Do beans make you fat or are good for losing weight?

Beans are good for weight loss, as they’re low in calories. Also, due to their high protein, fiber, and antioxidant content, beans keep us full for a long time, burn fat, and help maintain muscle mass!

Are beans high in calories?

Above all, beans support weight loss, as they’re low in calories. A typical serving contains no more than 200 calories!

Furthermore, beans are nutrient-dense foods. They’re particularly rich in quality carbs, protein and dietary fiber!

All beans are low in calories. However, lentils and fava beans have the lowest calorie content. They have fewer than 120 calories per 100g!

Also, most common bean varieties contain no more than 150 calories per 100g.

calories
(per 100g, cooked)
carbs (g)protein (g)fiber (g)
soy beans12310109.2
fava beans10919.57.55.4
lentils1152097.9
black beans13223.78.98.7
white beans138259.76.3
pinto beans14326.299
chickpeas16327.28.87.6
Calorie content of common beans.

Are beans high in carbs?

Beans are good sources of quality carbs. A serving provides between 40 and 50 g of carbs. Most carbs are starch and fiber. Most beans are low in sugars.

Carbs of beans won’t make you fat. We need carbs to function properly. Carbs are the main source of energy for the human body.

However, beans aren’t suitable for low-carb diets, like keto. People on keto should consume fewer than 50 g of carbs a day.[1]

Are beans high in protein?

Furthermore, beans are pretty high in protein. Actually, beans are among the best plant-based protein sources. They contain much more than 10 g of protein per serving.

The richest beans in protein are soybeans, though. They contain 10 g of protein per 100g. Also, white beans (9.7g), pinto beans (9g), lentils (9g), black beans (8.9g), chickpeas (8.8g), and fava beans (7.5g) are great sources of plant-based protein.

Beans are good for a lean body. Protein maintains muscle mass during a hypocaloric diet. Increased muscle mass means increased metabolism!

In contrast, most beans are low in fats. Consuming less fat could help us lose weight as well. 1 g of fat has 9 calories, while 1 g of protein or carbohydrate has only 4 calories!

We need fat to function properly, though. Fat is important for a good metabolism. The best dietary sources of fat are seeds and nuts. Better avoid animal-derived foods, like cow’s milk, dairy, and meat, as they’re high in saturated fat, which is dangerous for the heart.

Why is protein in beans good for weight loss?

First, beans support weight loss because protein in beans keeps us full for a long time.

Hence, beans help us consume fewer calories in a day. They help us follow a long-term hypocaloric diet for weight loss. After all, caloric deficit is key for losing weight.

Also, about 30% of protein is burned during digestion!

Furthermore, the protein in beans is good for maintaining muscle mass while dieting.

In particular, soy beans are good for weight loss and maintaining a lean body, as they’re complete protein. Soy bean protein contains all 9 essential amino acids.

We have to get all essential amino acids from food.

Actually, only a few plant-based foods are complete protein. Besides soybeans, only chia seedshemp seedspumpkin seedsquinoa, buckwheat, barley, spirulina, and amaranth are common plant-based sources of complete protein.

People who follow a plant-based diet should combine a wide variety of foods in order to get all essential amino acids. Moreover, you could boost your daily protein intake, consuming a scoop of a high-quality plant-based protein powder.

On the other hand, all animal-derived foods are complete protein.

Are beans good sources of dietary fiber?

Furthermore, beans support weight loss, due to their high fiber content.

In fact, foods high in protein and fiber have the highest satiety effects. Beans are both high in protein and fiber.[2]

Soy beans (9.2 g per 100g) are the richest beans in fiber. Pinto beans (9 g), black beans (8.7g), lentils (7.9 g), chickpeas (7.6 g), and white beans (6.3 g) are pretty high in fiber as well.

Fiber keeps us full for a long time. It needs time to digest. Also, fiber expands in the stomach, sending satiety signals to the brain. Fiber regulates hunger!

Also, adequate intakes of dietary fiber have been linked to many health benefits, such as reduced cholesterol and blood pressure. In addition, fiber may reduce the risk of insulin resistance, cardiovascular disease and overall mortality!

The American Heart Association recommends consuming approximately 30 g of fiber per day.[3]

Eating beans is the easiest way to really boost your daily fiber intake.

Can beans make you fat?

Beans, per se, won’t make you fat. However, eating high amounts of bread or other simple carbs, along with beans, may make you gain weight, though!

Cooking beans with a lot of vegetable oil could make you gain weight as well. Vegetable oils are calorie-dense foods. Just a tbsp has about 125 calories!

Do beans spike blood sugar?

As a rule of thumb, we should avoid consuming foods with many carbs and sugars. They tend to spike blood sugar levels. These foods make us gain weight.

However, as beans are high in protein and dietary fiber, they have a low to medium Glycemic Load. This means that moderate amounts of beans won’t spike blood sugar levels.

For instance, chickpeas have a Glycemic Load of 11, while lentils have a Glycemic Load of 5.[4]

Lentils, in particular, are great for weight loss.

Furthermore, following a diet containing a wide variety of foods with a low Glycemic Load has been linked to a decreased risk of obesity!

Should I avoid beans to lose belly fat?

Absolutely not. In fact, beans can help you lose belly fat. But, you should be in caloric deficit to lose weight. Thus, you should avoid other calorie-dense foods, such as vegetable oils.

You should eat reasonable amounts of bread as well. A slice of bread contains about 75 calories. Certainly, eating just 1-2 slices of whole wheat bread won’t make you fat.

Moreover, beans taste great with mushrooms, which also support weight loss.

How do I stop bloating after eating beans?

Soak and rinse beans a couple of times to prevent bloating. Rinsing them reduces the concentration of the compounds that make you feel bloated.

Also, soaking makes beans more bioavailable. We absorb more calcium and iron from soaked beans.