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10 Delicious Bean Recipes to Help You Lose Weight

10 Delicious Bean Recipes to Help You Lose Weight

Beans receive mixed reviews in the weight loss community. On one hand, they’re a natural food, which experts normally recommend over processed foods to people who want to lose weight. On the other hand, beans contain carbohydrates, and many diets encourage people to limit their carb intake.

So, what’s the verdict? Do beans belong on our plates?

A 2013 study conducted by researchers at Loma Linda University found that “a high-fibre bean-rich diet was as effective as a low-carbohydrate diet for weight loss.” Another study revealed that “bean eaters weighed, on average, 7 pounds less and had slimmer waists than their bean-avoiding counterparts.”

This is good news if you love beans. It’s also good news if you want to eat healthy because research has suggested beans can help:

But maybe you’re not sure where to start when it comes to eating more beans―or maybe you just don’t like beans. That’s not your fault. Most people think the only way to eat beans is to pile them on a plate and starting spooning them up. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Beans are actually a very versatile food. Used correctly, you can add them to a dish and get all their health benefits―without overpowering the other flavors in the meal.

Here are 10 recipes to help you get started with eating more beans.

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1. Quinoa and Black Beans

Since this recipe requires only 15 minutes of prep time, you can move on to other tasks while this tasty meal simmers.

Black bean and quinoa bowl

    2. Corn and White Bean Chowder

    Make a big bowl of this delicious chowder for dinner and save the leftovers for an easy microwavable lunch.

    Corn Chowder

      3. Southwest Salad

      This enormous salad shows just how easy it is to add beans to a meal. And since beans naturally contain lots of fiber, you’ll be making the meal more filling too.

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      Southwest Salad

        4. Smashed Chickpea & Avocado Salad Sandwich

        This versatile chickpea and avocado salad can be used in a sandwich or a wrap. It’s a no-cook recipe, which means faster prep time and fewer dirty dishes. By the way, chickpeas are also called garbanzo beans, and yes, they are a legume.

        avocado chickpea burrito

          5. Snickerdoodle Blondies

          Bet you didn’t see this one coming. Beans are a surprisingly versatile food. Blend them up, and you can increase the fiber and nutrients in these blondies without spoiling the sweet taste. To be clear, these blondies are still a dessert — translation: you shouldn’t eat ten of them if you want to lose weight. But they are a sweet way to get more of healthy the goodness of beans into your life.

          snickerdoodle blondies

            6. Chicken and White Bean Chili

            This meal combines the heartiness of chili with the fiber of beans to help you feel full longer.

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            Chicken Soup

              7. Asian Slaw with Ginger-Peanut Dressing

              Need more easy-to-make lunches you can take to work? Stuff this salad into a plastic container and grab a piece of fruit. This recipe contains lima beans, a healthy legume many people forget about. Even if you didn’t like them when you were younger, you should give them a try in this salad.

              lunch salad

                8. Black Bean and Quinoa Enchilada Bake

                If you’re like me, this recipe had you at “enchilada.” Plus, black beans (and pinto beans) go great with Mexican food. Now you have a reason to crack open your favorite jar of salsa.

                enchilada casserole

                  9. Easy Tuscan Bean Soup

                  You can easily add beans to lots of soup recipes. It’s a smart choice because the beans will make the soup more filling.

                  Tuscan Bean Soup

                    10. Breakfast Smoothie

                    Beans are a great natural source of protein. Add some blended beans to a smoothie, and you can be sipping on a healthy breakfast in no time.

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                    A white creamy breakfast smoothie

                      Now you have 10 tasty bean recipes to help you lose weight and start enjoying the many other health benefits beans provide. If you don’t know how to cook dry beans, or you would like to know how to cook dry beans for less gas, this free guide will help.

                      Thanks to Michelle Jones and Amy Hanus for providing the pictures used in this post. All Photos Used With Permission.

                      Featured photo credit: Skinny Enchilada Casserole/Amy Hanus via fullplateliving.org

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                      Last Updated on January 21, 2020

                      The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

                      The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

                      Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

                      your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

                        Why You Need a Vision

                        Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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                        How to Create Your Life Vision

                        Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

                        What Do You Want?

                        The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

                        It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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                        Some tips to guide you:

                        • Remember to ask why you want certain things
                        • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
                        • Give yourself permission to dream.
                        • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
                        • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

                        Some questions to start your exploration:

                        • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
                        • What would you like to have more of in your life?
                        • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
                        • What are your secret passions and dreams?
                        • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
                        • What do you want your relationships to be like?
                        • What qualities would you like to develop?
                        • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
                        • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
                        • What would you most like to accomplish?
                        • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

                        It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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                        What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

                        Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

                        A few prompts to get you started:

                        • What will you have accomplished already?
                        • How will you feel about yourself?
                        • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
                        • What does your ideal day look like?
                        • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
                        • What would you be doing?
                        • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
                        • How are you dressed?
                        • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
                        • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
                        • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

                        It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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                        Plan Backwards

                        It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

                        • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
                        • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
                        • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
                        • What important actions would you have had to take?
                        • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
                        • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
                        • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
                        • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
                        • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

                        Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

                        It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

                        Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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