Garbanzo beans, sometimes referred to as chickpeas, have been grown and consumed in Middle Eastern nations for thousands of years. They go well with a variety of other dishes and components because to their nutty flavor and gritty texture.

Chickpeas, which are a nutrient-dense source of vitamins, minerals, and fiber, may help with weight control, improve digestion, and lower your risk of disease.

Additionally, this bean is a good meat substitute in many vegetarian and vegan meals due to its high protein content.

Nutritional Profile

Chickpeas have a remarkable nutritional makeup.

They have a moderate amount of calories (269 per cup) (164 grams). These calories are made up of carbs to an extent of 67%, followed by protein and fat.

Chickpeas also provide a variety of vitamins and minerals, as well as a decent amount of fiber and protein. A 1-cup (164-gram) serving of cooked chickpeas offers:

  • Calories: 269

  • Protein: 14.5 grams

  • Fat: 4 grams

  • Carbs: 45 grams

  • Fiber: 12.5 grams

  • Manganese: 74% of the Daily Value (DV)

  • Folate (vitamin B9): 71% of the DV

  • Copper: 64% of the DV

  • Iron: 26% of the DV

  • Zinc: 23% of the DV

  • Phosphorus: 22% of the DV

  • Magnesium: 19% of the DV

  • Thiamine: 16% of the DV

  • Vitamin B6: 13% of the DV

  • Selenium: 11% of the DV

  • Potassium: 10% of the DV

As you can see, this legume is a particularly good source of the mineral manganese and the B vitamin folate.


Why are chickpeas so healthy?

All nine of the essential amino acids, which are the structural components that support healthy bodily function, are present in chickpeas, making them what is referred to as a complete protein. In addition, Lane notes that chickpeas are a great source of vegetarian protein. They are excellent for vegans and vegetarians.

Additionally, chickpeas are a veritable treasure trove of vitamins and minerals. These include iron, folate, magnesium, potassium, and choline, which support the health of your brain and neurological system. Additionally, chickpeas are a significant source of vitamins A, E, and C. They gain enormous health benefits as a result, according to Lane. These tiny little peas are incredibly nutritious.

The benefits of chickpeas

Because chickpeas are so full of nutrients, they provide multiple health benefits, including:

1. Rich in plant protein

Being a terrific source of plant-based protein, chickpeas are a fantastic diet for those who don’t consume meat or other animal products. About 14.5 grams of protein are included in a 1-cup (164-gram) meal, which is equivalent to the protein level of foods like lentils and black beans. The protein in chickpeas might aid in promoting fullness and controlling your appetite. The benefits of protein for maintaining a healthy weight, strong bones, and muscles are also well established.

According to several research, chickpeas provide higher-quality protein than other varieties of legumes. That’s because, with the exception of methionine, chickpeas contain all of the essential amino acids.

They are therefore an inadequate source of protein because of this. It’s crucial to combine chickpeas with a whole grain that includes methionine, such as quinoa, to ensure that your diet has all nine essential amino acids.

2. May help you manage your weight

Chickpeas’ ability to fill you up may help with weight management. As a result of your decreased hunger brought on by the protein and fiber in chickpeas, you might consume fewer calories when eating.

According to one study, people who regularly ate chickpeas had a 53% lower risk of having a body mass index (BMI) over 30 and were more likely to have a smaller waist circumference. Although BMI is still a widely used health indicator, its usefulness is constrained.

However, a different study discovered that people who consumed at least 1 serving of legumes per day, such as chickpeas, lost 25% more weight than people who did not. More human investigations are required, despite the fact that these results seem encouraging.


3. Aid in blood sugar regulation

Due to their low glycemic index, chickpeas are a food that won’t cause a surge in blood sugar levels. If someone has difficulties controlling their blood sugar, this is a fantastic snack to include, according to Lane. Or if someone has diabetes, they can be useful in managing blood sugar.


4. May support blood sugar regulation

Chickpeas are naturally devoid of cholesterol and have a very low salt content. Additionally, they contain a lot of polyunsaturated fats. Your chance of developing heart disease is decreased as a result of the control (and reduction) of your cholesterol levels, which is greatly helped by polyunsaturated fats.


5. May benefit digestion

The high fiber content of chickpeas has a number of advantages for digestive health. Most of the fiber in chickpeas is soluble, which means that it combines with water in your digestive track to create a gel-like material.

In your gut, soluble fiber may assist promote the growth of beneficial bacteria while inhibiting the growth of unfavorable bacteria. This may result in a lower chance of developing several digestive diseases, including colon cancer and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

One study found that chickpeas may enhance digestive health by increasing bowel movement frequency, easiness, and consistency.

6. May promote brain health

Chickpeas may promote mental and cognitive health due to their outstanding nutritional profile. This is in part due to the fact that they are an excellent source of choline, which is essential for proper brain function.

This vital nutrient is particularly necessary for the creation of a few neurotransmitters that serve as chemical messengers for the nerve cells in your body. Choline is essential for newborn development, but little is known about how it affects adult health. Magnesium, a vital mineral for nerve function, is also abundant in chickpeas.

Additionally, studies suggest that a number of minerals present in these legumes, such as magnesium, selenium, and zinc, may act as a defense against sadness and anxiety. However, further human research are required.


7.May help prevent iron deficiency

Chickpeas are a fantastic source of iron, providing about 26% of the daily value (DV) in 1 cup (164 grams). Red blood cell synthesis, as well as physical development, cognitive growth, muscle metabolism, and other elements of health, all depend on iron.

It’s possible that your body won’t be able to make healthy red blood cells if you don’t get enough of this essential vitamin. This could then result in iron deficiency, which is a condition marked by signs including weariness, weakness, and shortness of breath. As a result, those who may be at a greater risk of iron deficiency, such as vegans and vegetarians, should consider chickpeas.

Additionally, chickpeas contain vitamin C, which could improve your body’s absorption of iron.

Are chickpeas always healthy?

Lane does advise reading the ingredient label because prefabricated goods might include a lot of additives. She asserts that hummus will be healthier for our bodies if it is made from natural ingredients. If you can’t pronounce the ingredients, there’s probably a problem, I always say as a general rule of thumb.

Although hummus is easy to make because it mostly consists of chickpeas, olive oil, and tahini (a paste formed from sesame seeds), other varieties may also include additional ingredients, such chocolate, to add taste. According to Lane, this can add more additives and make it less healthy. It’s possible that you’ll think, “Oh, well, this is healthier than eating ice cream or ordering chocolate mousse for a party,” she says. “Which it might be, but we want to confirm that we’re reading the carb content and checking to see if the serving size contains any added sugar. 8 grams of the 10 grams of carbohydrates should not come from added sugar. You want to aim for less than half of added sugar per total gram of carb count.”

According to Lane, you should also consider the quantity of fat, particularly the amount of saturated and trans fat, in a particular cuisine made with chickpeas in addition to the number of carbohydrates and serving size. She says, “Make sure there’s either none of that in there, or very little of that.”


Is chickpea pasta or flour just as healthy as eating chickpeas?

As opposed to other foods, chickpeas are healthy regardless of how you eat them since the nutrients in the bean are always accessible, which means your body can benefit from them.

Chickpeas can be consumed “as natural as they come,” straight from the can or, if you only want to boil them, straight from the bag. “You can serve them cold on a salad. They can be blended into hummus. Their nutritious composition isn’t significantly affected by how you eat them.

The same adaptability applies to chickpea flour and pasta. Both options are healthier than traditional pasta made from white flour and are beneficial to your health in every way. For instance, Lane advises that someone who like spaghetti should switch to garbanzo bean pasta to help regulate their blood sugar. In order to satisfy a celiac patient’s choice for a gluten-free diet, someone utilizing chickpea flour in baking products might be doing so. They have a health benefit.

Chickpeas aren’t just a delicious component of chili and a necessary component of hummus.

With their abundance in vitamins, minerals, fiber, and protein, they are also incredibly healthful. These traits may help you manage your weight, regulate your blood sugar, and maintain good brain function while lowering your risk of developing chronic diseases like cancer and heart disease.

Try roasting chickpeas as a snack or include them in a salad to begin started with them.