Nutrition in canned beans?

Q: Sometimes I used canned beans, since I can’t always cook dried ones. I always drain the liquid from canned beans and rinse them under cold water in the hopes that I am lowering the sodium content. Am I also rinsing away some other nutrients?

A: Packed with protein, fiber, iron, potassium, and many other nutrients, beans are an essential ingredient in a plant-based diet. Studies have shown that people who eat beans four or more times per week have a 22% lower risk of coronary heart disease. Nearly half of all beans consumed in the Unites States are pinto beans.

Canned beans can be a great time saver. When you drain and rinse canned beans, you reduce the sodium content by about 40%. All of the other beneficial nutrients remain within the bean. Beans are relatively inexpensive and come in many different colors and sizes, so be sure to include all varieties in your diet.

by Alison Ozgur, Registered Dietitian specializing in health and fitness nutrition. – from NW Veg e-Thymes April 2012 vol 68

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