Goodness of mung beans

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Đ ậu xanh (mung beans) are a common ingredient in Vietnamese cuisine. Mung beans are added to rice dishes, used in soups (especially in chè sweet soup), and ground into flour to make cakes.

But the humble mung beans have some surprisingly nutritious tricks up their sleeves. According to the herbalist Nguyen Cong Duc of the Ho Chi Minh City University of Medicine and Pharmacy, mung beans are a sweet and cooling food. They help in detoxing the body.

Mung beans act as a diuretic, help fortify the stomach, and decrease fat. The beans are rich in potassium and sodium, so they lower blood pressure.

Herbalist Duc suggests incorporating mung beans into your diet with these recipes:

- To fight aging and fortify the skin, try the mung bean and pork liver porridge. In a pot, take 100g mung beans and 100g rice. Cook on a high flame with a liter of water for 30 minutes. Simmer and stir until the mixture achieves a porridge-like consistency. Add the 100g sliced pork liver and cook until the meat is browned through. Season with salt and sugar.

- To prevent and fight sunstroke, cook 50g mung beans, 50g rice and two bowls of water on a high flame for 20 minutes until it becomes like porridge. This bean dish also helps prevent high cholesterol.

- To cool the body, to treat fever and to stop nosebleeds, try this sweet soup. Cook 50g mung beans and 200g lotus root with two bowls of water on a high flame for 30 minutes until the beans and lotus root become soft. Season with sugar.

- To detox after a bout of food poisoning, boil 120g mung beans, 60g cam th^o (fresh licorice) and two bowls of water on a high flame for 30 minutes. Have this soup right after food poisoning for a complete detox.

- To remove toxins such as mercury and arsenic from your system, have mung beans with egg whites. Mix 50g mung bean powder with 100g egg whites and cook on a medium flame until the egg is cooked through.

- To treat digestive disorders and relieve measles rash, make a sweet soup of red and green mung beans. Boil equal portions of red and green mung beans in water for 30 minutes or until soft. Season with sugar.

- To treat hangovers, wash a handful of mung beans in boiling hot water. Pound the beans in a mortar. In a cup, take a spoonful of the pounded beans and add boiling water. When cool, drink the filtered bean water.

Alternatively, boil crushed mung beans with a pinch of tea leaves in water for 10 minutes. Let the mixture cool before drinking it slowly.

- To control diabetes, boil 200g mung beans, two sliced pears, 250g c^ c^i (turnip) in three bowls of water for 45 minutes until cooked through. Regular consumption of the dish helps regulate blood sugar levels.

- To stop nausea, cook 16g mung beans and 16g d^^ng phèn (rock sugar) with two bowls of water on a high flame for 20 minutes. Filter and drink the bean soup.

Alternatively, grind 100 mung beans with ten peppercorns in a food processor. Take a spoonful of the powder and add hot water to make an anti-nausea drink.

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