Why you should add chickpeas into your diet.
Despite their humble appearance, chickpeas are a nugget of gold from a nutritional point of view. Some of the fantastic health benefits of Chickpeas include prevention of chronic disease, improve the function of the digestive system, protect the heart, promote growth and aid in weight loss, This is just to name a few.
Chick peas are a legume, they have a very impressive nutrient make up, containing Protein, fibre, Magnesium, folate they contain numerous essential vitamins and they an antioxidant. This has made them an integral crop in certain areas of the world, for thousands of years. They can be found in cuisine from the middle east and Mediterranean through to Burma and the Philippines. They can be found in Salads, soups and side dishes such as the legendary and tasty humus.
Chickpeas contain a high density of nutrients, combine this with their dietary fibre and this makes them wonderful for people looking to lose weight. Fibre helps the body feel fuller for longer and the nutrients and minerals provide energy, preventing fatigue and unnecessary snacking.
One of the most important elements of the chickpea is the high protein content, this makes them a brilliant alternative to meat. Protein is essential for development, growth and repair within our body.
Digestion is the starting block of health in the human body, so making sure that your gastrointestinal system is functioning properly is crucial. The dietary fibre contained within chickpeas will help maintain regular bowel movements, while preventing inflammation, bloating and constipation. This can help with the absorption of minerals from your food.
Chickpeas contain a number of antioxidant compounds including, Polyphenols, Phytonutrients, beta-carotene and important vitamins, which can reduce the risk of chronic disease within the body. Antioxidants seek out and attack free radicals, the unwanted and dangerous byproduct of cellular metabolism. Antioxidants can help safe guard the body from Cancer, CHD (coronary heart disease) macular degeneration and cognitive disorders such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.
Maintaining stable and balanced blood sugar levels is important for any individual, not just those who suffer from diabetes. Chickpeas are proven to regulate blood sugar levels and insure the body maintains a regular level of insulin and blood sugar. Chickpeas can aid in the prevention of diabetes and help keep it under control for those who have it.
Heart health & maintenance
The cardiovascular system gets a boost in two separate ways from chickpeas. The high level of soluble fibre, help reduce cholesterol, thus reducing the risk of clogged arteries, that can lead to heart attack, strokes and death. Omega 3 fatty acids are present in chickpeas, theses are useful polyunsaturated fats that our bodies require.
The concentrated minerals found in chickpeas, including phosphorus, magnesium, copper and zinc mean they are exceptionally beneficial to bone health and density. They can aid in the prevention of age related conditions such as osteoporosis.
So there we have it, next time you go shopping add these to your list. They taste wonderful with couscous, in a curry or as a refreshing side dip of humus.
If you would like any nutritional advice feel free to contact me.