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Let's Eat Lentils! - Dietetic Directions - Dietitian and Nutritionist in Kitchener/Waterloo
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Let’s Eat Lentils!

Let’s Eat Lentils!

Lentils are little edible seeds grown in a pod and part of the legume family.   You may recognize lentils used in vegetarian dishes or used in Indian cuisine.  However, how familiar are you with using lentils in your kitchen as part of your tasty, healthy meals?

In honour of February being “heart health awareness month”, this blog is dedicated to raising awareness on the amazingness of lentils and encouraging you to begin experimenting with these in your cooking!

Lentil 101:

Lentils vary in size, shape, colour; they may be are purchased in the dried form, canned or possibly in the pod.  Lentils vary in colour from the most common brown lentil, to the peppery flavoured green lentils, yellow lentils or sweet/nutty red lentils.  Cooking time ranges from 20 minutes (brown lentils) to 45 minute estimated cook time for green lentils.

Nutritionally speaking, I think of lentils as little protein and fibre powerhouses!  Basically, this means that when added to your meal, lentils leave you feeling full for longer by delaying the release of the glucose, which stabilizes your blood sugar.   Therefore, lentils are great for the diabetic wanting to stabilize blood sugars or for the client looking for a filling, high fibre meal to support weight loss.

In 1/2 cup of cooked lentils there are 9g of protein and 8 grams of fibre!  The type of fibre in lentils is mostly the cholesterol lowering kind, namely soluble fibre.  Therefore, lentil consumption is beneficial in the prevention of heart disease!  Lentils contain magnesium and remember that magnesium is heart healthy because it helps veins and arteries to relax which improves blood flow.  Thus, magnesium helps with supplying oxygen and nutrients throughout your body.
What are the many health benefits provided by lentils? Find out more here! Click To Tweet

Added to your diet:

Lentils can be consumed on their own, added to soups, stews, casseroles or salads to boost your meal’s nutritional profile.  Lentils are relatively easy to prepare and will nicely absorb the flavours of the dish.  Lentils are available all year long and if it couldn’t get any better, lentils are also very budget friendly!

 

Bottom Line:

Let’s eat lentils!  Lentils are a type of legume that supply our bodies with protein, fibre, vitamins and minerals for heart disease prevention and they should be part of your healthy diet.

Stay tuned for one of my favourite soup recipes where I use red lentils!