Happy Humpday! My life is insanely crazy right now. I have some new projects on my plate, but more about all that in a future post.
If you read here, ever, then you know I have CKD, now stage 2 and hopefully still stage 2. Beans are a great source of protein that does not have the same Nitrogen load as meat does. This type of protein may help the kidneys not have to work as hard as an animal protein may. However, beans are high in Phosphorus and Potassium both of which may be an issue for someone with CKD. Sticking to serving sizes of `1/4 of a cup to 1/2 of a cup should be the limit. You can always ask your doctor or dietitian to be sure. I generally eat only 1/4 a cup at a time, and not usually more than once a day. However, beans are super affordable and have other health benefits besides just protein. We are starting an eating plan where we will eat 2 no meat dinners a week. This is for everyone’s health, not just mine. These meals will not be Vegan, as we will use cheese or eggs in the meals. Meat is already super expensive and with inflation, it is even worse, especially if you don’t want to eat cheap meat like me. I prefer organic, grass-fed meats. This strategy will help us to afford those more expensive meats that I prefer.
So, what about the pork and beans shown in the image, are they healthy? When you buy canned beans they are very convenient and easy to use. That particular can I must have gotten at Sam’s because it is 7 pounds of beans. I am a label reader, so I would have read the label before purchasing. I do try to buy organic canned items because they generally do not contain High Fructose Corn Syrup, but you do have to read labels if you want to avoid it. I do add a pinch of brown sugar to my beans, but they really don’t need to still be delicious.
According to the label, 1/2 cup of these beans contains 130 calories, 1 gram of fat, no saturated fat, 500 mg of Sodium, 24grams of carbs, 5 grams of fiber, and 5 grams of sugars. There are 4 grams of added sugars, which really is not that bad at all. The sodium is a little high so be sure and be mindful of that. Protein is 7 grams, Iron 10% of RDA, Calcium 4% of RDA, and Potassium 8% of RDA.
The ingredient list is pretty clean with only natural flavors being a possible concern. But, it is the last item on the ingredient list so really not that concerning at all. You can see the full label in the image below.
Plant-based foods may not have as high of bioavailability for Iron, read more about that here.
So, are these pork and beans healthy food? I would say yes! Buy some Health Buddy Melissa art! Check out the travel mug below. There is emerging evidence every day of the health benefits of eating more beans. They improve your gut biome, are low in fat, can lower blood pressure, improve blood sugar, etc.