Chickpea - Healthy Facts About Chickpeas

Although the most common types of chickpeas are round and beige, some garbanzo beans include other colors such as green, black and red. Just like most of the legumes, chickpeas are rich in fiber content and prized for their high protein. This food may play an important role in decreasing the risk of several chronic illnesses such as cancer, diabetes and heart disease. Apart from being consumed, chickpea is used in textile industry.

There are 43 types and numerous varieties of garbanzo which are mainly grown in India, Turkey, Southern Europe, Mexico, Afghanistan, Iran, etc. Two main types of these delicious beans are named kabuli and desi. Kabuli are the large ones with a thinner, smoother skin and of beige color, while desi are smaller and darker beans that have a yellow interior. They have more of a rough coat.


Although chickpeas are higher in calories than most vegetables, they are praised for a number of beneficial nutrients. One cup serving of the chickpeas contains 270 calories, 45 grams of carbohydrates, 4 grams of fat, 15 grams of protein and 13 grams of fiber. Additionally, it is also a rich source of various minerals including manganese, copper, magnesium, zinc, as well a few other B-vitamins, including thiamine and B-6.

People who consume more beans are expected to have lower cholesterol levels due to dietary fiber, which these beans are rich in (12.5 grams). Since chickpeas are cholesterol-free food, they can help people reduce their LDL cholesterol (“bad cholesterol”).

Chickpeas are low in sodium, containing only 11 milligrams in a one-cup serving. They can prevent high blood pressure and a risk of heart-related diseases. It is recommended to avoid canned chickpea products like bean soup and hummus that can be high in sodium. It is better to look up for the ones which are low-sodium instead.

Being high in iron, chickpeas can energize you immensely. It is especially beneficial for pregnant or menstruating women due to being an integral part of hemoglobin, that transport oxygen from lungs to other body parts. It also stimulates the formation of red blood cells and several hormones, as it is important for normal growth and cell function.

Mixing chickpea flour with turmeric helps clean and remove dead skin of your face. It enhances skin texture and keeps it moist. By evenly applying a paste on your face, which is made from these two ingredients, you can remove facial hair or, alternatively, use it as a facial scrub. Furthermore, chickpeas are good for making your hair stronger. Thanks to the sufficient amount of protein and manganese they reduce the chance of getting gray hair.

Another very significant property of these seeds is that eating them may offer protection against some types of cancer. Those potential anti-cancer effects reflected in the fact that when chickpea fiber is being fermented in your gut, a certain metabolite called butyrate is produced. It has been proved that this fatty acid suppresses proliferation and triggers self-destruction of cancerous cells.

Chickpeas are very versatile seeds to cook with. They can be eaten dried, roasted, hot or cold and, conveniently enough, they are rather inexpensive. It is possible to make a variety of delicious dishes containing all sorts of garbanzo, such as meet-free soups, patties, salads, vegetable stews and a myriad of others. Chickpeas are great when combined with olive oil and lemon for preparing filling salads, or when used as a chickpea mash for substituting mayonnaise in fast food dishes. The choices to incorporate these healthy seeds is virtually endless.

Chickpea Hummus

If you decide to cook chickpeas, you should be familiar with the presoaking process, of which are two. The first method is to boil the beans for about 2-3 minutes, then remove the pan from the heat, and cover and let it there for 2 hours. The second method is just to soak beans in water for a predetermined time.

As of cooking chickpeas, there are two common ways of doing so. The first is to cook them on the stovetop and the second one is to use a pressure cooker. Since cooking chickpeas relatively time-consuming, you may always use some canned beans for making dishes. In case the beans are packaged with salt or other additives, you can just rinse them after opening the can to get rid of the unnecessary additions. Speaking of preparing hot dishes, chickpea beans need to be heated for a short time. On the other hand, they can be used as they are for making cold dishes, like hummus or salads.

Chickpea Hummus
Chickpea Falafel