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NBSV 066: B.S.-busting on lectins (a.k.a. "antinutrients"); the pseudoscience of "lectin-free" diets

Beans and grains

You’re in for some good old-fashioned bullshit-busting today, all about the idea that lectins (also often called “anti-nutrients”) are bad for our health.

Here's what I discuss in today's episode:

What are lectins?

Why did we suddenly—and recently—start caring about lectins?

Where are lectins found? What foods are high in lectins?

What’s the supposed issue with lectins? Why are they considered “harmful”?

…and why is this incorrect, inaccurate, and complete B.S.?

Listen here:

Important topics and points you don't want to miss:

>> A thorough debunking of the concept that lectins are harmful to our health.

>> Cooking, sprouting, or fermenting destroys lectins in food. Given that the foods highest in lectins are grains, beans, and lentils, which need to be cooked or sprouted to be eaten, we're not actually getting lectins from these foods.

>> If you’ve tried a so-called “lectin free diet” and felt much better on it, all the power to you! The reason you feel better cutting out things like wheat and legumes, however, is likely not the presence of lectins.

>> If you lost weight on a lectin-free diet, it wasn’t the lectins. A lectin-free diet eliminates many of the highly processed, highly caloric foods commonly found in the Standard American Diet, and replaces them with whole foods.

Resources and further reading: debunking The Plant Paradox.

Precision Nutrition: All about lectins.

Harvard School of Public Health: Are anti-nutrients harmful?

Connect with Karina:


Sprouted Gains: Your guide to gaining muscle, losing fat, and fuelling your strength training on a plant-based diet.

ebook Sprouted Gains by Karina Inkster

Karina's ebook, Sprouted Gains, shows you how to enjoy delicious plant-based foods while making sure you nail your fitness and physique goals.

The best part? You don't have to cut carbs, chug 3 protein shakes a day, forgo your favourite foods, or spend 5 hours meal prepping every Sunday.


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Episode transcript: Access a full transcript of the episode here.

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