The common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris) is grown in semitropical areas of the world. Beans vary in color and shape and are a cheap and nutritious food. They are typically high in protein, fiber, and nutrients, and are usually low in fat.
Early research suggests that beans may reduce cholesterol levels and body weight. They may also benefit people with diabetes. Canned refried black beans may be a good source of iron for those with iron deficiency.
Some studies report that beans act as "carb blockers" by helping to block the process of carbohydrate digestion. A product called Phase 2® Carb Controller (Pharmachem Laboratories, Kearny, NJ) has been found to promote weight loss and reduce blood glucose after meals.

Related Terms

Azufrado, bayo, bean, black bean, cai dou (Chinese), caraota, chícharo (Spanish), common bean, cranberry bean, dark red kidney bean, deogulgangnamkong (Korean), dry bean, dwarf bean, Fabaceae (family), Faboideae (subfamily), feijão (Portuguese), feijoeiro (Portuguese), field bean, flageolet bean, French bean, frijol (Spanish), gangnamkong (Korean), garden bean, Gartenbohne (German), great Northern bean, green bean, habichuela (Spanish), haricot bean, haricot commun (French), haricot vert (French), ingen-mame (Japanese), judía común (Spanish), juldangkong (Korean), kidney bean, Leguminosae (family), light red kidney bean, lima bean, navy bean, nuña (Spanish), ñuñas (Spanish), Phase 2®, Phaseolus acutifolius, Phaseolus angustissimus, Phaseolus coccineus, Phaseolus communis, Phaseolus filiformis, Phaseolus lunatus, Phaseolus maculatus, Phaseolus nanus, Phaseolus parvulus, Phaseolus pedicellatus, Phaseolus polymorphus, Phaseolus polystachios, Phaseolus ritensis, Phaseolus vulgaris, Phaseolus vulgaris L., pink bean, pinto bean, pop bean, popping bean, poroto (Spanish), shelling bean, small red bean, snap bean, string bean, vainita (Spanish), wax bean.
Combination product: Phaseolamin™ 1600 (containing white bean extract [Phase 2®], clove, lysine, arginine, and alanine).

evidence table

These uses have been tested in humans or animals. Safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider.
High cholesterol (Grade: B)
Preliminary research suggests that pinto beans and black beans may lower total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and triglycerides, as well as increase HDL cholesterol. More studies are needed before conclusions can be made.
Cancer (Grade: C)
Eating dry beans may reduce the risk of cancer, according to some research. More studies are needed before conclusions can be made.
Diabetes (Grade: C)
Various studies have found that beans may act as "carb blockers" and slow the digestion and absorption of carbohydrates. A bean extract product called Phase 2® Carb Controller (Pharmachem Laboratories, Kearny, NJ) has been found to lower blood glucose and insulin after eating in both healthy and diabetic people. However, the results are not consistent, and more research is needed.
Diarrhea (Grade: C)
Beans have been found to increase stool output and may be safe for children with sudden diarrhea. Beans may also be safe for newborns with diarrhea after bowel surgery. More research is needed before a conclusion can be made.
Heart disease (Grade: C)
Early research suggests that eating beans may reduce the risk of heart disease. More studies are needed before conclusions can be made.
Weight loss (Grade: C)
Some studies have found that bean extract may lower body weight, body fat, and waist size in overweight and obese people. Beans may act as "carb blockers" to slow the absorption of carbohydrates in the body. More studies are needed before a conclusion can be made.