Before I bought any furniture, I bought a pack of refried beans.
Rosarita’s. I love her smile.
My apartment was empty. Mister was still in New Mexico. But when I opened the cabinet there was at least six meals-worth of beans. I was on my way.
Is it weird to admit I’ve always been proud of how much I love beans?
In high school, between the last bell and the beginning of musical rehearsal, I’d pack as many people into my periwinkle PT Cruiser as possible, take them to my house, and make them quesadillas.
They told me the beans looked like poop. I ate them straight from the pot with a wooden serving spoon.
Over a decade later, at a Tex Mex place after my grandma’s funeral, I ate so many refried beans the waiter brought me a hot pink shirt decked out with the restaurant’s name. As a thank you or as a trophy, I never knew. Maybe it was a gift of pity, who knows. That shirt didn’t survive the move, didn’t end up in that apartment with the Rosarita cans, never left Los Angeles. But I survived it!
Once, my dad (who is a doctor, so I believe anything medical he tells me without question) told me that the water in cans of black beans gives most people diarrhea. It’s important to rinse them off before you cook them. I’d never rinsed a single black bean in my entire life and never contracted so much as an ounce of diarrhea. Beans rarely even make me fart!
Honestly, the only food that’s rocked my world in that way was the whole jar of kalamata olives I scarfed down once in college. I wish I could tell you why I did that, but alas, I only carry the memories of the aftermath in my shared dorm bathroom. I guess that’s how life lessons usually go.
But it’s not kalamata olives that hold a special place in my heart. It’s beans.
And I’m excited to report my recent findings on how beans love me back. APPARENTLY according to REAL SCIENTISTS, beans (I mean, legumes in general, but what on earth even is a legume?) prevent cancer, keep your heart healthy, and help you live longer.
I’m not exclusive with veganism — our Facebook relationship would be, “It’s Complicated,” at best — but I’ve enjoyed reading bits and pieces of every vegan mom’s favorite book, How Not to Die by Dr. Michael Greger. The title is triggering, but the science is fun! Sometimes, it feels akin to reading a witch’s spell book: eat a beet for your liver, add extra cinnamon for your heart, a dash of flax seed and your intestines will gain super powers!
It’s more fun to plan healthy meals while attributing meaning to food that has nothing to do with calories and whatever shape my frickin body is supposed to be this summer blah blah blah.
Here’s what Dr. G says, summing up a huge American Institute for Cancer Research study:
“One of [the study’s] summary cancer-prevention recommendations is to eat whole grains and/or legumes (beans, split peas, chickpeas, or lentils) with every meal. Not every week or every day. Every meal.”
EVERY MEAL! Can you even imagine?! I’ve maybe ordered chilaquiles at brunch a handful of times and I’ve tucked into many an English Breakfast, complete with a scoop of baked beans … but like. Every meal? I thought I loved beans, but it turns out I’ve barely scratched the surface!
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When my family got our first computer, a thicc Gateway with Microsoft Windows and ✨dial up✨, checking my mom’s email was An Event. My three siblings and I gathered round like we were listening to the first ever radio broadcast, enthralled by the BEEDDEEEEBADOOOODEEEEEE sound of the internet connecting. One day my mom opened an email forwarded to her by her mother. What could the message be? A message so important it was sent by EMAIL instead of a phone call?
It was a video.
The video was an animated face painted over someone’s bare butt.
A REAL BUTT. We were already losing it.
Then the buttface started talking, something about the health benefits of eating beans. It really didn’t matter what he was trying to say, if I’m being honest, because he was constantly interrupted by his own farting.
It was a hit, an instant classic.
So in summary, it’s been scientifically proven that beans are good for your body. But I also believe that they are good for your soul.
Thank you for coming to my Bean Ted Talk.
If you have an extra second, please read the comment section on this video. It might be one of my favorite things on the whole world wide web.
Ok love you bye!
Only refried beans or pinto beans? And do you cook them with however it comes out as in the can or add ingredients?
I'm Hispanic and I usually go for the pinto (or any other kind of beans like refried) beans from "La Preferida" and cook it in my special way, not just whatever the can comes with (tastes way better this way). It's the only brand we go with that makes the beans taste good with however I cook them. My aunt didn't even know I did the cooking she was so surprised by the great taste. Plus you can only make me eat beans if I cook them, I never eat the beans from restaurants. I'm even picky with how some family members cook them. 😁