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Heart-Healthy Recipe: Black Bean Soup
Published: 2/15/2013

Black beans, also known as "turtle beans," are an especially tasty variety, and make a lovely soup. As with most dried beans, they are inexpensive while offering a bounty of fiber, protein, folic acid, potassium and magnesium. Do not salt dried beans while they are cooking as the salt slows down the softening process. And a word about the sherry commonly added to this soup: forget "cooking" wines or sherries. They contain lots of added salt and very little in the way of flavor. Do your palate and your body a favor and use a drinkable sherry in this recipe.

Food as Medicine

A recent study from the Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry found that, of all beans and legumes, black beans are the most antioxidant-rich (they contain the same anthocyanins found in dark red fruits such as grapes and cranberries). The antioxidants in black beans prevent cholesterol from being oxidized by free radicals in the bloodstream, a process that may, left unchecked, lead to plaque formation on blood vessel walls and, ultimately, atherosclerosis. Additionally, just one cup of black beans contains 20 percent of the Daily Value for iron; however, black beans also contain polyphenols known as tannins that prevent the full absorption of iron, so the amount of iron the body can actually use is somewhat lower.

Make Black Bean Soup today!

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