Enhancing nutrition with pulses: Defining a recommended serving size for adults

Christopher P.F. Marinangeli, Julianne Curran, Susan I. Barr, Joanne Slavin, Seema Puri, Sumathi Swaminathan, Linda Tapsell, Carol Ann Patterson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


Pulses, defined as dry-harvested leguminous crops, include several varieties of beans, peas, lentils, and chickpeas. There is no consensus around a recommended serving size of pulses within a balanced diet, which prevents the development of transregional strategies that rely on consistent messaging to drive increases in consumption. The purpose of this review is to define and disseminate an appropriate target for a minimum serving size of pulses on any given day that can be used in international or collaborative strategies to promote the consumption of pulses. Relevant data were reviewed to examine dietary guidelines across jurisdictions, determine consumption levels of pulses across the globe, evaluate the nutritional composition of pulses in the context of dietary nutrient insufficiency, and assess the impact of pulses on dietary quality. Across a variety of pulses, 100 g of cooked pulses aligned with most regional serving sizes for pulses and provides significant levels of nutrients that are underconsumed by specific age-sex groups. Moreover, 100 g of pulses provides a number of nutrients that qualify for nutrient content claims under regional regulatory frameworks. The data demonstrate that 100 g or 125mL (0.5 metric cup) of cooked pulses is a reasonable target for aligning strategies that promote the dietary and nutritional attributes of these legumes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)990-1006
Number of pages17
JournalNutrition reviews
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2017

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Declaration of interest. C.M. and J.C. are employed by Pulse Canada. C.M. was previously employed by Kellogg Canada. J.S. has received research funding from the American Pulse Association and is on the editorial board of Dry Bean Quarterly. L.T. has received research funding from the Australian Grains and Legumes Research Council. The Pathfinders Research and Management Ltd (C.A.P.) has undertaken research for Pulse Canada.

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2017 Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the International Life Sciences Institute.


  • Beans
  • Chickpeas
  • Lentils
  • Nutrient recommendation
  • Nutrition
  • Peas
  • Pulses
  • Regulatory


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