Legumes are loaded with nutrients.
Some of the most common types of legumes are beans, lentils, chickpeas, peas, and soybeans.
They’re a great source of iron, especially for vegetarians. One cup (198 grams) of cooked lentils contains 6.6 mg, which is 37% of the DV (16Trusted Source).
Beans like black beans, navy beans, and kidney beans can all help easily bump up your iron intake.
In fact, a half-cup (86-gram) serving of cooked black beans provides around 1.8 grams of iron, or 10% of the DV (80Trusted Source).
Legumes are also a good source of folate, magnesium, and potassium.
What’s more, studies have shown that beans and other legumes can reduce inflammation in people with diabetes. Legumes can also decrease heart disease risk for people with metabolic syndrome (17Trusted Source, 18Trusted Source, 19Trusted Source, 20Trusted Source).
Additionally, legumes may help you lose weight. They’re very high in soluble fiber, which can increase feelings of fullness and reduce calorie intake (21Trusted Source).
In one study, a high fiber diet containing beans was shown to be as effective as a low carb diet for weight loss (22Trusted Source).
To maximize iron absorption, consume legumes with foods high in vitamin C, such as tomatoes, greens, or citrus fruits.