From chronic diseases to digestive problems, chickpeas are able to help us with many health complications.
These small grains are full of impressive nutrients, which has made them one of the most important crops in some regions of the world. Although they are widely used in gastronomy in many places, few people are aware of their positive consequences for health.
Beyond the various options for cooking them, here we tell you about the benefits of chickpeas.
Health benefits of chickpeas
1. Excellent source of protein
Their high protein content make them ideal for vegetarians who want to make sure they have the necessary nutrients for their bodies from a vegetable source. However, chickpea proteins are not 'complete'. This means that it should not be the only source of protein you choose.
They also contribute, on the other hand, to the proper healing of wounds.
2. Combat chronic diseases
Another benefit are their antioxidant content:
- Vitamins (A, B-complex, C, D, E and K)
These antioxidants will help protect your body against: Cancer, heart disease, macular degeneration, cognitive disorders such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease.
3. Decrease digestive problems
Thanks to their high levels of fiber, eating chickpeas allows you to maintain regular bowel movements, reduce inflammation, eliminate cramps, reduce abdominal distension and constipation. In addition, they help your body absorb all the nutrients in food.
4. Control your diabetes
The ability to regulate blood sugar is one of the most outstanding benefits of chickpeas. If you don't have diabetes, chickpeas control insulin levels in the blood. This is particularly good if you have recently been diagnosed with metabolic syndrome or pre-diabetes. However, if you already have diabetes, chickpeas allow you to keep it under control.
5. Weight loss
Thanks to the high density of nutrients in chickpeas, combined with their dietary fiber content and low calorie intake, they can help you lose weight. Fiber helps your body feel fuller for longer. On the other hand, the mixture of nutrients and minerals keeps your body energetic, active and prevents fatigue.
6. Strong bones
Minerals concentrated in chickpeas such as iron, phosphorus, magnesium, copper and zinc are great allies for your bone health. Many of these minerals are essential when it comes to improving the density of your bones and preventing diseases such as osteoporosis.
7. Genetic defects
Folic acid is an important B-complex vitamin. Low levels of folic acid are closely related to neural tube defects and other complications with the birth of babies. Therefore, adding chickpeas to your diet, especially during pregnancy, is a great way to ensure that your baby is very healthy.
8. Protect your heart health
Firstly, its high levels of soluble fibre allow the elimination of cholesterol and provide a better balance. This helps you in the prevention of arteriosclerosis, heart attacks and strokes.
On the other hand, the only fats in chickpeas are omega-3 fatty acids. These are beneficial polyunsaturated fats that the body needs to protect the heart and help reduce any inflammation that may occur.
Although the benefits of chickpeas are wonderful, they also provide us with compounds called purines. The body usually breaks down these purines into uric acid. For this reason, if you have medical problems such as kidney stones, gallstones or gout, it is best to avoid chickpeas.