A great source of fiber and protein with zero sodium, black beans help support the digestive tract and have a higher indigestible fraction (IF) than lentils or chickpeas. Black beans and other legumes are also key in supporting the regulation of blood sugar because the protein and fiber can move through the digestive tract at a moderate pace, which allows both nutrients to break down foods into simple sugars.
“Black beans are an underrated super food,” says Schuler. The legume’s dark skins are also packed with tons of bioflavonoids (potent plant-based nutrients that can help protect against cancer), which are most commonly found in bright fruit and vegetables. One cup of black beans provides more than four grams of soluble fiber, which have been found especially helpful in lowering blood cholesterol levels and helping to decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease.