Are Green Beans Primal or Paleo? Do You Eat Them? Are They Healthy For Us?

I LOVE green beans. But, are green beans primal or paleo? Technically they are a legume. Legumes such as lentils, peanuts, black beans, red kidney beans, etc contain lectins which prevents our body from absorbing certain nutrients. And, we apparently did not eat them before the agriculture revolution.

But, is it possible that green beans are a different animal? I mean, they are a “bean” and technically a legume so should one not eat them? Do we have to worry about their lectin content? When you look at the nutritonal profile it is pretty attractive. But, so are other legumes and we don’t eat them. But, green beans are very unique and very different than a traditional bean such as kidney, black, garbonzo, etc.

When you compare by cup, green beans contain only 34 calories while black beans contain 227 calories. Half of a green beans’ carbohydrate content is fiber, where as a black bean has a lot more starch. All that I’m saying is that a green bean seems to be quite different than a normal legume. So, are they safe to eat?

I say yes. But, why?

Well for starters… Mark Sisson includes them in a recipe from The Primal Blueprint Cookbook. Also, Robb Wolf includes them in a recipe from his book that was released one week ago, The Paleo Solution. I still wanted to make sure so I researched Google and found the following thread on the MDA Forum: Are Peas and Green Beans Okay?

If you scroll down to the end you will see where Fiddlestix said the following…

Sorry to resurrect a somewhat old post, but green beans were just mentioned on Robb Wolf’s podcast “the Paleolithic Solution” and i thought it was worth sharing:

He points out that the reason most legumes are off negative is the large amounts of lectin and green beans don’t have that. he calls them “benign” and says he eats them all the time.

i think where paleo gets a bad wrap is when it sounds silly when the only reason people know they don’t eat something is because “it didn’t exist 12,000 years ago” when in actuality there is a real reason related to how that food interacts with your body as to why you shouldn’t eat it.

on the same hand, if a legume is lacking the negative lectins and carb load… it is just fine.

So, there you go. I have not listened to the podcast myself but I believe it is safe to say that Green Beans are okay to eat. Sure, they are a legume but the lectin content is low enough to not worry about it.

I personally love green beans as they are available in abundance at my local farmers market. I think I will have to steam some green beans tonight for Dinner!

What are your thoughts? Do you eat green beans? Will you now if you have avoided them? What other foods do you think are questionable?

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  1. […] Living in the south has changed me. I know, I know, I’ve said stuff like this before! It’s true! I used to be all about foods exotic and foreign. Now I find myself making dishes like biscuits and white gravy, pot pies, and chicken fried steak…ok, maybe not the chicken fried steak. And last but not least, there’s GREEN BEAN CASSEROLE! When did I start loving this stuff? Probably about the time I couldn’t have cream of mushroom soup anymore. But true to form, I will not be put out by theses silly restrictions (in fact, they are not silly at all. They have saved my life).I present to you, a green bean casserole with it’s very own home made dairy free ‘cream of mushroom’ gravy and crispy fried shallots. This dish stands on it’s own. It’s not some sorry substitute. However, I will say that no one will believe you if you tell them it’s dairy free. The ‘creaminess’ is quite heavenly!Are greens beans Paleo friendly? Some say yes, some say no. Technically they are a legume but they have a very low lectin and carb content, which is why legumes are not allowed in the first place. Read more on this HERE. […]