Here’s Something to Get Your Pulse Racing … It’s the International Year of Pulses

The UN have officially named 2016 the International Year of Pulses, so we think it’s time to celebrate these delicious little guys.

Your first question might be: “What are pulses?” They’re a type of leguminous crop that are harvested solely for the seed. Some of the most common pulses likely to be on your plate are beans, peas and lentils. They really are a vegan’s best friend when it comes to nutrition, so keep your finger on the pulse of this exciting year by brushing up on these key facts:

They’re a superfood.

Never underestimate the nutritional value of pulses. They’re a key part of vegan eating, as they provide plenty of protein as well as lots of minerals, nutrients and fibre.

Growing pulses actually improves the soil.Farming Crops Legumes Pulses

Pulses have nitrogen-fixing properties which improve soil fertility and extend the productivity of farmlands.

You can store them for months, and they won’t lose any of their nutritional value.Chickpeas Pulses

This makes them versatile, and they can be eaten throughout the year without loss of nutritional content.

Humans have been farming pulses since 8,000 BC.Beans

This ancient crop is still as important to us today as it was thousands of years ago.

Producing 1 kg of pulses uses 260 times less water than producing 1 kg of beef.

The huge environmental impact of farming animals for meat means getting our protein from plant sources is better for the planet, other animals and us.

They could save us all from climate change.seedlings plants

The wide genetic diversity of pulses means that we could select climate change–resistant plants. Deriving protein from plant sources such as pulses could also dramatically reduce our carbon footprint and help reduce greenhouse-gas emissions.

They’re delicious.hummus houmous chickpeas

The range of dishes that you can create with pulses is impressive, and they’re not only full of essential nutrients but also tasty. Everyone’s favourite go-to snack, hummus, is a great source of pulse-y goodness. You could try making your own with this recipe for yummy sundried tomato hummus by The Little Blog of Vegan.


Is your pulse racing after hearing about all the astounding benefits of pulses? Grab a free vegan starter kit full of healthy meat- and dairy-free recipes, and learn more about how your health can prosper by eating plant-based foods: