LEGUMES (BEANS): The Ministry of Health recommends the consumption of at least one serving of legumes a day, varying them (black beans, pinto beans, green beans, string beans, kidney beans, cowpeas, white beans, and other beans; soybeans, chickpeas, dried peas, lentils, broad beans) and the preparation methods.

  • What else is written in the Brazilian Food Guide about legumes?
  • Serving sizes for legumes
  • Dietetic and cooking techniques: legumes
  • Cultural and historical curiosities about legumes
  • Scientific information about legumes
  • A healthy, appropriate and caring diet
Legume is the name given to seeds that grow in pods. In Brazil, beans are the most widely consumed legumes. Lentils, peas, chickpeas, soybeans, lupines, peanuts and the less known carob are other types of legumes. All legumes are important sources of proteins and fibers.                   Proteins consist of many smaller units called amino acids. Regarding proteins, a food is considered complete or not depending on its amino acid composition. The only legume that contains all amino acids is soybean.
Beans do not have an amino acid called methionine but it is present in rice. Rice does not have an amino acid called lysine. Hence the importance of eating rice and beans together, in a ratio of two parts of rice to one part of beans. This way we are obtaining an excellent amount of proteins in that meal.
Man has eaten legumes for a long time. There are reports that beans have been farmed since Ancient Greece. However, beans already existed in the Americas before their discovery.