Fava bean is one of the ancient cultivated crop and like other legumes is an excellent source of perfect protein. An organic superfood that is rich in nutrients and free of saturated fat.
Fava bean is a member of the fabaceae plant family under genus vicia. Its scientific name is vicia faba. This organic superfood is a small and a glabrous annual plant with erect stems that grows to a height of up to 6 feet and thrives in warm weather. A bushy plant have tapering leaves and produces clusters of beautiful pink-white flowers after three months from seeding. And from these flowers develops light green beaded pods that resemble pea pods although much larger and covered with pillow-like material that protects the seed. Each plant yields about 25 to 50 pods.
Let’s have a little bit of history about this “fava-lous” organic superfood. They were believed to have been grown about 6000 years ago during the Neolithic times. Traces of this green legume have been found in the tombs of Egyptian Pharaohs. Fava beans grew abundantly along the Nile River and the great Rameses III was said to have offered 11,998 jars of these beans to the god of the Nile. Ancient Romans and Greeks love them, well, except for the Greek philosopher Pythagoras, who despise the beans.
Why is this organic superfood good for you?
Fava bean is one of the best sources of dietary fiber, which provides a wide range of benefits for your digestive system. It lowers the absorption of cholesterol from the food you eat and helps control your hunger.
It has an abundant supply of essential mineral like calcium, iron, manganese, zinc, magnesium and copper, which are generally higher that in most beans.
This amazing super bean is also known as one of the rare sources of L-dopa (Levodopa), a chemical substance that is being used to treat people suffering from Parkinson’s disease.
Does fava bean have a dark side?
Well, although significantly full of health benefits, there are some possible health concerns that you should be aware of. It is said to contain a rather high level of complex carbohydrates, which can cause gastric problems and abdominal pain when taken excessively. Individuals taking monoamine oxidase inhibitors should avoid fava beans as it also holds a high amount of tyramine, a compound that occurs naturally in some foods that can dangerously increase blood pressure.
For a crunchy, healthy fava snack, here’s what you do… cook dried fava beans until they’re thoroughly dry and slightly fry them in coconut oil until they’re super crunchy. Drain them in paper towels and sprinkle some salt (kosher please). I put a little cayenne powder to spice it up a bit!
Stay fit. Eat more organic superfood.Picture by: Proud Italian Cook