Whether you’re into gluten-free
foods, vegetarian cooking, losing weight
or simply saving money, Alberta-grown
pulses fit the bill.
Pulses (a.k.a. legumes) include dry
beans, peas, lentils and chickpeas, and
they’re grown across the Canadian
prairies. Mountains of white, red and
black beans are delivered to plants in
southern Alberta and shipped around
the world. In fact, Canada is the world’s
biggest producer of lentils and most go
straight to India where they’re turned
into the daily staple, dal.
With all of this low-fat protein right
on our doorstep, it’s hard to find a
reason why we don’t eat more pulses.
Most of the carbohydrate in pulses
is fibre, so the glycemic index is low.
Studies have shown that eating pulses
lowers the “bad” LDL cholesterol. The
fibre in pulses also reduces spikes in
blood sugar and keeps you feeling
full, a boon for people trying to
manage their weight or diabetes. Plus,
pulses contain micronutrients such
as folate, which may protect against
heart disease, and selenium and zinc,
which may boost immune function.
The good news is, you can add pulses
to your meals year round, whether
you’re making a big pot of chili, a picnic
lentil salad, or using gluten-free bean
flours in muffins and brownies.
The warm cheddar and bean dip
featured here is great for a family
barbecue or a summer festival