Update: Cooking Reduces Allergens

A study came out today discussing the fact that cooking can reduce the allergens in legumes. I added this to the list of benefits of cooking in Raw Food Vegan Diets.

No biggie, but thought some people might be interested.


Verma AK, Kumar S, Das M, Dwivedi PD. Impact of Thermal Processing on Legume
Allergens. Plant Foods Hum Nutr. 2012 Dec 7. (Abstract)   |   link

4 Responses to “ Update: Cooking Reduces Allergens”

  1. Cobie deLespinasse Says:

    There are people eating raw legumes? Back in the 90s, my friend’s boss told me he had thought he’d save some time, so he just soaked his legumes instead of cooking them. He said this worked out really badly health-wise, because raw legumes contain something (I think he called it “proctease inhibitor”) that keeps people from absorbing protein. I think he actually was losing muscle mass, and he went back to cooking his legumes and was ok. I’d be curious to know what was going on there, but no need to look for an answer on my account if you don’t happen to know. I don’t plan to eat raw legumes.

  2. Jack Norris RD Says:


    Yes, this post probably doesn’t have a lot of practical relevance. Many raw foodists do eat sprouted, raw legumes and some soak peanuts (a legume) and eat them raw. And I would assume this phenomena doesn’t only apply to legumes – I can’t see any reason why it would. Finally, cooking longer and at higher temperatures would probably maximize the effects of reducing allergens.

    That said, I wouldn’t encourage anyone to run out, buy some foods they are allergic to, and cook them for a bit longer and try to see if they can then tolerate them.

    I added it to the article as just another thing that cooking can provide, though perhaps it is a very minor benefit.

  3. Cobie deLespinasse Says:

    There must be some raw-foodists reading your blog, and I would think posts like this might help them. Thank you for your nutrition info!

  4. Jack Norris RD Says:

    Well, apparently this is not true of peanuts. From a food preparation review:

    “Roasted peanuts appear to be more allergenic than raw peanuts, which is attributed to increased levels of protein-bound allergens produced in the roasting process.”

    Mensah P, Tomkins A. Household-level technologies to improve the availability and preparation of adequate and safe complementary foods. Food Nutr Bull. 2003 Mar;24(1):104-25. | link

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