This week Nutrition Australia released the revised Healthy Living Pyramid – this has kind of been a big deal within the nutrition world since it is the first revise in 15 years. Most media and nutrition folk have had their two cents to say about the new pyramid (read the media release here), so I won’t rehash this too much but what I would like to bring attention to is a very interesting trend that I noticed on social media in response to the new Healthy Living Pyramid.
Now some of you may astutely notice that legumes are featured twice in the pyramid – No, this is not a mistake!! After reading many comments on social media and even running my own little Q&A on Facebook, it seems that many people are confused about which food group legumes and pulses actually fit into. So here it is, legumes like lentils, chickpeas, kidney beans (not so much peanuts although technically a legume) are in fact BOTH vegetables and a meat alternative.
Amazing I know but these little suckers pack such a big nutritious punch that they fit into our five food groups twice!
They are packed with fibre (half a cup of kidney beans contains almost 5g of fibre!) plus a huge range of vitamins and mineral like iron, zinc, folate, B-group vitamins, like vegetables but also contain a great big portion of protein like meat (as well as those fore-mentioned vitamins and minerals also found in meat), – plus they are relatively cheap and hugely versatile so an absolutely fabulous food all round.
Check out some of my favourite legume based recipes:
Bean and Corn Burrito
Mexican Bean Pizza
Mixed Bean Enchiladas
Little Curry Bites
Nikki is a PhD qualified Nutritionist and an expert in children's eating.