A plant food that provides protein, carbohydrate and fibre. Legumes usually provide Low GI carbohydrate as well as quality proteins and are therefore usually recommended as part of a healthy eating plan. Legumes include chick peas, peas, beans, lentils, and soy.
A legume (// or //) is a plant or its fruit or seed in the family Fabaceae (or Leguminosae). Legumes are grown agriculturally, primarily for their grain seed called pulse, for livestock forage and silage, and as soil-enhancing green manure. Well-known legumes include alfalfa, clover, peas, beans, lentils, lupin bean, mesquite, carob, soybeans, peanuts and tamarind. Fabaceae is the most common family found in tropical rainforests and in dry forests in the Americas and Africa.
A legume fruit is a simple dry fruit that develops from a simple carpel and usually dehisces (opens along a seam) on two sides. A common name for this type of fruit is a pod, although the term "pod" is also applied to a number of other fruit types, such as that of vanilla (a capsule) and of the radish (a silique).