Last Updated on June 29, 2023 by Create Better Health
Have you heard of Meatless Monday? This trend is actually based on an initiative that started during the First World War. The President of the United States, Woodrow Wilson suggested that Americans refrain from eating meat each Tuesday to ensure that there was enough food to send to soldiers fighting in the war and prevent nationwide rationing. Now this trend is still alive, although luckily, it is a health initiative and not related to wartime.
Eating occasional meals that are meat-free is a great way to stretch your budget and has numerous health benefits. There are many ways to make sure that meals still contain protein elements but don’t use meat. These sources include whole grains, nuts, beans, and dairy products.
Eating less meat leaves more room for fruits and vegetables and plant-based protein sources, such as beans. Beans are a versatile cooking ingredient, and can be very low cost. In fact, some researchers claim that using dry beans is the least expensive protein source that a person can buy.
North Dakota State University extension created this booklet all about beans. Beans are an overlooked superfood!
Some of the benefits beans include…
- Beans are full of fiber, which helps us to feel full and aid in digestion.
- Beans are a good source of folate, which is needed for red blood cell production, as well as for the development of a healthy pregnancy.
- Including beans could help to lower the risk of heart disease and diabetes because they contain little fat, and contain soluble fiber.
- Beans can also help to reduce obesity, as they are a filling, nutritious food!
With all these benefits of beans, it is easy to see why they should be included in our diets! Beans are a great option for a healthy and delicious “Meatless Monday” meal. This Monday, I am going to try a falafel wrap recipe. Falafel is a dish that originated in the middle east, and is balls made of a chickpea dough and then fried. We will be modifying the traditional recipe by baking the chickpea patties and serving them in a tortilla as a wrap.