You may have heard that pressure cooking beans removes the harmful lectins which some say can not only upset your digestion but also damage the lining of your gut, and even lead to leaky gut syndrome. In fact, if you are familiar with the Plant Paradox and Dr. Steven Gundry then you are likely aware that elimination of lectins to help reverse this damage is one of the pillars of the Plant Paradox diet. Doing a vegan Plant Paradox diet is hard, because the standard Plant Paradox diet eliminates legumes and lentils, traditionally good sources of protein for vegans, because of their lectins.
Says Dr. Gundry, “Turns out, if you ingest too many lectins or plant proteins, they can penetrate the cells which line your intestines. These cells form a barrier, helping to keep harmful microbes, and other pathogens, from entering your gastrointestinal tract. When this barrier is broken, immune system problems can result. In some cases, people can experience symptoms similar to food poisoning.”
However, Dr. Gundry also recommends that if you are trying to do a vegan Plant Paradox diet that you do eat beans, so long as they are first pressure cooked because, as he and others point out, pressure cooking beans can eliminate nearly all, if not all, of the lectins in beans. (If you don’t have a pressure cooker Dr. Gundry recommends that you buy Eden brand beans, because Eden pressure cooks their beans.)
In fact, it turns out that Eden pressure cooks their beans right in the can. Which means that so can you!
How to Remove Lectins from Canned Beans by Pressure Cooking Them in the Can at Home
In order to do this, at least smartly and safely, you will need a ‘smooth edge’ can opener, in other words one that removes the top of the can along the edge of the seam so that it doesn’t leave a sharp, jagged edge. We have and can recommend this one by Hamilton Beach, but there are other brands as well.
In addition to a smooth-edge can opener, you will, of course, need a pressure cooker. :~)
A can of beans (make sure it doesn’t have a plastic lining)
Open the can of beans with the smooth-edge can opener. Remove the lid and set aside (keep the lid!)
Add at least the minimum amount of water to your Instant Pot (so 3/4 of a cup for a 3 quart, 1 cup for a 6 quart, 2 cups for an 8 quart), and then set the opened can of beans inside the pot. Depending on the size of your Instant Pot (or other pressure cooker), you may be able to do one, two, or three cans of beans at a time. We use our 6-quart for this, and do two cans of beans at a time. We also leave the label on, but you don’t have to.
Lock the lid on your Instant Pot, close the valve, and set it to manual, 20 minutes. As it is coming to pressure you may hear the can rattling around a bit inside your Instant Pot – that is fine and nothing to worry about.
Let the pressure release naturally, then open the lid and let the beans cool completely.
If you aren’t going to use the beans right away, you can fit the top right back onto the can and put them in the refrigerator!
Lid Fitted Back on Can for Storage
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