After watching him soak and cook the beans, I couldn’t believe that beans are considered good sources of anything – copper, manganese, iron, and whatever else, because they get soaked for so long, and then they’re boiled for soooo long!
I would expect for a lot of the “good stuff” to have leeched out through all of the preparation.
Can you explain why this is not the case?
– Christine Ho
Great question, Christine!
I find it a little odd that your boyfriend boiled the beans for a very long time after soaking them, since part of the reason for soaking beans is to significantly cut down on cooking time.
Another benefit to soaking (and this also applies to grains and nuts) — making nutrients more bioavailable!
Whole grains and beans contain phytates, which interfere with absorption of certain nutrients, like zinc. Soaking significantly reduced phytate content.
PS: That his why why sprouted whole grain breads offer more nutrition than regular whole grain breads.
While this is mainly a concern for mono-diets (diets that mainly consist of one food), there certainly is no harm in soaking these foods if one has the time.
Soaking does not, however, reduce beans’ mineral content.
While cooking beans in boiling water does leach out some minerals, the amount is insignificant — roughly two to three percent. Even after boiling, beans are an excellent source of many minerals.
Remember — the nutrients most affected by boiling are vitamin C as well as all B vitamins.