They’re great in your Chipotle burrito bowl, but are beans ever really the star of the show? One person who thinks that they should be is longevity expert and Blue Zones founder Dan Buettner. After years of studying the world’s longest-living people, there’s still no better option to put on your plate when you’re trying to reach the age of 100.
In a lecture given by Buettner through the Global Wellness Summit, he broke down what those living in the Blue Zones eat to stay so healthy. While their diets consist of plenty of greens, whole grains, tubers, nuts, and very little animal products, beans are an unbeatable staple in all five areas. “The longevity all-star food is beans,” he says. “If you’re eating about a cup of beans a day, it’s probably worth an extra four years of life expectancy.”
A cup of beans a day for all those extra years of life? Yeah, that’s a pretty solid trade-off, IMO. Buettner’s findings come from researching the Blue Zones for years, where he discovered the longest-living people stick to that full cup opposed to the 1/2 cup recommended by the U.S. Dietary Guidelines. Other studies have shown just how incredible beans are for longevity, too. In a study from the Southeast Asian Journal of Tropical Medicine and Public Health, participants’ risk of mortality was decreased by 7 to 8 percent for every 20 grams of legumes they ate.
Excerpted from Well + Good