Shortly after arriving home from work, my husband called me to the bedroom where I found him sitting in his recliner, eyes wide and glued to the television.
“Boo, you’ve got to see this,” he told me as he pressed the DVR button and paused an image of Dr. Oz on the television.
I turned toward the set, thinking perhaps this episode had something to do with the Saints or maybe nerve sciatica and back pain, which has forced my husband to miss a few weeks from his job.
It was neither.
If I may, drum roll please … it turned out to be a show featuring beans — red kidney beans.
His own pot of seasoned red beans was simmering on the stove. My husband told me there was a little bit of magic in that pot. Kidney beans, according to Oz, are some of the highest-fiber and best cholesterol-lowering foods available, even surpassing fruits, breads and nuts.
That type of fiber can reduce cancers and other diseases. My husband is approaching 50 this year, and he’s becoming a lot more careful about his diet.
“Looks like we’ll be cooking more beans,” he told me.
For the past three weeks, he has cooked a lot of beans, and he has assumed a few other domestic duties, although making up beds has not been one.
While he might normally prefer to grill outdoors, start a football debate with his brothers, munch on Buffalo wings and stretch out in his easy chair, he’s now speaking a language that most moms know all too well.
One afternoon, he told me about some of his comparison shopping trips between Costco and Wal-Mart.
“Can you believe the price on this 30-roll pack of toilet paper?” he asked me. “Sure beats buying those smaller packs.”
My eyes grew large. We must have talked another 10 minutes or so about comparison shopping for toothpaste and paper towels and meat sales.
“I found these chops for $5 a pack,” he boasted.
I gasped, calling to mind the 1980s movie “Mr. Mom” starring Michael Keaton, who portrayed a man laid off from his job who becomes a stay-at-home dad while his wife works.
Though my husband will be returning to work soon, he has become my children’s favorite “go to” person lately.
“Daddy, what’s for dinner?”
During one particular week, he cooked greens, smothered pork chops and white northern beans.
Not to be outdone, a day or two later I cooked marinated chicken, speckled butter beans and collard greens.
Still, his creamy red beans are the favorite in my household.
In the end, my husband has not only helped stir up a pot of delicious meals and earned the title “Mr. Mom,” he has also filled his cooking pot with some of nature’s best disease-prevention weapons.
Chante Dionne Warren is a freelance writer. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.