Do you think that facial treatments are all about heading towards the salon and shelling out lots of bucks? Well, the humble mung beans (Green Gram) lying in your kitchen can be a great alternative to them. Whether you have a serious time crunch or are just not ready to slather chemicals on your skin, at-home mung bean facial treatments can be your savior. All you need to do is ditch your store-bought scrubs, packs, and masks for a few simple and easy to practice mung bean facial treatments. Here are the benefits and recipes you should know about.
What are Mung Beans?
Mung beans (also named green grams or golden grams) are small olive-green pulses from a plant species called Vigna radiate, which belongs to the legumes (Leguminosae) family. Originated in the warm lands of India, these beans have now become widely popular as a food and animal forage crop in China, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Hong Kong, and West Australia for their balanced nutritional profile (1). Enriched with carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins, minerals, dietary fibers, and active biochemicals, they offer a variety of health benefits and are believed to aid many ailments (2). However, the best thing about these energy-packed, slightly sweet beans is that they are extremely versatile. They not only come filled with nutrients but also offer skincare benefits. In fact, they have long been used for their anti-aging and radiance-boosting properties.
Mung beans are sold in both fresh and dried forms. They can further be whole or split. Sprouted mung beans are also very nutritious and incredibly popular among health enthusiasts.
Nutrition Profile of Mung Beans
According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), mung beans nourish us from within by delivering plenty of essential nutrients like proteins, carbohydrates, fats, dietary fibers, vitamins (B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, and B9 or folate), and minerals (iron, copper, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, zinc, manganese, and selenium) (3). Being one of the best plant-based protein sources, they are rich in essential amino acids (phenylalanine, leucine, isoleucine, valine, lysine, arginine, etc.) too (4). Mung beans are also known to be an amazing source of plant starches and enzymes (5). The calorie content of the beans is 212 calories.
Sprouting changes the nutrition value of mung beans. It increases the amounts of antioxidants and amino acids in the beans while the levels of anti-nutrients like phytic acid go down and the number of calories become lower.
Health Benefits of Mung Beans
Before digging into the benefits of mung beans for our facial skin, let us check out a few impressive health benefits offered by the pulse:
- Mung beans have very high levels of antioxidants like flavonoids, phenolic acids, cinnamic acid, caffeic acid, and so on (6). This helps in preventing free radical damage, which reduces the risk of developing chronic inflammation, cardiac diseases, cancer, etc. (7).
- The anti-inflammatory properties of mung beans can provide protection against heat stroke by reducing high body temperatures and thirst. Antioxidants vitexin and isovitexin in the beans also help in alleviating heat stress (8).
- Studies have revealed that mung beans can lower the levels of bad cholesterol (low-density lipoprotein or LDL) in the body, thus reducing the risks of heart diseases to a great extent (9).
- Being a wonderful source of potassium, magnesium, and dietary fibers, mung beans are highly effective in minimizing the risk of high blood pressure. This keeps us away from stroke, heart attack, and even untimely death (10).
- Mung beans are loaded with dietary fibers that promote our digestive health by facilitating regular bowel movement (11). Resistant starch in them also helps in it by nourishing the healthy gut bacteria.
- High protein and fiber contents of mung beans are helpful in slowing down the release of sugar into the bloodstream, which is essential for keeping the blood sugar under control (12).
- Proteins and fibers in mung beans can suppress hunger hormones like ghrelin and boost other hormones like peptide YY, GLP-1, and cholecystokinin that can make you feel full (13). This reduces our calorie intake and aids weight loss too.
- The folate in mung beans is excellent for pregnant women as it promotes the optimal growth and brain development of children. In other words, the beans support pregnancy and prevent birth defects (14).
How Do Mung Beans Help Your Skin?
And now, here is why you should ditch your chemical-based skincare products for those humble green beans:
1. Exfoliates the Skin
Mung bean powder has a mild abrasive texture, which gives the skin a beauty boost by exfoliating it thoroughly. It gently sloughs off dead cells, dirt, dust, grime, and excess sebum from the surface of the skin, thereby unveiling the fresh layer of skin underneath.
2. Steer Clear of Acne
The beans not only help in removing all impurities lodged in the skin pores but also work to clear heat and toxins out of the body. As a result, you get a clean and flawless skin that is absolutely free from acne, pimples, pigmentation, blemishes, and dark spots.
3. Hydrates the Skin
Mung dal may help you restore the lost hydration of your skin effectively by locking its natural moisture in it. The cell-invigorating vitamins and enzymes in them are able to treat even the driest skin while turning it soft, smooth, and supple.
4. Brightens the Skin
The exfoliating and skin lightening properties of mung beans cumulatively work to brighten up the complexion significantly. They are known to fortify the skin texture with vitamin A and vitamin C, which help in enhancing the skin texture too.
5. Removes Sun Tan
Mung beans protect your skin from the harmful UV rays of the sun. Moreover, they eliminate the existing UV damage and reduce suntan so that you can get clear, fresh, and healthy skin with a much lighter tone.
6. Stops Premature Aging
Mung beans are also rich in an enzyme called phytoestrogen, which stimulates the production of collagen and elastin in our body. These two elements are essential for maintaining healthy and youthful skin for long. So, if you are looking for a natural anti-aging solution, mung beans may help you.
Mun Bean Facial – 3 Simple Recipes to Try
1. Mung Bean Facial Scrub
This is a great scrub you can use when you’re in a rush. It only takes a few minutes and will leave your skin looking flawless. The natural mung bean exfoliating scrub is especially beneficial for acne-prone skin. It helps get rid of facial or bodily acne within just a few days of continuous use. Long-term use will drastically improve the condition of your skin, and noticeable effects can be observed within a month.
- Mung beans – 1 cup
- Lukewarm water or warm sage tea – 1 cup
- Any essential oil of your choice (we recommend lavender or rose oil) – 2-3 drops
- A soft face cloth
- Prepare a fine powder out of your mung beans. Ensure that the mung beans you are using are clean and dust-free before putting them into the blender. The best way to do this is to wipe them with a towel. However, do not wash them with water, as they need to be dry in order to properly pulverize them. Pour the powdered mung beans into a bowl and keep aside.
- Next, add the essential oil to the lukewarm water or warm sage tea and dampen the face cloth by dipping it into the mixture.
- Place the damp face cloth evenly over your face and press down lightly with your fingers. Wait for 10-15 minutes so that all the oil, dirt, and grime from your face stick to the cloth and can be lifted off to properly cleanse your skin. Remove the cloth carefully and discard it.
- Pour a small heap of mung bean powder onto your palm. Take a tiny amount and gently exfoliate your face with it, one area at a time. You must use the pulp of your fingertips for this purpose and avoid applying too much pressure while scrubbing.
- Continue the exfoliation for up to 3 minutes. Finally, rinse it off with cold water and pat dry.
2. Mung Bean Facial Pack
If you have some more time to spare, prepare this mung bean facial pack. After applying it, you need only 15 minutes to notice a difference – a squeaky clean face with a reduced tan, amazing radiance, smaller pores, less oiliness, and reduced blackheads.
- Mung Beans – 1 cup
- Lukewarm water – (1/2) cup
- Take clean and dust-free mung beans and grind them in a blender to create a fine powder. Transfer the powder to a medium-sized bowl.
- Pour lukewarm water into the same bowl and mix them together with a spoon. You should end up with a smooth paste. The texture of the paste should be neither too thick nor too thin. Aim for a toothpaste-like consistency.
- Next, apply the paste evenly all over your face, excluding the areas surrounding your eyes and lips. Let it dry for the next 10 to 15 minutes.
- Once the pack turns semi-dry, gently massage your face with your fingertips. Do this for the next 10 minutes to provide a deep cleanse to your skin.
- After the massage, rinse the paste off with either cold or lukewarm water and pat dry.
3. Mung Bean Facial Mask
If you have some more time to spare or are looking for a cheap DIY home spa session, do try this mung bean facial mask. Your skin will feel rejuvenated and fresh within just half an hour. This mask is known for its ability to maintain the pH level of the skin and give it a perfect healthy glow.
- Mung beans – 1 cup
- Plain yogurt – 2 teaspoons
- Just like the previous two recipes, take clean and dust-free mung beans, place them inside a blender, and grind them thoroughly to prepare a fine powder. Shift the powder to a medium-sized bowl.
- Add plain yogurt to the bowl and mix well to form a smooth, thick paste.
- Apply the paste uniformly over your face. Wait for 20 to 30 minutes so that the mask dries up completely.
- Then, rinse it off with cold water and pat your face dry.
Mung beans are an incredibly versatile ingredient that take great care of our health and skin. It is rich in proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, and dietary fibers, which keep us in good shape both internally and externally. Using mung beans for skin can give us a blemish-free, youthful, and radiant appearance, thanks to their great antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is Mung Bean Powder?
Mung bean powder or mung bean flour is finely ground mung beans, which is white in color and used widely in cooking as well as skincare.
How Do You Remove Mung Bean Skin?
Soak green mung beans in water overnight so that their skin becomes loose and easy to separate. In the morning, rub the beans gently in water and the loose skin will come off effortlessly.
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