Contributed by: NAPSA
Beans are a wonderful substitute for meat in a variety of dishes. They're high in protein, low in saturated fat, full of antioxidants and contain no cholesterol. In addition, beans are very high in fiber, which can help lower cholesterol even further. High fiber foods may also help reduce the risk of various forms of cancer.
Beans are also high in calcium, magnesium and potassium, a combination of minerals associated with reduced heart disease. Eating beans at least four times a week can reduce heart disease risk by 22 percent, and one cup of beans a day can reduce total cholesterol 19 percent.
Beans are the richest source of vegetable protein. Protein is important to help supply the body with material needed to build and repair body tissues (including muscles, bones, glands, skin, and teeth). They also have complex carbohydrates, which digest more slowly than simple carb foods, thus satisfying hunger longer.
U.S. consumers already eat about eight pounds of beans per year-in pasta, soups, casseroles, veggie dishes and more. They're easy to prepare, and can be a terrific way to impress a special someone with a gourmet, yet good-for-you meal. Consider these recipes from the Goya kitchen next time you're hankering for a hearty, yet heart-healthy meal.
Roman Beans with Heart
Combine beans, artichoke hearts, celery and onion; mix well.
Blend oil, vinegar, sugar, mustard and pepper.
Pour over bean mixture and toss until all ingredients are coated. Cover and chill before serving.
Classic Red Kidney Beans & Rice
Heat oil in saucepan on medium. Add onions, pepper and garlic; cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally
Stir in remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes. Serve over hot white rice.
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