Beans and Legumes: Gut Healthcare Cuisine

Industry: Healthcare

Intermountain Health Chef Alex Govern shares benefits and recipes that promote guy health and add fiber to a healthy diet.

Salt Lake City, UT (PRUnderground) April 14th, 2023

Eating beans and legumes is a great way to add fiber to your diet and promote gut health, according to Intermountain Health experts.

“Beans are full of fiber and protein, but aren’t typically a fun food to eat. It’s easy to change that,” said Alex Govern, chef for Intermountain Health. “Dressing legumes with fats and acids, like olive oil and lemon zest, fresh tomatoes and peppers, herbs and seasonings, creates a more beautiful, and much tastier, experience.”

Gut health is essentially the health of the digestive system. Because the colon is part of the digestive system, the food plays an important role in the colon’s health.

Beans are high in fiber and can increase the volume of good bacteria in the gut, supporting gut health. They also are a cost-effective plant-based protein that can be part of plant-forward meals, or those that make plant foods – most often, vegetables – the focus of each meal, without necessarily excluding animal products.

“People should try to replace one animal-based protein with a dish containing beans or legumes twice a week,” Govern said. “It’s a cost-effective change and will have lasting benefits to their gut and colon health.”

Govern recommends trying Intermountain’s recipe for Rustic Cannellini & Tomato Pastiche – or hodgepodge mixture – to dress up beans. He also offers a tip: Soaking dry beans overnight can improve their texture, bring out their flavor, and reduce gas in the digestive system.

“Spring is almost here, and we love this dish,” Govern said. “It’s full of textures, bright colors, and lots of love. To your health!”

Rustic Cannellini & Tomato Pastiche*

Recipe yields 4 servings


Dried cannellini beans – 8 oz (4 oz cooked per person)

Zest and juice from 3 lemons total – (2 for dressing the beans, 1 for the garnish)

Fresh dill, minced – 1 tsp (additional dill for garnishing the dish)

EVOO – 2 fl oz, additional for garnishing the entire dish

Roasted garlic – 1 tsp

Ingredients continued

Arugula – 8 oz

Baby kale – 8 oz

Cherry tomato, halved – 4 oz

Bell pepper, thinly sliced – 4oz

Rough-chopped pistachio – 2 oz

Salt and pepper to taste

Scallion and fresh dill to garnish

  • Soak the beans overnight in the refrigerator; use a 2:1 ratio of water to dried beans
  • Drain the uncooked beans and boil in lightly salted water – approx. 60-75 min or until tender
  • Drain the cooked beans, gently toss with EVOO, lemon juice, lemon zest, and roasted garlic, and reserve at room temperature for the dish assembly
  • Using a large platter for family style consumption, or several smaller plates per identified need:
  • Combine the kale and arugula, creating a base for the rest of the outlined components
  • Top the greens with tomato and bell pepper
  • Lightly drizzle with EVOO
  • Gently add the dressed cannellini beans
  • Garnish with pistachio, lemon zest, lemon juice, scallion, and dill
  • Season with salt and fresh cracked pepper

About Intermountain Health

Headquartered in Utah with locations in seven states and additional operations across the western U.S., is a nonprofit system of 33 hospitals, 385 clinics, medical groups with some 3,900 employed physicians and advanced care providers, a health plans division called SelectHealth with more than one million members, and other health services. Helping people live the healthiest lives possible, Intermountain is committed to improving community health and is widely recognized as a leader in transforming healthcare by using evidence-based best practices to consistently deliver high-quality outcomes at sustainable costs. For more information or updates, see

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