Use plant-based proteins in your diet regularly
Legumes are great sources of protein for those on a meat-free diet. Lately, one branch of the legume family has been in the international spotlight. ‘Pulses’ are legumes that are harvested for their dried seeds, such as chickpeas (garbanzo beans), lentils, and dried peas and beans. They’re such an important protein source that the United Nations declared 2016 the International year of the Pulses. When nutritionists talk about beans, most of them are pulses – kidney beans, navy beans, black beans, broad beans, lima beans, butter beans. By contrast, legumes such as soybeans, peanuts, peapods, and green beans don’t count as pulses.
WhY The FUSS?
Pulses are nutritional powerhouses, packed with protein, fibre and other nutrients. Many pulses are good sources of iron, zinc, and folate. They don’t have unhealthy saturated fat. In their natural state, most of these have a low glycemic index, so they raise blood sugar levels less than other types of carbohydrates. In addition, pulses are inexpensive, widely available, and easy to prepare.
Food makers are jumping onto the pulse trend with all kinds of products – everything from pulse flours and pastas to pulse-based snacks (crackers, chips, roasted chickpeas and mixes
made with pulse flours. But just because there are pulses in a product doesn’t mean it’s good for you. Some pulse-based snacks and baking mixes include only a small amount of pulses along with added sugars. How can you tell if it’s healthy? Look at the ingredients list. See if the pulses are just fillers or are the bulk of the product, and whether the product is loaded with sugar, sodium, and saturated fat.
Pulses on The Menu
To incorporate pulse-based products into your diet, consider starting with a pulse flour. Substitute it in recipes where you’d normally use white (refined) flour – for example, when you dredge chicken in flour before sautéing it. Some people are bigger fans of using pulses in their natural state. That can mean soaking dried beans or lentils overnight before boiling or micro waving them, or using canned beans. There’s no difference nutritionally between dried and canned. If you use canned, go for low-sodium versions, and rinse them before using to reduce the sodium. Enjoy pulses on their own as a side dish or as a base for vegetables. Sprinkle pulses in salads. Make pulse snacks: Puréed beans for a dip with fresh vegetables, or roasted chickpeas for a crunchy treat. For entrees, try white bean soup, lentil chilli, pea soup, or chickpea and bulgur wheat salad. Have fun creating, and enjoy the enormous benefits of the little seeds.
Enjoy pulses on a their own as side dish or as a base for vegetables. in Sprinkle pulses pulse salads. Make snacks: Puréed with beans for a dip or fresh vegetables, roasted chickpeas treat. for a crunchy