One would expect you to be familiar with the health importance of navy beans since you eat them in a lot of meals, including salads, soups & sides. But are you familiar with these benefits at all? In this article, we’ll see if navy beans are to be more regular in your diet or if to take them out completely.
For a start, did you know that navy beans make the cut for the top 10 healthiest legumes to eat?
Navy beans have a remarkable nutritional profile. The beans are filled with antioxidants, micronutrients & plant-based fiber & protein. The addition of navy beans to your meal may lead to a reduction in LDL cholesterol, an improvement in heart health & healthier maintenance of body weight.
Nutritional Profile of Navy Beans
Navy beans belong to the Fabaceae family. They are a type of white bean native to the Americas & were a popular staple food in those days. Navy beans are oval & typically smaller than other types of white beans.
Navy beans are easily obtained in cans. If you prefer to do the cooking yourself, though, you’ll have to soak them in cold water for 3-5 hours, after which you simmer them for 1 hour. Note that canned navy beans have to be thoroughly rinsed before you use them in your recipes. These beans can be included in various recipes, ranging from soups to chili & casseroles to salads.
Navy beans pack a fat bunch of antioxidants & micronutrients. Like every type of white beans, navy beans are very rich in phosphatidylserine, a fatty, essential substance in the brain. They also contain apigenin, a flavonoid that boasts impressive antioxidants & anti-inflammatory qualities.
A 182-gram cup of navy beans offers approximately the following:
- 255 calories;
- 47 grams of carbs;
- 15 grams of protein;
- 1.1 grams of fat;
- 19 grams of fiber;
- 255 micrograms folate (64 % DV)
- 1 milligram of manganese (48% DV)
- 0.4 milligrams of thiamine (29% DV)
- 262 milligrams of phosphorus (26% DV)
- 4.3 milligrams of iron (24% DV)
- 96 milligrams of magnesium (24% DV)
- 708 milligrams of potassium (20% DV)
- 10.4 milligrams of copper (19% DV)
- 126 milligrams of calcium (13% DV)
- 0.3 milligrams of vitamin B6 (13% DV)
- 1.9 milligrams of zinc (12% DV)
- 5.3 micrograms selenium (8% DV)
- 0.1 milligrams of riboflavin (7% DV)
- 1.2 milligrams of niacin (6% DV)
- 0.5 milligrams of pantothenic acid (5% DV)
- 1.6 milligrams of vitamin C (3% DV)
6 Health Importance of Navy Beans
The nutritional value of navy beans ensures it has a couple of health benefits. For a start, micronutrients & antioxidants are enough for navy beans to combat diseases, improve cardiovascular health & foster cognitive function.
Here are other great benefits to gain from navy beans.
Brain Health Support
As previously mentioned, navy beans are high in phosphatidylserine, a phospholipid type containing amino & fatty acids. These molecules are crucial in increasing the levels of chemicals in the brain that work to enhance memory & communication between brain cells. Studies also suggest that phosphatidylserine can slow down the symptoms of cognitive decline associated with old age.
These molecules have also shown depression-tackling abilities and proven they can help combat Parkinson’s disease — a disorder that makes balance & coordination difficult.
Great Source of Antioxidants
Navy beans are very rich in polyphenols, which are antioxidants that help to combat free radicals & avoid damage to the cells. Thanks to this antioxidant level, navy beans are good at fighting inflammation & modulating immune responses.
These white beans contain apigenin as well, a flavonoid that research has found helpful in the fight against amnesia, diabetes, depression & Alzheimer’s.
The Canadian Journal of Dietetic Practice & Research published a publication that reported that regular consumption of navy beans reduces metabolic risk factors that may cause obesity, such as high cholesterol levels. In a study, the participants ate 5 cups of cooked navy beans every week for a month & the results showed that the male participants had experienced significant reductions in LDL cholesterol & total cholesterol.
Another publication in Frontiers in Nutrition revealed that the continuous consumption of navy beans was very efficient in moderating cholesterol levels in children & adults. Researchers concluded that eating beans reduces the free fatty acids related to metabolic diseases & increases the development of anti-inflammatory lipids.
Heart Health Support
Legume consumption has always been a natural method to enhance cardio health & lower the risk of disease. For a start, legumes have been established (in several studies) to reduce LDL cholesterol levels — a significant risk factor for cardiovascular complications. Navy beans also contain some compounds that decrease the markers of inflammation, which are a common cause of cardiovascular disorders.
Eating white beans has always been a way to keep a healthy weight. Navy beans contain plant-based fiber & protein, both of which help to promote satiety & lower ghrelin levels. This implies that you only need to eat little navy beans to be satisfied for a long time (ghrelin is a hunger-stimulating hormone).
Research also indicates that supplementing with navy beans helped improve intestinal health in persons with fat-induced obesity. The researchers found that this supplementation promoted barrier integrity, a healthy microbiota & reduced the characteristic of the obese phenotype.
The inclusion of white beans in your diet can help foster weight-loss & regulate blood sugar levels. Reports also show that eating beans, particularly kidney black, pinto & navy beans, is helpful in the prevention & treatment of certain chronic diseases, thus holding the promise of preventing diabetes development.
Concluding the Health Importance of Navy Beans
The health importance of navy beans is easy to get. After all, they can be eaten in very delicious forms, so there’s no reason not to eat them often. Add more of these little white beans to your diet to experience better overall health.