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Mung Beans (Green Gram) Nutrition & Health Benefits

Updated on August 8, 2017
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Rajan is a botany and chemistry major. He has worked as a poultry breeder for 23 years, breeding layer and broiler parents.

Mung Beans

Mung Beans
Mung Beans | Source

Latin Name : Vigna radiata

Sometimes, incorrectly termed as :

Phaseolus aureus or Phaseolus radiatus

Health Benefits Of Mung Beans

Mung beans offer antioxidant, antimicrobial, antidiabetic, anti inflammatory, antihypertensive and antitumor effects.

Here are some specific health benefits of consuming mung beans regularly.

  • Lowers Cholesterol & Heart Disease Risk

By preventing oxidation of LDL, mung beans keep the arteries clear and improve blood circulation. Not only does this reduce inflammation, it reverses damage to the blood vessels.

By preventing deposition of plaque the risk of heart attack & stroke is reduced as well.

  • Easiest to Digest Among all Beans

Though all beans & legumes cause gas & abdominal bloating in some people, mung beans are the easiest to digest. Soaking the beans in water before cooking and also sprouting them reduces this issue.

  • Lowers High Blood Pressure

A study in 2014, published in the Chemistry Central Journal, showed that rats given mung bean sprout extracts for a month significantly lowered systolic blood pressure levels.

It is believed that peptides that are present in high levels in these beans prevented the contraction of blood vessels.

  • May Help Fight Cancer

The high levels of aminoacids, oligosaccharides & polyphenols provide high antioxidant levels not only fight tumors and cancer but also protect against DNA damage and cell mutation.

The flavonoids vitexin & isovitexin have high free radical scavenging activities which help lower oxidative stress, the cancer causative factor.

This was found in a study done by the College of Food Science & Nutritional Engineering at the China Agricultural University.

  • Decreases PMS Symptoms

The various B complex vitamins, especially folate & B6, and magnesium help regulate hormonal fluctuations which cause these PMS symptoms.

  • May Prevent & Possibly Treat Diabetes Type 2

Not only do mung beans lower blood glucose levels, they also reduce total cholesterol levels, triglycerides, plasma C peptides and glucagon levels, as was found in a study done by the Institute of Crop Sciences at the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences in 2008.

Mung beans also improved glucose tolerance and increased insulin responsiveness.

  • Helps Reduce Weight & Fights Obesity

Mung beans are a filling food. The high fiber & protein levels produce longer satiety times due to the double increase of the satiety hormone cholecystokinin as compared to meals that are devoid of these beans.

Therefore consuming mung beans on a regular basis helps decrease food intake, thus lower weight and aid in fighting obesity.

  • Boosts Immunity & Protects Against Infections

The wide variety of phytonutrients in mung beans is not only anti inflammatory but anti microbial as well. These help fight harmful bacteria & viruses, maintain healthy gut bacteria and raise immunity levels. They ensure optimal digestive tract health and thus promote optimum nutrient absorption.

  • Excellent Source of High-Quality Protein

Along with high levels of protein, mung beans contain high levels of globulin and albumin, the main storage proteins. These account for over 60% of their total amino acids.

The other amino acids including leucine, isoleucine & valine make the protein in mung beans, a complete protein.

For vegans & vegetarians, mung beans, therefore, are an important source of excellent and complete protein that is easily digestible as well.

  • Provides Detoxification Benefits

Our ancestors knew about the detoxification effects of mung beans. The protein, tannin & other polyphenols are believed to combine with organophosphorus pesticides, mercury, arsenic and other heavy metals thereby promoting their excretion from the body.

  • Improves Skin Health

Mung bean phytoestrogens have anti aging benefits as they stimulate the production of collagen, elasticin * hyaluronic acid, all essential to a younger, healthier skin.

Nutrients in Mung Beans

Soaking mung beans in water before cooking reduces the causative anti-nutrients like raffinose, stachyose, and verbascose, as they are soluble in water. These anti-nutrients cause the gas and bloating effect usually noted after eating beans. However, these very anti-nutrients also serve as dietary soluble fiber in the large intestine and help keep the stools soft.

In a nutshell, mung beans are:

  • high in protein
  • low in calories
  • high in fiber
  • low in fat
  • low in sodium
  • low in cholesterol
  • contain good to high levels of several B-complex vitamins and some A, C, E and K
  • have good to excellent levels of several minerals among them, calcium, potassium, iron, manganese, copper & magnesium
  • have a low glycemic index of 25 & glycemic load of 4 making them an excellent choice for diabetics
  • easily digestible
  • balances the tri-doshas
  • cooling to the body
  • excellent source of antioxidants & phytonutrients

See the table below for detailed nutrient composition.

Mung Beans Raw (Moong Sabut) Nutritional Values

Vitamins
 
 
Nutrients
Amount
DV
 
 
 
Folate
625.00 mcg
156%
Niacin
2.251 mg
11%
Pantothenic acid
1.910 mg
19%
Riboflavin
0.233 mg
14%
Thiamin
0.621 mg
41%
Vitamin A
114.00 IU
2%
Carotene beta
68.00 mcg
 
Vitamin B12
0.00 mcg
0%
Vitamin B6
0.382 mg
19%
Vitamin C
4.8 mg
8%
Vitamin D
0.00 IU
0%
Vitamin E
0.51 mg
2%
Vitamin K
9.0 mcg
11%
 
 
 
Minerals
 
 
Nutrient
Amount
DV
Calcium
132.00 mg
13%
Copper
0.941 mg
47%
Iron
6.74 mg
37%
Magnesium
189.00 mg
47%
Manganese
1.035 mg
52%
Phosphorus
367.00 mg
37%
Potassium
1246.00 mg
27%
Selenium
8.2 mcg
12%
Sodium
15.00 mg
1%
Zinc
2.68 mg
18%
 
 
 
Source : http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/vegetables-and-vegetable-products/2333/2

About Mung Beans

Among other names mung beans are also known as moong beans, mungo, mash beans, mungu, moong, green mung beans, green moong dal and green gram.

Mung beans are native to India from where they spread to Southeast Asia. They are a natural nitrogen fixer for the soil being legumes.

In Ayurveda, mung beans have been used for thousands of years. Historical evidence shows that they have been eaten in India for more than 4000 years.

Though these beans have not been much consumed in the West, since the past couple of decades, mung beans are getting popular in the US, and a major portion for consumption is imported from India & China, the rest being cultivated in house.

Mung beans are easy to digest, and, in Ayurveda, they are considered to be Sattvic food, meaning, wholesome food.

Mung beans are mostly eaten cooked in the form of dal in India. Soaking them before cooking and also adding various spices to it during cooking aids in combating the formation of gas & other digestive issues that is natural to all beans.

However, mung beans are considered to be much more easily digestible than most beans and legumes.

Mung beans can be eaten sprouted as well and is a popular way of eating them raw.

Wholesome & Healthy Sabut Moong Recipe

In my video below you can see how easy it is to prepare whole moong dal. Not only is it a delicious dal, it is extremely light to digest which is why doctors in India advise even those who are sick to consume this dal considering it is not only easy to digest but has a lot of nutrients as well. The table above shows the wide variety of nutrients present in this dal.

Whole Mung Beans Dal

Mung Bean Sprouts

An excellent way to bolster further the nutrient values of this dal is to sprout them. And it is not only easy but the dal sprouts qiuckly. All it takes is overnight soaking of the dal and another day hanging in a wet muslin cloth for it to be ready for consumption.

Mung Beans

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Sprouted Mung BeansSplit & Skinned Mung Beans
Sprouted Mung Beans
Sprouted Mung Beans | Source
Split & Skinned Mung Beans
Split & Skinned Mung Beans | Source

Mung beans are available in whole, split with the skin intact and split & skinned form. Sprouting the beans not only increases their nutrient availability and digestibility but also their levels.

The tiny mung beans are also a very filling food and offer huge health benefits as well. Ayurveda recommends mun beans as the perfect legume for the sick and combined with rice, as a khichdi, it makes for a perfect diet for the sick and those with weak digestive systems.

Li Shi Zhen (1518-1593), a Chinese doctor & pharmacologist, in his book Ben Cao Gang Mu recommends mung beans not only as a dietary food because of the wealth of nutrients it has but also as a medicine, which Ayurveda said thousands of years earlier..

Moong Dal Khichdi

Watch my video below to see how you can prepare moong dal khichdi, a rice gruel made with made with split & skinned mung beans & rice, a dish light on the digestive system, and so nutritious, that doctors advise the sick, & those with weakened digestive system, to consume it on a regular basis.

Moong Dal Khichdi

Mung Bean Dishes

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Moong dal Halwa is an Indian sweet dish made of split & skinned mung beans generously mixed with dry fruits and cooked in ghee.This is moong dal tadka, an Indian dal also called dal fry.
Moong dal Halwa is an Indian sweet dish made of split & skinned mung beans generously mixed with dry fruits and cooked in ghee.
Moong dal Halwa is an Indian sweet dish made of split & skinned mung beans generously mixed with dry fruits and cooked in ghee. | Source
This is moong dal tadka, an Indian dal also called dal fry.
This is moong dal tadka, an Indian dal also called dal fry. | Source

Always Consult Your Physician

The information provided in this hub is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult your physician, or health care provider before taking any home remedies, supplements or starting a new health regime.

References

  • http://www.wellandgood.com/good-food/why-mung-beans-are-healthy-recipe/
  • http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20801948
  • http://www.pingminghealth.com/article/281/mung-beans-can-clear-heat-reduce-acne-and-detox-the-body/
  • http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22980894?dopt=Abstract&holding=f1000,f1000m,isrctn
  • https://www.greenmungbeans.com/health-benefits/
  • http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18767859
  • https://www.greenmungbeans.com/green-mung-beans/
  • http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20801948
  • http://jn.nutrition.org/content/131/5/1485.full.pdf
  • http://www.pulsecanada.com/uploads/1b/58/1b585a3531539319b8276ac01e101d29/PC_WC_factsheet_FINAL_LR.pdf
  • http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3899625/

© 2016 Rajan Singh Jolly

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    • rajan jolly profile image
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      Rajan Singh Jolly 2 months ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      I have fixed the videos now. I am not sure why there was no notification about the links not working as these are always reported. Anyway, you can see the videos now. I appreciate your interest Peggy. Thank you.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Most beans have really good nutritive values. I did not realize that the mung bean was so easily digested and more easily tolerated compared to others. I need to purchase some and fix them for us. By the way, neither of your videos worked. I was going to watch them and apparently they are now unavailable.

      I love learning about nutrition of different foods from you. You always do such an excellent job of writing these articles.

    • rajan jolly profile image
      Author

      Rajan Singh Jolly 2 months ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      swalia, yes, it would certainly do a world of good. Thanks for reading.

    • swalia profile image

      Shaloo Walia 2 months ago

      Wow...So many benefits!!! I don't like it but I guess,I should start eating it now.

    • rajan jolly profile image
      Author

      Rajan Singh Jolly 3 months ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      Thanks for your input Chitrangada. Mung beans are among the lightest of dals and I believe the easiest on the digestive system. I'm sorry this reply to your comment comes is so late as this and a few other comments were overlooked.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 7 months ago from New Delhi, India

      Great article about Mung beans! You have included almost every detail about this super food. We include this nutritious bean almost regularly in our diet.

      Thanks for sharing this excellent and well presented hub!

    • profile image

      teaches12345 9 months ago

      I am willing to try them, especially as they help with anti-aging skin. Good for the body and soul.

    • profile image

      FlourishAnyway 9 months ago

      I've also missed you, Rajan. Good article. Never heard them called mung beans nut I like them a lot and cook them often.

    • rajan jolly profile image
      Author

      Rajan Singh Jolly 9 months ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      Bill, so good to see you again. I missed being here too. Appreciate your stopping by.

      Venkatchari M, I am sure most of us love this dal and have it at least once a week. Good to know you have this healthy dal more often. Thanks for reading my hub.

      MsDora, great to know you've tasted the Indian style of preparation of this lentil and like it. My videos in this article show 2 ways this dal is used. Thanks for your continued support of my articles.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 9 months ago from The Caribbean

      I've had mung beans dal at an Indian restaurant. Very tasty, and thanks to you I now know that it is very nutritious. Thanks for sharing the facts.

    • Venkatachari M profile image

      Venkatachari M 9 months ago from Hyderabad, India

      Very useful and informative hub. I prepare moong sabut dal 2, 3 times in a month and split mung dal also sometimes.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 9 months ago from Olympia, WA

      I'm missed these food articles from you. My education has been sorely lacking. Thanks for broadening my knowledge.