Chickpeas: Health Benefits, Side Effects , Nutritional Value & Recipes

This article will help you know about chickpeas. After reading you will know the health benefits of chickpeas and some side effects of it. 

Chickpeas are a good source of protein that helps in reducing the risk of diabetes & weight gain. It also helps in various other health risks. 

What exactly are Chickpeas ?

Chickpea or garbanzo bean is an edible seed. It is a legume based seed which has been eaten by modern and many ancient civilizations. It is a very good source of plant protein.  In multiple civilizations, the names of chickpeas have varied. In Egypt, it is called Egyptian pea, West Bengal calls it Bengal gram and many other names. 

The most popular health benefits of Chickpea are 

  1. Improves Digestion
  2. Prevent Heart disease
  3. Regulate Blood Pressure
  4. Lowers the risk of Chronic & genetic
  5. Nourishes the bone & skin health. 

Fun Facts About Chickpeas

  1. India is the world’s largest producer of chickpeas with an annual production of 8,832,500 metric tons.
  2. Chickpeas got its name as the shape of it resembles a beak of a chick. 
  3. It is the most common food in the world in the form of legumes.
  4. Stems of the plant are used for animal fodder 
  5. Blue dyes are manufactured by the leaves of the chickpea plant.

Varieties of Chickpeas

About 100 varieties of peas are found till now. Although most of them are classified in color i.e. pale-brown, black, green, and red.

Nutrition in Chickpeas

Chickpeas are packed with most nutrients needed for the body. As it is a plant based protein, it has fiber & carbs in it. There are multiple nutrients in it which are mentioned as. 

  1. Antioxidants
  2. Minerals like iron, zinc, magnesium, folate & phosphorus. 
  3. Rich in Vitamins i.e. Vitamin A, B6, B12, C & K

One cup of chickpeas has 269 calories & no cholesterol. Other figures can be seen below. 

Fat 4g 
Sodium 11 mg
Cholesterol 0
Dietary Fiber 12 g
Protein 14.5 g
Manganese1.7 mg
Folate282 mcg
Copper0.6 mg
Phosphorus276 mg
Iron4.7 mg
Magnesium78.7 mg
Zinc2.5 mg

Prevents Hormonal Imbalance

Chickpeas are a good cure for those who suffer from counter menopause & post menopause symptoms like night sweat, mood swings & hot flashes. 

The plant hormone (phytoestrogens) found in chickpeas helps in regulation of female hormone called estrogen.

Skin Care

Chickpeas are rich in manganese that helps in better skin health. It reduces the wrinkles and fine lines from the skin and keeps it young. Manganese helps in reducing the effects of free radicals in the body. 

Another benefit comes from molybdenum which provides a detox on the skin. Some other nutrients like folate & zinc repairs the UV damage & toxin overload to keep the skin glowing & shiny.  

Protects Vision

Chickpeas are rich in zinc and Vitamins like A, C & E. Regular consumption helps in maintaining good eyesight and lets it stay the same for years.  

Prevent Hair Loss

Chickpeas acts as a very good source of Vitamins A, B, C & E plus omega 6 fatty acids. All the mentioned nutrients help in boosting blood circulation and scalp health for better hair growth. 

Decreases Inflammation

Chronic inflammation can cause other problems slowly. Chickpeas can help in the same because of choline. Choline is a macronutrient which helps in better sleep cycle, muscle movement & boosts learning & memory.  

Regulates Blood Pressure

Blood pressure can be lowered in a simple way. If you decrease sodium in your diet, then your blood pressure will decrease itself. Chickpeas are low in sodium and help in lowering blood pressure. Other polysterols like beta sitosterol also helps in reducing the blood pressure.  

Prevent Diabetes

Chickpeas can help in reducing the blood sugar levels of the body with the help of soluble fiber and low glycemic index. 

Low glycemic index means the level where a consumed carbohydrate raises blood sugar levels.  Food with low glycemic levels lik chickpeas helps in reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes and heart problems. It is done by producing less blood sugar & insulin after food is eaten. 

People suffering from diabetes can be helped with chickpeas to manage their condition. A study has shown that food with chickpeas are better for lowering the blood glucose level.  

Weight Loss

Alone chickpeas don’t, but mixing chickpeas with dietary fiber rich food can help in losing weight. Actually weight control is done with two things i.e. taking food with high fiber & low glycemic load. 

Fiber based food helps in reducing the hunger 7 helps in feeling full & nutrients and minerals keeps the body healthy. 

Improve Digestion 

Chickpeas are high in fiber and help you in stool. The fiber present in chickpeas helps in digestion and helps in bowel movement. 

Foods that help in bowel movements reduce inflammation, cramping, constipation & bloating. Chickpeas also does these above mentioned functions plus improves the absorption levels of nutrients from the food.

Boost Heart Health

Chickpeas has fiber and it helps digestion, this is written above. But Fiber also helps in lowering the cholesterol levels of the body. Low cholesterol helps in reducing risks of various heart diseases like atherosclerosis and strokes. 

Bad cholesterol in the blood can be reduced with chickpeas. Chickpeas are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids that cure inflammation of the heart & improve serum lipid levels.

Strengthen Bones

Chickpeas are healthy food for bone health. Bones are made up of calcium, magnesium & zinc. This food provides all the above nutrients properly to the bones for better bone’s strength. Lack of calcium and zinc can cause bone related problems like osteoporosis Butyrate is a fatty acid which helps in reducing the colorectal cancers.  

Prevent Genetic Defects

During pregnancy, women need various nutrients. One of them is a Vitamin B Folate. Women who are deficient in Folate can be caused with neural tube defects during the birth of children. Eating chickpeas helps in healthy baby delivery.  

Side Effects of Chickpeas

There is a very small talk about side effects that are caused by eating it. Still here all of them will be discussed to spread full awareness about it

It has small quantities of purines which are made to uric acid and can be the reason for various other health conditions. This can cause kidney stones, stones will gallbladder. If you are already suffering from such problems, then avoid eating it. This could be a trigger to other serious problems

High fiber and starch can cause a little trouble in your digestion if you are eating it for the first time. It is suggested to eat it in less quantity in initial days and increase when your digestion adapts it.

How to Cook Chickpeas

Chickpeas can be easily found in the market in dry form & in cans. The canned chickpeas are added with salt and preservatives  

Here is a simple recipe to cook chickpeas

  1. First wash the chickpeas and remove the stones in it. 
  2. Soak them for 3-4 hours until it softens, this reduces the cooking time of chickpeas. 
  3. Another reason to soak them is to reduce the risk of gastric. 
  4. Now boil them and serve with little spicy topping 

How to Serve Chickpeas

  1. Chickpeas can be mashed and then mixed with olive oil, spices & lemon juices
  2. Add chickpea in salad or a soup to add taste in them.
  3. Some people grind dry chickpeas to make its flour and use it with wheat to enhance chapati taste with nutrition. 
  4. Barley flour & chickpea can be mixed equally to make flatbread for diabetic people. 

Final Words: Eating Chickpeas has many benefits as you have read. But before taking them as medicine, you must consult your doctor first and then you will be able to get benefits without any side effects on your health.

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