Monday Food Moment – Adzuki Beans

Simple, yet effective

Today, I’m presenting you a food that is not extremely glamorous, but, nonetheless, should be considered for a starring role in your diet: the Adzuki bean.

Simple Ingredients

This little bean hails from East Asia and was later crossbred with native bean species in the Himalayas.  The earliest known archaeological evidence of this bean comes from the Awazu-kotei Ruin (Shiga prefecture) of the Japanese mid-Jōmon period of 4000 BCE, and later occurs commonly in many Jomon sites of between 4000 BCE and 2000 BCE in Japan.  The analysis of the unearthed beans indicates that it first was cultivated in Japan during the period from 4000 BCE to 2000 BCE. In China and Korea, specimens from ruins date from 3000 BCE to 1000 BCE, and these are thought to be cultivated ones

The adzuki bean is commonly used in a sweet, dessert bean paste across Asia; it can also be used in bean salads and makes a wonderful soup ingredient.

Some of the nutritional benefits of the adzuki

1. No fats

Even though adzuki beans (especially when they are dry) are rich in calories, they are free of fat content. One cup of dry adzuki beans is estimated to contain only a gram of fat. These beans contain saturated fat of not more than 4 grams.

2. High in fiber

Besides being rich in calories and proteins, these beans are also a great source of fiber. The main benefit of dietary fiber is promoting satiety as well as regulating the levels of both sugar and cholesterol respectively.

3. High in protein

Dry adzuki beans are an ideal menu option for high-protein diets. Protein is quite essential in the human body since it aids in building and repairing worn out body tissues, hormones and cells.

4. Minerals and vitamins

Dry adzuki beans have a certain amount of various minerals. Some of the minerals contained in these beans include calcium, phosphorous and magnesium. Dry adzuki beans are, however, not too rich in vitamins. Nevertheless, these beans contain vitamin A, vitamin B-9 and Folate.

Health Benefits of Adzuki Beans

1. Improve bowel movement

Since they have a high fiber content, adzuki beans greatly improve bowel movement. This helps in keeping the digestive system smooth, thus preventing constipation. The fiber contained in these beans also helps in preventing colon cancer.

2. Stabilize cholesterol level

Due to high concentration of soluble fiber in adzuki beans, these beans are ideal for stabilizing the cholesterol level. They also help in eliminating cholesterol and toxins from the body.

3. Prevent breast cancer

Adzuki beans have certain components that help kill cancerous tissues. Consuming a cup of these beans on a regular basis lowers the risk of getting breast cancer among women. These beans can also be consumed to lower the risk of getting different types of cancers.

4. Treat bladder infections and urinary dysfunction

The high amount of soluble fiber in adzuki beans helps in treating bladder infections and urinary dysfunction in both men and women. This soluble fiber has a soothing effect and is thus ideal for healing an infected bladder and urinary tract.

5. Lose weight

Since they are rich in soluble fibers, adzuki beans help keep your stomach full for relatively long hours. Therefore, these beans will keep you satiated for long hours. They are also rich in protein and can therefore help in keep sugar levels low. As a result, they help in keeping weight off.

So, go try some of these beneficial beans; you can find creative and tasty recipes that will please even the most distinguishing palate.

Author: jansenphoto

A Fresh Perspective Photography is more than just a vehicle for capturing the world around me; it provides me with a palette and a set of brushes, with which I paint not only what I see, but also look to express the emotions that are evoked by the scene in front of me in that moment. Growing up in the Netherlands exposed me to a wide cross-section of visual arts that laid the foundation of my photographic view of all that surrounds me. Early influences were the Dutch Masters of the 17th century, to whom I was introduced by my grandfather during museum explorations; favorites among them are the scenes of quotidian life depicted by Jan Steen and Frans Hals and the vivid landscapes of Jacob van Ruisdael. My classical high school education was supplemented by the Boijmans Van Beuningen museum, where I spent many a lunch hour exploring its great collection. Here I was introduced to surrealism with a particular love for the approach taken by Salvador Dali; Dali also rekindled my appreciation for the work of Hieronymus Bosch, who often showed the folly of us mortals. Universal Connections My approach to any photographic subject is to look for understanding first; in this I look to establish either a connection between the viewer and the subject or capture the connection of the subject with its surroundings. The captured image then aims to portray this connection from a perspective that is part of my personal interpretation. This interpretation is often a form of externalized introspection, which may alternately display the connection of isolated beings and items with their environment or highlight the whimsy of the profound world, in which we find ourselves. The universe is full of connections, many of which are waiting to be discovered; part of my journey as a photographer is to document these connections. Any assignment, be it an event, a product shoot or a portrait session is always approached through communication with the client; this is where the first connection is established. Ideas are exchanged and a collaborative plan of action forms, ultimately resulting in a set of images that aim to exceed the expectations of each client. And, lest we forget, it is important to have fun while practicing the serious business of photography!

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