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7 Health Benefits & Nutritional Information Of Chickpeas

Check the health benefits of chickpeas below and know why you should include them in your diet.

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Chickpeas are also known as garbanzo beans. They are a member of the pulse family. Pulses, including beans, lentils, and dry peas, are the dried edible seeds of legume plants. Chickpea nutrition includes high fiber, protein, and healthy fat contents. It is one of the most widely consumed pulses in the world. Chickpea plants grow to about two feet tall, with small, feathery leaves and white or reddish blue flowers. One pod contains one to three small peas.

Possible benefits of chickpeas include helping control blood sugar, manage weight, and support heart and gut health. Chickpeas are naturally gluten-free and not a common allergen, hence do not carry many risks. Adding high-fiber chickpeas to your diet is key to avoiding bloating and other gastrointestinal upset. Know more benefits of chickpeas in detail below.

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1. Regulate Blood Sugar Levels- The glycemic index of chickpeas is 28, which is on the lower end and hence it doesn’t spike your blood sugar levels. Consuming chickpeas lowers the risk of diabetes. Consuming chickpeas in place of wheat also leads to lower postprandial blood glucose levels. Chickpeas are rich in fiber that slows down the absorption of blood sugar, thereby cutting the risk of type 2 diabetes. This fiber also controls your appetite and further helps you stay away from high GI foods that you might otherwise mindlessly snack on.

2. Helps Lose Weight- The fiber content in chickpeas helps to make you feel full for long periods which further helps you stay away from junk and other useless stuff. Chickpeas also help cut body fat – contributing to weight loss. Chickpeas are nutrient-dense as well. So if you need to avoid certain foods to reach your weight loss goals, chickpeas can make sure you don’t fall behind when it comes to optimum nutrition.

3. Boosts Digestive Health- The fiber in the chickpeas helps prevent constipation and promotes regularity. The fiber also acts as a bulking agent in the digestive system, thereby improving the overall digestive health. In addition, the fiber also helps balance the pH levels and the healthy gut bacteria and also reduces the number of unhealthy bacteria in the gut.

4. Improves Heart Health- Chickpeas contain potassium, fiber, and vitamins C and B6 – all of which support heart health. The fiber helps lower the total cholesterol in the blood and reduces the risk of heart disease. It also removes plaque from the arteries thus improving their health and further benefiting the heart. The soluble fiber in chickpeas helps prevent cardiovascular disease. The potassium in chickpeas cuts the risk of heart attacks. The folate in chickpeas also contributes to heart health. It counteracts homocysteine, an amino acid that helps in the formation of blood clots and hence proves to be beneficial for the heart.

5. Helps Prevent Cancer- Chickpeas contain a high content of selenium that helps the liver function properly and enables it to detoxify certain cancer-causing compounds in the body. Selenium in chickpeas also suppresses inflammation and prevents tumor growth. The folate in chickpeas plays an important role in DNA synthesis and repair. This is why it prevents the formation of cancer cells from mutations in the DNA. Chickpeas also contain phytochemicals called saponins, which prevent the multiplication and proliferation of cancer cells. The fiber contained in chickpeas also helps in lowering the risk of colorectal cancer as well. The vitamin C works as an antioxidant that fights free radicals and prevents cancer altogether.

6. Helps Prevent Wrinkles- Chickpeas contain manganese, which offers energy to cells and is known to fight free radicals that cause wrinkles. The B vitamins in chickpeas work as fuel for the cells. Chickpeas are also used to cleanse your face. Simply mix chickpea paste with turmeric and apply the mixture to your face in the morning. Leave it on for 15 minutes and then wash off with cold water. This remedy helps reduce age spots and brighten your face.

7. Prevents Hair Loss- Chickpeas are rich in protein, and hence help prevent hair loss. Chickpeas contain manganese that helps strengthen your hair. A deficiency in manganese leads to slower hair growth. The vitamin A and zinc in chickpeas also fight dandruff. The zinc in chickpeas also helps prevent hair thinning. The copper in chickpeas helps regrow hair (in individuals who lost hair due to medical treatments like chemotherapy).

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