According to a new study by researchers at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto, beans, peas, lentils, and chickpeas help with weight loss. The study included 21 clinical trials, and found the foods helped those on diets feel full and lose weight.
“Though the weight loss was small, our findings suggest that simply including pulses in your diet may help you lose weight, and we think more importantly, prevent you from gaining it back after you lose it,” study lead author Russell de Souza said in a press release.
Beans, lentils, chickpeas, and peas are loaded with protein, vitamins, minerals, and fiber, with experts noting it makes perfect sense that they function as weight loss aids that keep cholesterol levels down when consumed on a regular basis. Such foods feature a low glycemic index, which means they take time for the digestive tract to break down and work as ideal substitutes for unhealthy fats and animal protein.
The clinical trials involved 940 adults. Participants who consumed one serving (3/4 cup) of beans, etc. per day lost average of 0.75 pounds over six weeks without making any other dietary changes. Previous research has shown how helpful legumes are in maintaining feelings of “fullness,” a common issue in many diets. People feel hungry or otherwise crave certain foods on most fad diets, resulting in weight loss failure. Legumes increases feelings of fullness by 31%.
Additionally, these foods reduce the amount of “bad” cholesterol in the body, while their fiber content is believed to help with the absorption of fats.
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