Bean there, Done That

We all know how good beans are for you. But sometimes they come with a little (or sometimes, BIG) issue – flatulence.

Should it be any surprise that seaweed comes to the rescue once again? Well, it does. Kombu seaweed has a miraculous ability to make beans more digestible as well as less gas-evoking. It contains enzymes that help break down the raffinose sugars in beans – the gas-producers – which means we can absorb more of the nutrients of beans as well as enjoying them without making it a rootin’ tootin’ good time.

Kombu is also great at reducing blood cholesterol and hypertension. It also is high in iodine. We’ve written about this here before, how iodine is part of healthy thyroid function as it helps carry oxygen to the cells. Beans and legumes are so rich in vitamins, minerals, fiber, and they’re also delicious as well as inexpensive. They’re also said to aid in blood sugar regulation more than almost any other food group so it’s a shame some may skip making them a part of the meal due to their gaseous nature.

It’s easy to use kombu when you’re cooking straight-up beans or even anything, such as soup, that contains legumes.

All you need to do is add a four-inch strip of kombu to the beans before cooking. With soups, add it with the water or broth before boiling. Once the meal is cooked, chop up the kombu and add it back into the mix.

Kombu can be found in natural food markets or in Asian food markets.