Kindey beans or rajma is a very popular ingredient across India thanks to its easy availability and incredible flavours. But did you know that there are plenty of health benefits you can also gain from eating rajma regularly? Here are some such benefits you should know more about.
Call them rajma or call them kidney beans, but this legume that resembles the shape of the human kidney—and is therefore named after it—is a flavour and nutrition-loaded staple in India. Grown across states like Jammu and Kashmir, Uttarakhand, Punjab, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Maharashtra and Karnataka, rajma is a major Indian crop that is used as a food source as well as animal fodder and green manuring. And while you might just assume rajma is most popular in Punjab and North India, the fact remains that it is consumed with immense gusto all over the nation.
Because kidney beans are such a versatile ingredient, they are used not only to make dal or lentil curries, but also added in stews and salads, especially during autumn and winter seasons. Rajma is traditionally known to be a warming or heat-generating food, which is the primary reason why its consumption increases during autumn and winter seasons when the weather is cooler. So, making dishes loaded with rajma during these months can add a lot of flavour to your regular meals. What’s more, rajma is also very pocket-friendly and easily accessible.
But these aren’t the only reasons why you should indulge in more and more rajma during autumn months. Here are all the nutritional and health benefits you can gain from eating rajma or kidney beans during autumn.
Video Credit: YouTube/Sanjeev Kapoor Khazana
Did you know that a 100 grams of kidney beans is loaded with 24 grams of high-quality, plant-based proteins? This makes rajma a great source of protein not only for vegans and vegetarians but also flexitarians and non-vegetarians. Ensuring you consume plenty of rajma can provide your body with the ability to build and repair muscle tissues while also providing a lot of energy and strength.
A 100 grams of kidney beans has around 25 grams of dietary fibre, making rajma a great source of this essential nutrient. Since rajma has both soluble and insoluble dietary fibre, it can help soften and bulk up your stool, ensuring that you have regular bowel movements and never suffer from constipation. This can especially come in handy during the autumn season as the digestive system tends to slow down a bit then.
Apart from protein and fibre, rajma or kidney beans are also loaded with essential nutrients like folate, which helps with cell growth. Packed with minerals like potassium and iron, kidney beans can also help regulate haemoglobin and improve immunity during autumn season change. So, eating this legume is essential for your immune system.
The combination of high-quality fibre, protein and complex carbohydrates in kidney beans ensures that if you eat a bowl full of this legume, you will feel satiated and full for a long time. In fact, it is this very quality that makes kidney beans a must-have for those who are on a weight loss diet or calorie-deficit diet for weight management or diabetes.
Blood Sugar Control
If you have pre-diabetes or diabetes, or want to keep your blood sugar levels in check, then eating rajma during autumn is a good idea. Because kidney beans are rich in dietary fibre and complex carbs, they can lead to a gradual release of glucose instead of causing sudden blood sugar spikes or crashes. So, consuming kidney beans is a good idea for those who want to regulate their blood sugar levels.
Kidney beans or rajma is packed with high amounts of fibre, which can help lower cholesterol levels. Further, potassium present in rajma can also help keep blood pressure levels in check. Regulated cholesterol and blood pressure levels can combine to ensure a healthy heart, which is why eating rajma for heart health is a great idea.
Rich in antioxidants, kidney beans are packed with anthocyanins and other bioactive compounds which lower the risk of inflammation. This is because these antioxidants help protect the body’s cells from oxidative stress and damage caused by free radicals. So, not only can eating rajma reduce your risk of inflammation but also lower the chances of getting affected by chronic issues like arthritis.