Other known as snap beans or string beans, the scientific name of green beans is Phaseolus vulgaris. In fact, this scientific name is shared by different types of beans that are collectively referred to as common beans which belong to the genus Phaseolus. Other types like pinto beans, kidney beans, and wax beans, belong to this genus.
As the name rightly suggests, green beans are deep green in color and have pointed ends. There are numerous varieties that are cultivated in different parts of the world. While fresh green beans are commonly available, this vegetable is also sold in frozen and canned forms. They can be steamed, baked, or stir-fried. Consuming fresh and uncooked green beans in large amounts may cause health problems. Green beans are highly nutritious and have a very low calorie content. Though they are green, these beans are rich in carotenoids. Go through the tables given below for a basic understanding about green beans nutrition. The values given below are meant for green snap beans.
Nutrients in 100 g of Green Snap Beans Boiled with Salt (Drained)
|Vitamin A||700 IU|
|Vitamin B3||0.614 mg|
|Vitamin C||9.7 mg|
|Vitamin E||0.45 mg|
|Vitamin K||16 µg|
Nutrients in 100 g of Canned Green Snap Beans (Regular)
|Vitamin A||321 IU|
|Vitamin B3||0.200 mg|
|Vitamin C||2.2 mg|
|Vitamin E||0.21 mg|
|Vitamin K||7.3 µg|
* Source: USDA National Nutrient Database
Green beans contain various nutrients with antioxidant properties. They include beta carotene, vitamin C, carotenoids, etc. They have considerable amounts of omega-3 fatty acids too. So, these beans are good for the cardiovascular system. Vitamin A, a fat-soluble antioxidant, helps to control night blindness and other eye problems. With a good dietary fiber content, green beans are also beneficial for controlling high blood sugar levels. If you're suffering from diabetes and hypoglycemia, do incorporate them in your diet. These beans have considerable amounts of folic acid and iron, and are believed to boost fertility. Being rich in folate, green beans may prove useful for warding off depression. They have a high level of vitamin K that is good for bone health. Green beans contain various other nutrients that are essential for the proper functioning of the body.
If you are planning to lose weight, you should include fresh green beans in your diet. The healthiest method of preparation is to boil them without salt. Choose fresh beans with a soft and smooth skin. Avoid those with black or brown spots. You can grow these beans at home.