Chickpeas are delicious, nutritious, and versatile. They’re also loaded with fiber, protein, iron, zinc, magnesium, folate, potassium, vitamin B6, and vitamin C.
They are great for weight loss because they help reduce cholesterol levels, boost metabolism, and increase energy. In addition, chickpeas contain high amounts of antioxidants, making them a powerful weapon against free radicals.
Chickpeas are also packed with fiber, protein, and nutrients. They’re also gluten-free, vegan, and low in calories.
In this article, I’m going to share with you the 13 health benefits of chickpeas.
1. Chickpeas are Good Sources of Protein
Chickpeas are rich in protein, which makes them a good choice for vegetarians who want to get enough protein.
A cup of cooked chickpeas contains about 6 grams of protein. This amount provides more than half your daily requirement of protein.
Protein helps build muscle tissue and maintain healthy bones and skin. It can also be used by the body to produce hormones that regulate growth and development.
Protein is essential for building muscles, repairing tissues, and maintaining bone density. When you eat foods containing adequate amounts of protein, you’ll feel fuller longer, helping you lose weight.
2. Chickpeas Contain Antioxidants That Fight Disease
A new study shows that chickpeas are a great source of antioxidants. They contain more antioxidant activity than other popular beans, such as black-eyed peas and pinto beans. The researchers also found that the antioxidant levels in chickpeas were higher when they were cooked rather than raw.
This is good news for people who want to eat healthy foods. It’s also important because it means that we don’t have to worry so much about cooking our food. We just need to make sure we cook it properly.
Antioxidant compounds protect cells from damage caused by harmful substances like free radicals. Free radicals cause cell damage and contribute to many chronic diseases, including cancer.
The antioxidants in chickpeas may play an important role in preventing heart disease. Studies show that eating foods rich in antioxidants reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease.
The antioxidants in chickpeas could also help prevent diabetes. A recent study showed that people who ate legumes regularly had lower blood sugar levels than those who didn’t.
3. Chickpeas Lower Cholesterol
The health benefits of chickpeas are well-known. They’re a great source of fiber, protein, and iron, which is why they’ve been used as a staple food for centuries in many cultures around the world.
But did you know that these little legumes also have an impressive cholesterol-lowering effect?
In fact, according to a study published in the Journal of Nutrition, a single serving of chickpeas has almost as much cholesterol-fighting power as 2 slices of whole-grain bread!
Researchers at the University of California conducted a study on mice. They fed some of the animals a diet rich in saturated fats and others a diet rich in unsaturated fats. After 12 weeks, the mice that ate the unsaturated fat diet had significantly less cholesterol in their bloodstream than the ones that ate the saturated fat diet.
This finding suggests that eating chickpeas or any other bean will reduce your chances of developing high blood pressure and having a heart attack.
4. Chickpeas May Be Good For Diabetics
According to research published in Diabetes Care, people with type 2 diabetes who ate one cup of cooked chickpeas daily for six months experienced significant improvements in their fasting glucose levels.
In addition, the researchers found that the participants’ insulin sensitivity improved, meaning that their bodies became better able to use insulin effectively.
Insulin resistance occurs when the body becomes resistant to insulin’s ability to regulate blood sugar levels. When this happens, the pancreas produces larger amounts of insulin to compensate.
As a result, the insulin ends up circulating in the blood instead of being absorbed into the cells where it belongs.
In another study published in the journal Metabolism, researchers gave healthy adults either a high-carbohydrate meal or a low-carbohydrate meal.
The subjects were then asked to fast overnight before undergoing a series of tests designed to measure how efficiently they metabolized carbohydrates.
Those who ate the low-carbohydrate meal performed better on all of the tests than those who ate the high-carbohydrate meal. This means that even if you don’t eat carbs, you still benefit from eating foods like chickpeas.
5. Chickpeas Can Reduce Blood Pressure
According to research presented at the American Society of Hypertension meeting in 2010, people with hypertension who ate more beans experienced significant reductions in their blood pressure.
A team led by Dr. Charles Criqui at New York University studied the effects of dietary changes on blood pressure among men and women between the ages of 20 and 60.
They randomly assigned half of the participants to follow a diet rich in beans (including lentils, kidney beans, black beans, garbanzo beans, pinto beans, etc.) while the rest followed a typical Western diet.
After eight weeks, the group that ate the bean-rich diet lowered its systolic blood pressure by an average of 5 points and diastolic blood pressure by 4 points.
These results suggest that eating chickpeas can help lower blood pressure.
6. Chickpeas Cut Cravings and promote weight loss
In addition, studies have shown that eating chickpeas may be helpful for reducing cravings and promoting weight loss.
One such study was published in the International Journal of Obesity. Researchers divided obese people into two groups: one group ate about 1/2 cup of cooked chickpeas daily; the second group didn’t eat them.
At the end of the six-week period, both groups lost similar amounts of weight. However, the group that ate chickpeas reported feeling hungrier than the group that didn’t eat them. The researchers concluded that “eating chickpeas may help curb appetite.”
Another study published in the British Journal of Nutrition showed that overweight people who consumed a diet rich in legumes lost more weight than those who didn’t consume these foods.
In fact, after following the legume-rich diet for 12 weeks, the study participants had lost nearly 2 pounds more than the control group.
This suggests that adding chickpeas to your diet could help you lose weight.
7. Chickpeas Improve Digestion
Digestive problems are common in older people. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, approximately 30 percent of Americans over age 65 suffer from some form of digestive disorder.
While many factors contribute to poor digestion, a lack of fiber is often to blame. Fiber helps food pass through the intestines without causing any discomfort.
Studies show that people who eat more whole grains tend to have healthier guts. One study found that people who ate more whole-grain bread and pasta had fewer gastrointestinal complaints than those who ate refined versions.
The same goes for legumes. A recent study conducted at the University of California Davis School of Medicine found that people who ate legumes were less likely to experience constipation or other digestive issues.
It’s thought that this is because legumes contain soluble fibers that bind water and create softer stools.
8. Chickpeas Prevent Osteoporosis
Osteoporosis is a condition characterized by low bone density and an increased risk of fractures. It affects millions of people worldwide.
According to the World Health Organization, osteoporosis is the most common disease affecting bones. In the United States alone, it affects as many as 44 million adults.
A healthy lifestyle including regular exercise, adequate calcium intake, and avoiding alcohol and tobacco can prevent osteoporosis. But if you’re already suffering from the disease, there are ways to treat it.
A new study published in the journal Bone shows that consuming chickpeas can help protect against osteoporosis. Researchers gave female mice either a normal diet or a high-calcium diet along with either no chickpeas or chickpeas. After eight months, the mice on the high-calcium diets had stronger bones than those on the normal diet.
However, when the mice were given the high-chickpea diet, their bones became even stronger. This suggests that chickpeas may be able to increase bone strength.
9. Chickpeas Make Skin Glows
If you want to look younger, glowing skin is one way to do it. Unfortunately, many anti-aging products don’t work very well. They might make wrinkles disappear but they won’t give you a glowy complexion.
But eating chickpeas has been shown to improve skin health.
One study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that women who ate chickpeas experienced improvements in their skin tone and texture. The researchers believe that these benefits come from the antioxidants in chickpeas.
They also found that chickpeas helped reduce inflammation in the body. Inflammation causes redness and swelling, which makes skin appear unhealthy.
In addition, another study showed that people who ate chickpeas had lower levels of cholesterol in their blood. Cholesterol contributes to the buildup of plaque in arteries, which leads to heart problems.
So next time you’re craving something crunchy, consider adding some chickpeas to your plate. You’ll get all sorts of health benefits from them.
10. Chickpeas Boost Immunity
Eating chickpeas helps boost immunity. According to research published in the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition, people who regularly consume chickpeas have higher levels of antibodies that fight infection.
The researchers suggest that this could be due to the fact that chickpeas contain fiber, which feeds good bacteria in our intestines. These bacteria produce short-chain fatty acids that contribute to the immune system.
11. Chickpeas Help Prevent Heart Attacks
Heart attacks happen when a clot forms inside an artery. When this happens, part of the artery becomes blocked off. If the blockage isn’t removed quickly enough, the artery will rupture, causing severe bleeding.
Some studies show that people who eat legumes like lentils and beans have less chance of having a heart attack. One reason for this is that legumes are rich in soluble fiber. Soluble fiber binds to cholesterol and helps remove it from the bloodstream.
This means that legumes are associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular diseases such as atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and coronary heart disease.
12. Chickpeas are good for the eyes
According to research published in the British Medical Journal, people who eat more legumes have better vision. In other words, if you eat lots of chickpeas, you’ll probably see better!
Researchers think that the reason why legumes are linked to improved eyesight is that they contain iron. Iron plays a role in making sure that the optic nerve gets oxygen.
People who eat legumes tend to have higher amounts of iron in their bodies than those who don’t. This may explain why chickpea lovers have better vision.
13. Chickpeas support pregnancy
If you’re pregnant or thinking about becoming pregnant, you should definitely include chickpeas on your menu plan. Studies show that regular consumption of chickpeas during pregnancy can help prevent miscarriage.
A study published in the journal Human Reproduction looked at the diets of over 1,000 women who were trying to become pregnant. It found that women who ate legumes like chickpeas and lentils were much less likely to suffer miscarriages than women who didn’t eat these foods.
A similar study was conducted by the University of California, Davis, where researchers studied the diets of nearly 2,500 pregnant women. The results showed that eating legumes during pregnancy reduces the chances of miscarriage by 30 percent.
1. Chickpea Curry – This curry recipe has been around since ancient times. It’s a great vegetarian dish.
2. Spicy Chickpeas & Rice – This spicy rice dish is perfect for vegetarians and meat-eaters alike.
3. Chickpeas with Spinach & Feta Cheese – This healthy salad is packed full of protein.
4. Instant Pot Chickpeas – These chickpeas cook up fast in a recipe that combines two favorite dishes into one. You get all the taste of spicy Indian food without any of the fat.
5. Chickpea Flour Pancakes – These pancakes are perfect for breakfast or lunch. They also make a great snack.
6. Chickpea Salad Sandwich – A healthy sandwich made out of chickpeas.
7. Chickpea Soup – This soup is just for 5 minutes. They’re also gluten-free.
How to cook chickpeas
Cooking chickpeas is very simple. All you need is a pot filled with water and some salt. Bring the water to boil, then add the chickpeas. Let them simmer until tender.
You can either use dried chickpeas or canned chickpeas. If you buy dried chickpeas, soak them overnight before cooking. Canned chickpeas do not require soaking.
To prepare chickpeas for salads, simply rinse them under cold running water. To remove skins from cooked chickpeas, place them
in a strainer and run cold water through the strainer.
How To Select And Store Chickpeas (Garbanzo Beans)
Selecting fresh chickpeas is pretty straightforward. Look for firm beans that feel heavy for their size. Avoid soft ones as they will be difficult to cook.
Store chickpeas in a cool dry place for up to 10 days. Refrigeration isn’t necessary but will extend their shelf life.
Chickpeas are available year-round. However, they peak seasonally in spring and summer.
Why should I soak chickpeas?
Soaking chickpeas helps soften their texture so they cook more evenly. Soak your chickpeas overnight if you want to use them in soups, stews, and other dishes.
If you plan on making falafel, you don’t have to soak chickpeas. But if you want to make hummus, you’ll need to soak them first.
In conclusion, chickpeas are a superfood that everyone should eat regularly. They’re packed full of fiber, protein, iron, folate, potassium, magnesium, zinc, vitamin B6, and vitamin C. And did I mention they taste delicious?! Chickpeas are also gluten-free, which makes them perfect for anyone following a gluten-free diet. Try adding them to salads, soups, stews, dips, sandwiches, pasta dishes, and even desserts. They’re versatile enough to fit into any meal plan.