The other night, I couldn’t fall asleep because my mind was racing. What keeps you up at night? I’m sure although there are many things on your list, one of the concerns at the top is wanting to know the differences between types of legumes.
Well, you are in luck!
An article I wrote with one of my professors was recently published. If so inclined to read the whole thing (or just the abstract), browse tables, or look at the pretty (yes, I am of course biased) figures, you can view it for free on the Nutrients website at this link. Our goal in this paper was to help clarify the differences among types of legumes, which is often quite muddled.
In particular, we focused on the important role pulses (e.g., chickpeas, dry peas, lentils, cowpeas, and dry beans like black, kidney, and pinto beans) could play in meeting nutritional needs. For instance, the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans call out 4 “dietary components of public health concern,” including dietary fiber and potassium. Pulses are a rich source of both, and they provide lots of plant-based protein while also being very low in fat. Check out Table 1 to get an idea of some of the differences between different types of legumes. Tables 2-4 will then give you an idea of some of the nutritional differences between pulses and other food groups, including vegetables, protein foods, and grains.
Now, I understand that this may not sound as exciting to everyone as it does to me. But. I think if you take a chance to look at the tables you will be surprised at the dramatic differences. Knowing about important differences between foods empowers you to make the choices that are right for you!
Please don’t hesitate to ask questions in the comment section!