company of Kellogg Co.
    That doesn’t inspire confidence either.

    1. “Natural” according to the FDA is anything coming from the known universe. According to (the leading consumer magazine) it is nothing more than a marketing term with no actual meaning.

      “Natural Flavors” is a completely different thing. That is the term used by food companies to avoid disclosing their blend of proprietary ingredients so other people can not reverse engineer their products and sell knockoffs. It may be a blend of anything considered fit for human consumption.

      1. Castoreum is a particularly frightening “natural flavor.” What is wrong with the FDA anyway? Who are they really serving?

        1. Well the FDA decided that beaver anal gland secretions will not kill or injure a human (at least physically) if they eat it so they just do not outright say it on labels when used. How convenient for the companies that choose to use it instead of actual vanilla, raspberry or strawberry flavors.

        2. https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/cfrsearch.cfm?fr=501.22

          I didn’t get up to the whole list, but for people who are wondering, the FDA does have a list.

          I thought it was interesting that among 80,000 food products studied, only salt, water, and sugar appear on nutrition labels more often than natural flavor and that the FDA considers more than 3,000 chemical food additives to be natural flavors. 3000!

          https://www.10best.com/interests/food-culture/the-ugly-truth-about-natural-flavoring/

    2. Hi drcobalt, thanks for your question. they can be derived from animal or plant. for example from
      Spices
      Fruit or fruit juice
      Vegetables or vegetable juice
      Edible yeast, herbs, bark, buds, root leaves or plant material
      Dairy products, including fermented products
      Meat, poultry or seafood
      Eggs
      These are some compound for example can be listed as natural flavor.
      As far as food safety the FDA has to test these chemicals to make sure they are safe for use.
      https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/cfrsearch.cfm?fr=101.22

      1. MSG can also be listed as ‘natural flavors’ since many people avoid it.
        Just avoid any ‘food’ with it listed as an ingredient.

    3. “Natural” flavors are always made in a lab, even if they may contain anything plant-derived. Whenever I see “natural flavors” in a food, I cringe. Since the FDA/gov’t approves a lot of toxic chemicals as GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe) – even though they may be banned in other countries – I stay away. As stated previously, if you can’t pronounce it and don’t know what it is … stay away. Our bodies are already bombarded by enough chemicals that we cannot control.

      1. Added flavors is a fascinating topic. “Natural flavors” are first obtained from a natural source; this can be simple, such as squeezing or collecting oils or resins, or more complex, such as extraction with solvents from water to alcohol to organic solvents. Other purification steps may also be involved.

        “Flavors are complex mixtures that sometimes comprise more than 100 chemicals. In addition to flavors themselves, these mixtures contain chemicals that have other functions. Solvents, emulsifiers, flavor modifiers and preservatives often make up 80 to 90 percent of the mixture….

        The natural or artificial emulsifiers, solvents and preservatives in flavor mixtures are called “incidental additives.” That means the manufacturer does not have to disclose their presence on food labels. Food manufacturers can use a natural solvent such as ethanol in their flavors, but the FDA also permits them to use synthetic solvents such as propylene glycol. Flavor extracts and food ingredients that have been derived from genetically engineered crops may also be labeled “natural” because the FDA has not fully defined what the term “natural” means.

        Paradoxically, the FDA requires a natural flavor to be labeled as an artificial flavor if it is added to a food not to reinforce a flavor already present but to lend a new taste. For instance, adding naturally-derived blueberry flavor to a plain muffin would require that the blueberry flavor be labeled “artificial flavor.” “
        https://www.ewg.org/foodscores/content/natural-vs-artificial-flavors

        To keep my life simple, I avoid added flavors, “natural” or otherwise. Though my daughter is drinking carbonated water flavored with “natural flavors,” which seems to belie the last statement quoted above. But she is drinking the flavored carbonated water to replace sodas, which seems a step in the right direction.

  5. You shouldn’t eat raw dry beans but what about straight from the vine? I love eating my raw fava beans straight from the vine in my garden.

    1. Fava beans raw have to be avoided by many people because of favism, a disease that results from a deficiency of the enzyme glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase and is a genetically inherited condition usually occurring in males. It’s more common in those of African and Mediterranean descent. It is considered a common genetic condition in the population. You sound like one of the lucky ones.

      Beans actually have a better nutritional profile after they are cooked. Beans must be boiled to destroy the lectins. Lectins are a kind of protein that can bind to sugar. They’re sometimes referred to as antinutrients, since they can reduce the body’s ability to absorb nutrients. Lectins are thought to have evolved as a natural defense in plants, essentially as a toxin that deters animals from eating the plants. The only thing you need to know is that if prepared incorrectly, eating a bean can make you very sick. It could even send you to the hospital or kill you. Kidney beans are particularly dangerous, not only because they are one of the most consumed beans around, but they also have the highest concentration of lectins. Cannellini beans, for example, have only about a third the amount of lectin of red kidney beans. It’s still enough to make you sick, however.

      The toxin in kidney beans is called phytohemagglutinin. Your body reacts to this poison by emptying the entire digestive tract as quickly as possible. And you know what that means, right? An epic blow-out coming from both ends! Not the way I’d want to spend an afternoon.

      1. It depends on the type of bean and the type of lectin. The lectins in kidney beans will make you sick. The lectins in black eyed peas and chick peas won’t. How do I know? I have been eating raw (dry, soaked overnight in water) black eyed peas and chick peas a couple times a week for years. I have never gotten sick and am alive and well.

        Go to the NF homepage. Click the health topics index. Choose your topic of interest.
        https://nutritionfacts.org/video/are-lectins-in-food-good-or-bad-for-you/

      2. Thank you. In a sprouting book, it mentions that without the green leaves developed, sprouted beans have 2 factors that are carcinogenic. Apparently, the chlorophyll neutralizes the toxins.

      3. ‘Your body reacts to this poison by emptying the entire digestive tract as quickly as possible. And you know what that means, right? An epic blow-out coming from both ends!’

        Now that’s what I call de-toxing ……

    1. Carol,

      From what I have read, the dry beans are best used within 2 to 3 years.

      They might not go bad when stored longer than that, but they lose their nutritional value and flavor.

      1. PJ and Carol,

        Thanks for bringing the topic up.

        I have been doing the mental math about how to go zero waste or even just cutting my packaging waste in half, but I need expiration dates and I didn’t put any on my first containers and I regret it already.

        I find I am playing ping-pong in my conscience between whether to focus on convenient ways to eat healthier versus looking at all of those cans and pouches and wanting to not generate trash.

        I end up following a lot of trash artists. I recommend it. Google Image art made from trash and be amazed, but some of them really got to me.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lbdQb0wqb44

        1. Ashes to ashes and….
          I compost things I have mistakenly failed to consume in time–just a thought….
          I figure it’s good for the earth even if not for me.

  6. I have been eating sprouted beans for decades particularly green lentils and fenugreek without any problems. Red kidney beans are well known to be poisonous must be cooked well. Raw food is alive cooked food is dead just because ‘science’ cannot measure the value of life in our food to our health and longevity does not mean it is of no value.

    1. Tony Edwards, You make a very good point. I’ve often wondered how much nutrition we really lose by cooking food, (plant food, of course). I understand that vital enzymes are destroyed by cooking things over about 115 deg F. I haven’t yet done much research on the “Raw Food Diet”, but it certainly is a topic that I intend to study more deeply. Do you have any recommendations on good reliable, unbiased resources for this topic? … books, Internet websites, Youtube videos, etc.?

      1. WFPB-Hal, you have probably seen this older video, but I came across it this morning in wandering through links.
        https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=LSNJcHBUZb0 is about raw food diet myths, some of which are surprising to me. Dr Klapper says he can do up to maybe 75% raw, and I found I struggled too when I tried it for a year. My impression at the time was that our garden was definitely an asset, my limited budget was not, and our stores in the winter season made it challenging.

        1. Barb, thanks for the link. I don’t recall ever watching that video … (I should have used the search tool here on NF!) It certainly makes sense to me to eat a good mixture of both cooked and raw plant foods, of those which can be eaten either way. I’ve really never paid much attention to exactly what is lost (or gained) by cooking. So it’s an area I think I will explore more deeply, just out of curiosity.

          1. Hal,

            I have been eating a lot of raw vegetables because of having burnt out on cooking and out of trying to get more of certain enzymes, trying to replicate some of the broccoli studies.

            Raw fruits and vegetables seem to be helping my brain function, though some of them do more cooked.

            I think having something raw as many days as possible is more my goal versus going all raw.

            Gojiman talked about how many raw vegans leave veganism and later point to health issues.

            Rawvana, etc. They go so raw that they slingshot out to eating fish and red meat.

            Almost all of the used to be vegan videos are ”used to be raw” and now I ear cooked meat.

            Says something.to me.

            .

            1. Eating the raw broccoli and onions and cauliflower and sprouted lentils and broccoli sprouts etc have improved my brain.

              And my pocketbook got balanced out because produce is expensive, but my electric bill has been $30. Not cooking had a $20 benefit. It didn’t even make sense that it would be that high.

            2. Hi Deb, Yes, it seems a good mixture of raw and cooked would be best. There is so much that is “undiscovered” in nutrition science. All kinds of chemical reactions are taking place depending on the way food is cooked/processed.

              The media had everyone convinced that scientists knew everything about nutrition once a small list of “vitamins” were first discovered! I really think we’re just beginning to scratch the surface. :-) Almost laughable the way food labels state the amount of a few basic food ingredients that are supposed to be important.

  7. Hi there. This is probably not where I need to ask this question, but can someone direct me to where that might be? My brother-in-law has restless leg syndrome and is in dire straights. I’m wondering if this might have a nutritional component other than an iron deficiency. His doctor prescribed methadone along with a couple of drinks per day! The sounds so wrong to me! He is feeling suicidal due to lack of sleep and very high anxiety.

    1. Hi Lily, thanks for your question. Beside Iron one can check magnesium and folate level. There was a study in medline that that I shall share with you as well as link from Dr Greger about magnesium.
      magnesium-rich foods such as whole grains, leafy green vegetables, nuts, seeds, and legumes—beans, peas, lentils, and soy—help hundreds of enzymatic reactions in the human body. “A higher intake of dietary magnesium may favorably affect a cluster of metabolic and inflammatory disorders,” including diabetes and heart disease. I hope this is useful to you.
      https://nutritionfacts.org/topics/magnesium/
      https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31020817

      1. Lily, he can also rub magnesium gel on his legs after shower, or before bed. That works for many. Epson salts baths are good also. If using magnesium pills, don’t get oxide, it’s not absorbed very well. Try a taurate, malate or even citrate form.
        With folates, greens are best form. If he’s taking a multi-vitamin, avoid anything with folic acid in it. It’s a synthetic form that actually blocks folate absorption. in many people.

    2. Lily, your BIL sounds much like my hubby – his restless leg syndrome and anxiety resolved when he increased intake of the mineral magnesium; and GABA, which is an amino acid present in almonds and other foods. Search online for GABA foods and magnesium foods, lots of good info. To get very rapid relief, he started with them as supplements (got them from the grocery store) – and had comfortable, restorative sleep that same night. Best wishes for his quick relief, and hugs to you.

    3. Lily, as a former sufferer of RLS, I agree with the suggestions of Spring03 and Laura re magnesium. I have not tried GABA (thanks Laura!) yet, but I also find my habit of not drinking water makes things worse. There are several kinds of magnesium out there to try.

      I have no doubt your brother in law will solve the rls soon, but my gosh, his doctor’s recommendations are frightening. I think I would be out there actively searching for a supportive family doctor, preferably one with a lifestyle-first kind of attitude. I just did this myself recently… made an appointment for meet and greet before even thinking about transfering my files.

  8. I wonder how much heat (and what kind of heat) is applied to dry the beans prior to bagging them and sending them to the warehouse. How long do they sit in the warehouse before they are distributed to our grocery stores. How long is the heat or sunshine applied while drying. All the bags of beans I purchase have a use by/best by date on them. I write the date I purchased them on the bag too. (In the stores with drop down bins, I ask them to show me the bag and dates on them— they are usually 50 lb but I only buy 1-2 lbs.) . Are they still considered ‘raw’ if dried for several hours? I’m in my 80’s and I rinse the beans multiple times, soak in water a minimum of 8+ hours, throw that soak water away (which has lectins) and cook in my pressure cooker. One pound soaked, 6 cups water, onions, garlic, cumin, turmeric, occasional ginger. This is wonderful. We favor black, small reds, canelli, pinto, navy, and others. I also do lentils and have sprouted them, garbonza too, garlic chives. I have trays I use and the truck drivers cup for sprouting. (This I prefer for ease of rinsing and use.). Tell me your thoughts about the type and duration of heat and it’s effect on my beans. That’s some yummy eating. Be well!

  9. The truck drivers sprouting cup (invented and sold by a truck driver) , has a somewhat smaller cup that sits inside a larger cup. The smaller one has multiple small holes in the bottom but does not rest in direct contact with the the bottom of the larger one. Good for soaking in the cup while driving too. The sprouts drain between rinsing while driving. . The driver kept several in his truck cup holder section. When he took a break, he rinsed his sprouts /seeds while on his route. He said he always had fresh ‘greens’ with his meals. It’s pretty smart. I hope no one thinks that I’m trying to sell anything. It’s so easy and I love it. Be well friends!

      1. Awwwww, I wish my grandmother ate even slightly better so that she could still be alive.

        She lived pretty long, but ate meat and ate junk food by the end.

        Sigh. I inherited her house, but I would give it back to get her back.

        1. That’s nothing, my mom’s diet is as follows: cigarettes, coffee, 2L of pepsi, chocolate, candy, toaster cake things, and that’s about it.

          She has had breast cancer, has heart disease, and all her teeth have rotted and she has to pay 2000$ to get them surgically removed. But she insists that her cigarettes and pepsi have NOTHING to do with that.

          Also she is a normal weight and not at all fat in any way. (proof that carbs or insulin don’t inherently make you fat calories matter) smoking decreases appetite

          I almost lost her twice now and she does not change at all sadly :(.

          1. Sorry to hear that.

            My sister-in-law’s mother fits that description.

            Smoker with kidney cancer.

            She had been diagnosed with emphysema, but when they were examining her lungs to see if she could survive surgery, they said that her lungs were clear.

            Strange for an 80-something year old chain smoker.

            Good news, but I don’t trust medical very much.

            I am not sure if that is paranoia or just experience.

            I was watching a video recently by the inventor of the PEMF ICES device I have been using and he was talking about all of the urban myths with all of the people lying about the technologies and he gave an interesting statistic about Amgen and Bayer trying to replicate cancer studies, which were already peer-reviewed and it was the best labs, best researchers trying to replicate published journals in high-quality publications. He said that Amgen could only replicate about 11% of the cancer studies. Bayer could only replicate 25% of the cancer studies.

            11% and 25%

            It is frustrating to know who to trust when everybody knows how to get money and power and prestige.

  10. “It’s amazing that I can create fresh produce in 2 to 3 days on my kitchen counter. But using canned beans I can get similar nutrition in about 2 to 3 seconds.”

    Interesting math. You calculate only the LEAD TIME in your kitchen? The time from entering the kitchen until the food is on the table.
    If you calculate your WORKING TIME and include your logistic time; the working time to get the food from the store, I think you will be surprised.

    I my case, daily working time for sprouts 2-3 minutes, and canned beans 20-30 minutes. That said, I use both types… sprouts for my brain and cooked beans for my skeletal muscles. I just ask my body.

    1. Leo,

      What I understand is that the answer depends on whether you go to the store anyway or whether you have your groceries delivered, for instance.

      I go to the grocery store for produce very often, because it doesn’t stay fresh for more than 2 to 3 days.

      I have a pantry filled with dry beans, canned beans, and pouches. I like the pouches for keeping some cold chickpeas to put in salads or my wraps. I feel less worried about the lining of cans and things with those, and they are lighter to carry, but I have waste to think about. The cans are cheaper and go on sale of 5 for a certain price, but I do worry about if I am getting anything in the can lining and find they take longer to clean the cans out for recycling. The pouches are instant to open and easier to clean, lighter to carry, I can buy things already sprouted, and don’t take up as much room in the cabinets or fridge, (I don’t have a lot of cabinet space) They generate trash, which is just as bad if not worse than generating recycling. With dried beans, I get gas if I don’t soak them and rinse them. People just cook them in the Instapot, but I didn’t find it worked as well and I find that rehydrating beans doesn’t have the same chew factor as canned beans for things like chili. I don’t mind using dried beans for soups and stews where I can soak them. I know that I could sprout them if I ever get organized enough and begin to understand ahead of time what I want to eat for dinner, but so far that hasn’t happened.

      I don’t know if that adds to the conversation or not. I just am adding a third perspective to the debate.

  11. I wanted to ask something to everyone…

    What the heck are we going to do about the food industry? I find it blatantly absurd that industry whether it be (dairy,beef,fish,nut,sugar or other industry) uses nutrition science as marketing. Much of the science in nutrition is pseudoscience paid marketing by food companies. I find it insane this is not illegal? HOW IS THIS ALLOWED!!! I understand the funding has to come from somewhere, but the government should have to pay for it or universities or something. How can a food company just create a study that will show its products are good for you with terrible study design.

    Then… the media picks it up and the next thing you know we have a new fad diet responsible for creating more heart disease and cancer. Its time we all stand up to this corporate greed, money over life bullshit and do something! I plan to have a career in public health and nutrition just so I can create policy that prevents food industry from creating these studies, because it seems nobody else is doing anything and i’m tired of explaining to people why the bs studies they thro at me are garbage industry funded trash.

    1. BeastFromTheEast,

      That is why Dr. Greger is here.

      Hoping we will get informed and change what we eat and pass the information on, while he also tries to get the information to doctors.

      I have given people “How Not To Die” and the cookbook.

      If I was wealthy, there would be copies of HNTD in every hospital waiting room near me.

      I do talk about it with my friends and online. People are so anti-vegan, but they are less anti-Whole Food Plant Based, so I stick with that and emphasize the 5% or fewer calories from animal products which almost every doctor on the internet seems to be promoting. They disagree on everything else, but eat your veggies and lower your animal products and don’t use vegetable oils and eat organic are the types of topics which people can rally around.

      People are defensive and feel threatened, and people tend to communicate their “pet” diets in aggressive, know-it-all ways, which cause people to not understand the similarities between the different programs.

      For instance, people are wildly Keto and hate vegan, but when you listen to Dr. Berg, he recommends only eating 5% of your calories from animal products and not using vegetable oils and not eating processed foods and he recommends eating 10 servings per day of vegetables and his followers go over to YouTube and bash Dr. Greger when Dr. Greger has mentioned every single one of those things from the very same studies and Dr. Greger did it with better charts and graphs and study links.

      I long for a truce so that we can get people closer together.

      My theory is that once people get down to 5% animal products, many of them will end up getting rid of meat as a condiment and go vegan. Not pushing a vegan agenda. Just saying. I know it because I have given up things like vegan cheeses, which I used when I thought I couldn’t go off of dairy. People end up going off of transition food would be another example.

      Dr. McDougall had an interesting interview today where he spoke about people trying to pass legislation in Oregon where vegan options would be available in prisons and hospitals, etc. That would be one way. I have a few relatives who have been in rehabs and nursing homes and it would be horribly upsetting to spend all this time learning this way of eating and to end up as an advanced elderly person and not be able to do it.

      If my life were not so filled with a great big “to do list” right now, I would also be showing materials at Senior Centers. I feel like having children and grandchildren see their grandparents get rid of medicines and pain and disease would be a big help. Anyway, those are things I have thought of.

      Mostly, I just share the similarities with Keto with all of my Keto friends so that they will mentally not struggle with transitioning or so that they will maybe move from the “Atkins” version of “Keto” they are doing more toward something like what Dr. Berg said. Inevitably, they listen to him and love him and “missed” the 5% animal products and 10 servings of vegetables part.

      1. Deb, I’m with you, but don’t forget schools where impressionable youngsters are. Okay, teachers on this site: where are you? I hope you’re sharing this sort of information with your students. Young people would gobble this information up. They want their parents and grandparents, not to mention themselves and their sibs to be healthy!

        1. Well I plan to become a teacher in the future, right now im trying to figure out what my education should be. On one side I’m thinking registered dietician, on the other side I’m thinking doctor of public health, or something else, don’t know yet.

          1. Beast From The East,

            Good for you that you are young enough to pursue these things seriously!

            Wishing you well for the future!

      2. Does Eric Berg really promote 5% animal products? that’s hard to believe, he isn’t that bad is that’s true. Other than him of coarse from what I’m aware being a cholesterol denialist, promotes distrust in credible organizations, and promotes unsafe food products and propogates unsustainiated myths about healthy food.

        That diet is utter bs, if you want scientific refutations of their idiotic claims, I HIGHLY HIGHLY suggest you visit the amazing website Dr. Greger recommends http://plantpositive.com/

        great resource there.

        1. BFTE,

          Yes, I was surprised.

          In many of his videos, he seems to be a meat apologist, but he specifically said, “5%” and “10 servings of vegetables” and when I listened to Dr. Hyman, Dr. Oz, Dr. Axe (who isn’t a medical doctor), Dr. Bredesen, etc. They all are closer to the recommendation to meat more as if it were a condiment.

          Their meat apologist videos may not all make that clear, but they do say it.

  12. I am not able to eat any legumes
    (red kidney beans, peas, green beans, peanuts),
    because when I do I get tears in my cuticles.

    1. Interesting ailment. And you think it’s food-related?

      “Dry cuticle trouble can sometimes be hereditary, and can also be a sign of hyperthyroidism, or a problem with your thyroid gland, especially if you also have troubles with excessively dry skin on your feet or heels. People with poor thyroid health sometimes experience cold hands due to lack of blood circulation, and broken cuticles may be related to this problem.

      https://morenature.com/blogs/nature-news/36242244-natural-home-remedy-treatment-for-dry-cracked-cuticles-skin-on-hands

  13. I was interested in some of the animal studies with the ICES. One was whether they could suppress inflammation long enough in the pancreas of animals who were genetically modified to be predisposed to have T1D and whether suppressing the inflammation causes them to not get T1D.

    It caused me to wonder about inflammation as a mechanism of T1D.

    Yes, it is a zillion miles over my head, but I understood the word “inflammation” and “Type 1 Diabetes” and almost understand what “Interferon” or at least I have heard of it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zOYkyOempyM It is about 25 minutes in.

  14. Great video.

    Thank-you so much for all you do Dr. Greger, you are such a service to humanity, this world is so much better because you are a part of it and I can not even begin to express how much of a positive impact you are having on me and those who are blessed enough to have been influenced by your efforts

  15. When you are giving talks weather it’s on video or audio why do you talk using language that only a doctor or chemist would understand? You talk fast and use terminology that most people cannot understand. Tone it down some and make it more simple for those who didn’t get 8 years of college. I understand you but my family and friends who watch these videos with me sometimes are most lost.I have been studying nutrition for about 30 years so I can follow “most” of what you say.

    1. I have always enjoyed Dr Greger’s presentations and find his delivery speed just right imo.. it’s fast enough to hold my interest. The terminology goes with subject. Any new field of endevour that we choose to explore will come with it’s own vocabulary, whether we are into racing mountain bikes, home improvement, art, or nutrition. The talks are presented in layman’s terms, and we can do a quick search on the net to look up the unfamiliar words. Other doctors like Dr McDougall have different styles of presenting info which might appeal to some too.

  16. About hummus: I live in the Middle East and the fat content of hummus can get quit high. I make my own from soaked chickpeas and add garlic, lemon juice, cayenne pepper, and cumin. To loosen the texture I add liquid from the cooking water, a liquid that I treasure since it is so tasty and can be use as stock.
    In order to vary the taste, I sometimes will add a roasted red paper which turns it orange, a 1/2 cooked beet which turns it a fuschia pink or most recently a 1/2 cooked sweet potato. In case you think that these additions are not traditional, I found a tradtional dish in Turkey called topik which is a mixture of mashed chickpeas and potato.

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