Jack beans health benefits – Jack bean is a legume plant that is widely used for human nutrition and as animal feed. Scientifically its name is Canavalia ensiformis, in Brazil this plant is known as feijão-de-porco (pig bean). Jack Beans is a plant from the Leguminosae (Fabaceae) family, it has about 500 genera and is divided into 15000 species, either wild or cultivated plants. It is a plant of tropical Africa and also includes plants of Central and South America, it spreads from Mexico south to Brazil and Peru, and the western Indies. Jack beans have many names according to where they are grown. Among them are Jack bean, Sword bean, Wonder bean, Giant stock-bean, gotani-bean, seaside-bean, horse-bean, Chickasaw, Overlook Bean, limabean, Saber-Bean, Brazilian broad bean, Chickasaw lima bean, Coffee bean, ensiform bean, Pearson bean and Mole bean.
Jack Beans is a vine that grows by supporting itself on other plants, can grow 50-200 cm and some even grow up to 10 meters when it can propagate well on other plants. It is a drought tolerant plant and can withstand extreme conditions and even grows in acid soils with nutrient deficiencies. As a drought tolerant crop, jack beans are also pest-resistant and they don’t like wet soil. It is likely that the jack beans plant can tolerate frost. The root system is very strong and spreads deep in the soil and the roots bind nitrigen with nodules in the roots.
The leaves are trifoliating and appear alternately on the stem. The leaves can be 8 inches long by about 4 inches wide. It has 3 egg-shaped leaflets and the leaves are pointed towards the tip. While the petiole is the same length as the leaf size.
Flowers and Fruits
Jack beans have flowers that are usually papillionaceous rose-colored, white with a red base or purplish in color. It is about 1 inch (2.5 cm) round in shape. If in fertile condition, the flowers can grow up to 12 cm with a width of 3.8 cm. The seed stalk is curved like a sword with a size of 1-2 cm. The pods are light brown when they are ripe. One pod can contain as many as 20 seeds. The color of the seeds is white and the seed marks are brown with a size of 1/3 the size of the seeds.
Health Benefits of Jack Beans
As said above, jack beans are legumes that are widely used as vegetables and as additional nutrients and as animal feed. Now we look at what are the health benefits of jack beans.
1. Reducing the risk of cancer
Jack beans are beans that are rich in antioxidants that are useful for protecting body cells from being damaged or mutated. Besides being rich in antioxidants, jack beans are also rich in anti-inflammatory plants. This is very good for reducing the risk of diseases caused by inflammation such as heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, and others.
2. Good for intestinal health
The next benefit of jack beans is as a food to increase intestinal performance. If you consume jack beans or Canavalia ensiformis regularly, then the risk of constipation and flatulence can be managed properly. it can also dispose of waste properly so that various kinds of intestinal diseases can be prevented.
3. Lose weight
The benefits of jack beans can also reduce weight. The reason is, this fruit is filled with fiber and low in calories so that even though there is a lot of food it does not really contribute to fat formation. Even with just a few of these legumes we feel full. So, these legumes are very suitable as foods on your list to lose weight. Jack beans are also rich in vegetable protein which is great for boosting the body’s fast metabolism.
Also see: How to Lose Arm Fat, The 8 Best Ways
4. Increase muscle mass
The protein content in jack beans is great for increasing muscle mass and repairing it. This is a great food for sportsmen. These legumes can build muscle well if accompanied by certain exercises. For those of you who want to get good muscle mass and stay lingering without gaining weight. You can try routinely consuming jack beans.
5. Good for immunity
Jack beans are a type of bean that is rich in vitamin C. This is an important vitamin in increasing the body’s immunity so that the body is strong in fighting disease causes such as viruses, bacteria and fungi. So, adding jack beans to your daily diet is a great idea to keep your body strong.
6. Beautify the skin
The next benefit of jack beans is to beautify the skin. The high content of vitamin C is very important in keeping the skin healthy and beautiful. Vitamin C has a role such as regenerating skin cells so that the skin is always healthy and beautiful. This is an important antioxidant in the production of collagen so that the skin is strong and not wrinkled.
7. Healthy heart
Jack beans or legumes contain lots of fiber and antioxidants. Both are essential minerals in lowering cholesterol. When cholesterol is stable, the heart is always in good health and well. In addition, consuming jack beans regularly can also prevent high blood pressure. High blood pressure is caused by clogging of blood vessels by cholesterol, so by consuming foods rich in antioxidants and fiber, problems related to the heart can be prevented.
Also read: 8 Healthy Drinks for Heart Health
Traditional uses and benefits of Jack Bean
- In China, the jack beans plant is grown as a whole as a remedy for ulcers and the white seeds are used as a traditional medicine in acting as a bechic, and tonic, stomatic, also useful for strengthening the kidneys.
- In Nigeria, jack fruit is used as an antiseptic and as an anti-biotic.
- C. gladiata has been used traditionally in treating vomiting, lumbago, abdominal pain, lumbago related to kidneys, treating asthma, dysentery, obesity, headache, epilepsy, lumbago, cough, intercostal neuralgia, schizophrenia, swelling and inflammation. This is as practiced in Korea.
- In Japan, this plant is also used as an ingredient in treating cancers, ozena, hemorrhoids, boils, otitis media, pyorrhea, inflammatory diseases and atopic dermatitis.
- Extract from jack beans is used in soap, it is useful for treating water fleas and acne. As in Korea.
- The leaves of this plant are used in Malaysia as a medicine for gonorrhea.
- The plant is pounded and used as a medicine for ulcers
- Young seeds can be eaten raw
- Jack beans are also cooked as a vegetable
- Raw beans are cooked and become a dinner dish
- Roasted beans are also used as a substitute for coffee
- Young leaves can be cooked and are similar to spinach leaves
- Young pods are chopped and cooked as vegetables
- In Cuba, it is used as a substitute for coffee