a superfood and water decontaminating potential?

Joao Tomas Weather Portugal 3 mins
A measure of lentils, a food that has been part of the human diet since Neolithic times.
A measure of lentils, a food that has been part of the human diet since Neolithic times.

The lentil is a very popular legume in the world diet, but with a more traditional expression in Asia. In recent years, the change in dietary habits at European level, namely the substitution of meat and fish consumption for legumes such as lentils, beans and peas, has allowed the former to express themselves in vegetarian diets , vegan and gluten-free.

(…) the way we look at this type of legume is perhaps changing (…)

More recent studies show that the lentil, in addition to being rich in nutrients, is also the guardian of a considerable number of rare earths, a group of 17 chemical elementswhich when mined become malleable and ductile soft metals with various field applications.

Certain plants and fungi present on planet Earth are known to accumulate certain micronutrients (or trace elements), in a process called “hyperaccumulation”. Lentil is one of those plants, which has a very efficient absorption mechanism. This information suggests that the lenses will have at least two extremely important applications in the future.

What lenses do we want in the future?

Given how the lens absorbs certain micronutrients and rare earths, starting to use them as filters, it could play an important role precisely in the filtration of water from mining operations. The concentration of the rare earths present makes it possible to “treat” the polluted water from certain mining operations, which can thus reintegrate into the water cycle.

In addition, studies point to the impossibility for traditional water pollutants to enter the food chain, since the refined absorption system of lentils leaves out the main micropollutants that affect groundwater, rivers and the public supply network.

Another of the lens’ future applications will be nutrition, both from an animal and human point of view. From a human nutrition point of view, it is already considered a superfood because it contains about 7 times more protein than soy, in addition to being extremely rich in omega-3s..

It also has a great advantage over other plants: duckweed, being an aquatic plant, does not occupy agricultural land, which is increasingly valuable. Thus, our view of this type of legume may be changing, playing an increasingly important role in our daily diet.

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