Grains, legumes, and beans, such as kidney beans, lima beans, black beans, soybeans, and lentils, have high amounts of lectins. Other foods with high amounts of lectins include wheat and seeds of the grass family, such as barley, buckwheat, corn, millet, oats, and rye, legumes, including peanuts, and soy, nightshade vegetables, such as peppers, eggplant, and potatoes as well as dairy products, especially those originating from grain-fed animals. In the following article, we will discuss the most harmful lectins.
Most lectins can trigger inflammation and develop what is known as “advanced glycation end-products. C-reactive protein, by way of instance, is one of many lectins found in the human body that is used as an inflammatory marker. Lectins are considered to be immunotoxic because they can stimulate a hyperimmune response. Lectins are also considered to be neurotoxic and cytotoxic because they can damage nerves and cells, ultimately causing apoptosis or cell death, among other well-known health issues.
Moreover, lectins can increase blood viscosity by attaching to red blood cells. This makes red blood cell “sticky” which can result in abnormal blood clotting. Several lectins, such as WGA, can also affect endocrine function and change gene expression. Lectins may even promote leptin resistance, ultimately increasing the risk of excess weight and obesity. These factors can increase the risk of developing other health issues. If you believe you may have any health issues caused by eating lectins, you may want to avoid:
After eliminating foods with high amounts of lectins from your diet, you can further decrease lectins in your diet by:
If you choose to eat beans, it’s important to prepare and cook them properly because eating raw or undercooked beans can be harmful towards your overall health. Phytohemagglutinin is a toxin commonly found in many varieties of beans and they are especially high in raw, red kidney beans. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) eating as few as four or five raw beans may cause phytohemagglutinin toxicity. To decrease lectins in high-lectin foods, consider doing the following including:
Lectins in potatoes, which are a member of the nightshade family, can also be reduced by cooking, although only by 50 to 60 percent. On a positive note, however, most potatoes have digestive-resistant starch which consists of complex starch molecules that resist digestion in your small intestine. These starches slowly ferment in the large intestine where they act as prebiotics that feed healthy gut bacteria. Because of this, healthcare professionals believe that we should only limit and not eliminate lectins from our diet.
Healthcare professionals believe that lectin damage is associated with glyphosate contamination. Scientists make a strong case against lectins due to their potential to be harmful to your overall health. Given the number of foods with high amounts of lectins, however, it would be almost impossible to completely eliminate them from your diet. The list of lectins found in vegetables alone is lengthy and several lectins can actually provide a variety of health benefits if these are consumed in moderation.
Many vegetables with high amounts of lectins also have polyphenols which are micronutrients with antioxidants that play a fundamental role in preventing and reducing the progression of diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and neurodegenerative conditions. Polyphenols are also considered to be prebiotics because they increase the ratio of beneficial bacteria in your gut, which is another important factor for disease prevention and weight management, among providing various other well-known health benefits.
Lectins are proteins in plant- and animal-sources that can be harmful to a person’s overall health because they can attach to cell membranes. Grains, legumes, and beans, such as kidney beans, lima beans, black beans, soybeans, and lentils, have high amounts of lectins. Other foods with high amounts of lectins include wheat and seeds of the grass family, such as barley, buckwheat, corn, millet, oats, and rye, legumes, including peanuts, and soy, nightshade vegetables, such as peppers, eggplant, and potatoes as well as dairy products, especially those originating from grain-fed animals.According to healthcare professionals, eating too many foods with high amounts of lectins can cause nerve damage, lead to cell death, and even promote inflammation while others can change blood viscosity, interrupt endocrine function, and even affect gene expression. However, healthcare professionals argue that eating some foods with lectins can be beneficial as long as these are cooked and consumed properly. – Dr. Alex Jimenez D.C., C.C.S.T. Insight
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