QUINN ON NUTRITION: The talk surrounding lectins | Get Wholesome

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If you have digestive problems that you believe are due to lectins found in beans and whole grains, watch your portions, cook foods thoroughly, and seek informed medical and nutritional advice.


Dream time

Barbara Quinn Tribune News Service

Reader Susan S. writes in part: “Gut health is finally being mentioned more often in the mainstream. But almost never that: There are grains, nuts, fruits and vegetables with lectins that pierce tiny holes in our intestines. I thought you might want to check this out so that you can let your readers know. I know it’s not an easy subject. “

You’re right, Susan, this is not an easy subject.

A recent review on the subject by Registered Nutritionist Kristin Sementelli states, “As with many debates in nutritional science, there are indications that both support and oppose the inclusion of lectins in the diet.”

It is therefore important to fully understand all of the research before forming an opinion.

They are a type of protein found in most plants such as cereal grains, legumes, and fruits. These proteins are more concentrated in black beans, kidney beans, soybeans, and whole grains.

Plant specialists say lectins could help plant seeds sprout. They also help protect a growing plant from fungi and other pests.

However, there is evidence that lectins can damage the intestines and cause inflammation. Some studies even suggest a link between lectins and the development of rheumatoid arthritis. However, very few of these studies have been conducted in humans. Most of them were on rats.