3

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Legumes and beans on Paleo?

Answered on January 12, 2015
Created February 11, 2010 at 9:21 AM

Why is it recommended that legumes/beans should be avoided if eating Paleo?

24fcc21452ebe39c032be6801d6bbadd

(9812)

on October 19, 2011
at 12:40 PM

oops, *"basing your choices "on"...

24fcc21452ebe39c032be6801d6bbadd

(9812)

on October 19, 2011
at 12:36 PM

When I was starting out, I was really skeptical about cutting legumes (I always assumed they were super healthy); after not having them for a few months, I had a bowl of chili with beans and my stomach felt awful the next day- it felt like a bad gluten reaction. That was enough for me! I use "is it edible raw?" as a rule of thumb, but try not to get bogged down in re-enactment (just basing your choices one what cavemen would or wouldn't eat); it'll probably take some time to figure out what foods make you feel bad, and what foods make you healthier.

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11488)

on February 14, 2010
at 03:38 PM

Hi Geoff; did you mean "elicit"?

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8 Answers

best answer

6
8316be0c30dec093fc5c3a09ea69a218

(183)

on February 12, 2010
at 08:22 PM

Because they generally need to be cooked in order to be edible. They also contain lectins and phytates which tend to interfere with nutrient absorption and can be somewhat inflammatory.

5
Fbbbdf1d0a7d6d5067a106af062c7ce6

(745)

on February 13, 2010
at 06:16 AM

As a bit of a side note, green beans are extremely low on the lectin load, so some (including Robb Wolf, which he mentions in his weekly podcast - http://robbwolf.com/2010/01/26/the-paleolithic-solution-episode-12/) don't stress about adding them into their diet.

Bacon-wrapped green beans smothered in grass-fed butter! I dare you NOT to eat them :)

3
95ab15c8ef50ff0daf87ccbdd52cd3b8

(2384)

on February 14, 2010
at 12:27 PM

I eat green beans -- typically blanched, then sauteed in bacon fat with garlic (or occasionally, in ghee with red pepper and black mustard seeds, Indian style). Sometimes I throw them into stir frys. The lectins are, as Mike said, minimal. They're quite healthy, on balance, and my kids will eat 'em, which is reason enough for me to continue.

Once in a very blue moon I will make black beans or red beans following the WAPF procedure (because my family loves them), but that's rare, and it's even more rare since I gave up eating rice, because eating the beans without rice is Just Not Right.

HealthRediscovery, the reason to "bother" with elaborate preparations every now and then is because variety is the spice of life. I occasionally make coq au vin or carne seca or other dishes that require hours of puttering on a Sunday afternoon. The food is incredibly good and friends and family are appreciative. I know for some people "paleo" means grilled-meat-and-salad over and over, and I know that some authorities are kind of dismissive of any cooking more complicated than opening a jar of salsa because it's too "neolithic", but it doesn't have to be that way!

2
B4efa74559ea877677261b61ec229592

(110)

on February 13, 2010
at 02:46 PM

Some, such as peanuts, have awful omega-6 to omega-3 imbalance. http://www.nal.usda.gov/fnic/foodcomp/search/index.html is a good source of nutrient values.

1
Eae21abfabb19c4617b2630386994fd9

on February 13, 2010
at 04:25 PM

To avoid most of the downsides of beans others have mentioned, you need to go through a somewhat elaborate preparation as per WAPF guidelines: http://www.trit.us/foodfeatures/cooking-legumes.html

This could be perfectly healthy, but why bother?

0
Medium avatar

(167)

on January 12, 2015
at 06:41 AM

Beans in their raw state will tear up your digestive tract and fill you with all kinds of anti-nutrients, leading to severe nutritional deficiencies if eaten over the long term. Our pre-fire caveman ancestors probably could not stomach beans for this reason. 

However, we have a few thousand years after that where our ancestors ate tons of beans. In some cultures, bean intake outstripped meat intake by a lot. If you want to do Paleo "correctly," than cut the beans. However, if you're just into Ancestral Eating, do some research on how your great-great-grate-great-great-great grandmother prepared beans, and follow her lead! (hint: her beans didn't come in a can)

Beans actually cause less of an insulin response than sweet potatoes, a paleo-safe starch. 

0
A17bb4537804d40cef25eeba57f59616

(0)

on October 19, 2011
at 05:58 AM

I'm somewhat new to this Paleo thing but to my understanding it's basically allowing only foods that our great ancestors ate and the human body adapted to over the last few million years. So the best answer to "No Legumes" is because they have to be cooked to be edible? Are you saying that our ancestors never cooked beans or green beans??

24fcc21452ebe39c032be6801d6bbadd

(9812)

on October 19, 2011
at 12:40 PM

oops, *"basing your choices "on"...

24fcc21452ebe39c032be6801d6bbadd

(9812)

on October 19, 2011
at 12:36 PM

When I was starting out, I was really skeptical about cutting legumes (I always assumed they were super healthy); after not having them for a few months, I had a bowl of chili with beans and my stomach felt awful the next day- it felt like a bad gluten reaction. That was enough for me! I use "is it edible raw?" as a rule of thumb, but try not to get bogged down in re-enactment (just basing your choices one what cavemen would or wouldn't eat); it'll probably take some time to figure out what foods make you feel bad, and what foods make you healthier.

0
Dbfd016ec2d477a76d7db6c1538f7182

on February 13, 2010
at 02:49 AM

Not to mention they are also a considerable source of starchy carbs which are illicit quite an insulin response.

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11488)

on February 14, 2010
at 03:38 PM

Hi Geoff; did you mean "elicit"?

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