Eating healthy can be a problem when you can’t seem to find the right ingredients for your dishes. Luckily, Arrowhead Mills has a variety of products that are specifically made to meet the needs of those striving to cook with organic ingredients, products like these packaged organic red lentils. They are an excellent source of fiber and protein, and don’t contain the harmful additives you can find in legume products by other producers.
Each bag of this tasty pulse crop contains 16 ounces of certified organic and kosher red lentils that you can freely include in a diversity of delicious dishes. Use this type of high grade lentil to make pilafs for a Middle Eastern themed dish, use it to prepare splendid lentil-featuring soups, curries, stews, salads, fish-dishes, and dishes combining it with pork or chicken. So when it comes to versatility, great taste and essential nutrients, you can be sure that red lentils won’t let you down!
Nutrition facts about lentils
A cooked serving size of 198g contains 18g plant-based protein and 16g dietary fiber, which makes lentil a perfect natural source of vegan protein and a fiber-rich food. In fact, 30% of lentil’s calories come from protein and it is considered to have the 3rd highest level of protein, by weight, of any legume or nut, right after soybeans and hemp seed. Proteins in sprouted raw lentils feature 10 amino acids like Isoleucine, Leucine, Lysine, Arginine, Valine, Phenylalanine, Tyrosine, Cystine, Methionine and Threonine. Today lentils are one of the most inexpensive protein sources in many parts of the planet.
198g of lentils contain: 3mg vitamin C (5% DV), 3.4mcg vitamin K (4% DV), 0.3mg Thiamin (22% DV), 0.1mg Riboflavin (9% DV), 2.1mg Niacin (10% DV), 0.4mg vitamin B6 (18% DV), 358mcg Folate (90% DV), 1.3mg Pantothenic acid (13% DV).
The same amount of the nutritious legume crop has: 37.6mg Calcium (4% DV), 6.6mg Iron (37% DV), thereby lentils are one of the richest iron sources, 71.3mg Magnesium (18% DV), 356mg Phosphorus (36% DV), 731mg Potassium (21% DV), 2.5mg Zinc (17% DV), 0.5mg Copper (25% DV), 1mg Manganese (49% DV), 5.5mcg Selenium (8% DV).
Lentil has high levels of Slowly Digested Starch (SDS) 30% and low levels of Readily Digestible Starch (RDS) 5%, which makes it perfect for individuals suffering from diabetes. The rest 65% are high grade resistant starch, classified RS1, which is 32% amylose.
Lentils have phytates and trypsin inhibitors, which some arguably consider anti-nutrients. Fortunately, they can be reduced by soaking the lentils in water. To learn about the benefits of soaking raw nuts and seeds, click here.
Health benefits of Lentils
High fiber foods such as lentils are shown to fortify the heart health and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. Folate and magnesium that are present in the edible pulse, also favor the heart. Folate lowers the homocysteine in our bodies which is a major risk factor for heart disease. On the other hand, magnesium improves oxygen, blood and nutrients flow throughout the entire body. We should make sure we consume enough of this vital mineral, because its shortage is often associated with heart problems. So eating lentils more often may contribute to a sound heart.
Lentils have cholesterol-lowering properties. Again this is due to the abundant soluble fiber content. By lowering the cholesterol levels, you reduce the risk of developing a heart disease or having a stroke, because your arteries will be maintained clean.
The fiber in this nutritious type of food also favors the digestive system. Besides soluble, lentils also have insoluble fiber, which helps prevent constipation, diverticulosis and irritable bowel syndrome, as it promotes smooth bowel movement.
Fiber’s benefits continue, because the soluble fiber stabilizes blood sugar by trapping carbs, slowing down digestion and balancing the blood sugar levels. Thereby, this may be helpful to people with conditions such as diabetes, hypoglycemia or insulin resistance.
Due to their complex carbohydrates and dietary fiber, lentils provide stable, slow burning energy. Besides that, the high iron content in the crop transports oxygen throughout the body and is essential to metabolism and energy production.
Lentils are low in calories and barely contain any fat. For the record, a cooked cup of lentils has barely 230 calories, yet it’s still able to satiate you and make you feel full for long. Namely that is what makes this nutritious food suitable for weight loss diets.