French beans, also known as green beans or phansi, are a nutritious vegetable that offers a variety of health benefits when incorporated into your diet. Used in a variety of regional culinary applications like sabji, poriyal and pulao, here are nine health benefits of eating French beans.
French beans, also known as string beans or green beans, are a commonly eaten nutritious vegetable. A member of the legume family, green beans are typically harvested while still young and tender. French beans are known for their long, slender shape and vibrant green colour. Available in several varieties, including the common green bean, haricots verts which are thinner and longer, some varieties are also slightly broader and flat. Due to being low in calories, they are a good source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamins K, C, A and folate; along with providing dietary fibre and antioxidants.
In India, French beans are prepared in various ways – which includes boiling, steaming, sautéing, roasting, while they can also be eaten raw in salads, stir-fries and casseroles. Along with this, the vegetable has a mild, slightly sweet flavour and a crisp texture when cooked properly, pairing well with various seasonings or sauces. Here are some of the health benefits when including green beans or French beans in your diet.
High Fibre Content
French beans are high in dietary fibre, which aids in digestion, regulates blood sugar levels, and helps maintain a healthy weight by promoting a feeling of fullness. Including a portion of beans in your diet – in both cooked and raw forms, allows you to keep full for longer and avoid the urge to snack on unhealthy foods.
French beans contain antioxidants like carotenoids and flavonoids, which can help protect cells from damage caused by harmful free radicals and reduce the risk of chronic diseases. The minerals present in the vegetable are also important for various bodily functions, such as immune support, blood clotting, and bone health.
Good For Heart Health
The fibre and potassium in French beans can contribute to heart health by lowering blood pressure and reducing the risk of heart disease. As potassium helps balance sodium levels in the body, eating French beans is excellent for people facing hypertension issues or other lifestyle-related diseases.
French beans are a good source of calcium, essential for bone health. Vitamin K helps in bone mineralization and calcium absorption and hence, consuming 100 grams of beans with food contains the recommended intake value of vitamin K that is provided to the body. The vitamin also enables the bones to absorb protein better, helping them maintain their strength and remained glued to one another.
Low in calories and high in fibre, French beans can be a helpful addition to a weight loss or weight maintenance plan by promoting satiety and reducing calorie intake. The fibre present in French beans supports a healthy digestive system by preventing constipation and promoting regular bowel movements.
Blood Sugar Regulation
The fibre in French beans can slow down the absorption of sugar, which helps regulate blood sugar levels. Eating green beans also allows the fibres to decrease carbohydrate absorption to the intestines, which can prove to be beneficial for individuals with diabetes or those at risk of developing it.
Reduced Cancer Risk
Some studies suggest that the antioxidants in French beans may have a protective effect against certain types of cancer, such as colon cancer, due to their ability to neutralize free radicals and reduce inflammation. The chlorophyll content in green beans, as well as retinoids and folate present in the vegetable, shield the body and improve immunity against harmful diseases.