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The Magic of Lentils By Mrs Vera West
Lentils are cheap, good and nourishing, excellent for the coming Ice Age-like weather that we are going to get this year in Melbourne, and no doubt elsewhere, given global cooling:
“Scientists have discovered that the humble pulse can have a dramatic impact on lowering dangerous blood pressure levels. New research also revealed that lentils can reverse declines in blood vessel health. The study – conducted on rats – showed that adding the health-boosting food to the diet can effectively block the increase in blood pressure that occurs with age. The findings also indicated that eating lentils can reverse the changes that occur in blood vessels as a result of high blood pressure. Dr Peter Zahradka, one of the lead investigators for the Canadian study, said: “These are amazing results, since they provide a non-pharmacological way of treating diseases associated with blood vessel dysfunction.”
Dr Zahradka and Dr Carla Taylor, from the University of Manitoba recently presented their research at the American Heart Association’s conference in Dallas, Texas. The findings are a continuation of two studies published earlier this year. One of these was a clinical trial which revealed how eating legumes – specifically a mixture of beans, peas, lentils and chickpeas – could improve blood flow to the legs of people with peripheral artery disease, a condition which is closely linked to coronary heart disease and cerebrovascular disease. The second showed that lentils were effective in blocking high blood pressure. Dr Zahradka added: “The most notable finding of the latest study was the fact that lentils could alter the physical properties of blood vessels so that they resembled the vessels found in healthy animals.”
So, lentils of all colours – let us not discriminate here – will help in a wide range of health issues, especially in lowering blood pressure. The best news of all is that dried lentils are extremely cheap and a pack goes for a couple of dollars, less than a loaf of toxic bread. Even organic lentils from the health food shop are cheap. Thus, if like all of us, you are on a budget that is getting tighter all of the time, think lentils. I like chickpeas too, so I wonder if they have the same health benefits? I guess I will have to wait until I get my big government research grant to find out.