Lentils are grown as a human food primarily in the Indian subcontinent. Although sometimes called ‘the poor man's meat’, they are an important source of protein. Research is needed to improve their nutritional value. Lentils are well placed to make a return into western diets; they are a good source of cheap protein, fibre and vitamins. They also contain low levels of fat, cholesterol and sodium. ... [Show full abstract] All of these positive features would improve a typical western diet.