Chickpeas -- also known as garbanzo beans -- are one of the most popular and most consumed crops in the world, and they are part of the diet of some of the healthiest populations on the planet. Chickpeas are part of traditional cuisines in the Middle East, the Mediterranean, and some African nations. Except for the soybean, it is the most widely grown and eaten bean on Earth.

The superfood known as chickpeas are a legume that offers a range of health benefits, from increasing satiety, helping with weight loss and boosting digestion to keeping blood sugar levels stable and increasing protection against disease. They are a package of protein, vitamins, and minerals, which explains why they are a part of numerous healing diets.

Just one cup of chickpeas contains over 12 grams of dietary fiber, 14 grams of protein, and a high percentage of the daily recommended value of copper, iron, zinc, manganese, and folate, according to the USDA. Additionally, including them in your diet may help you reduce your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.

Disease Protection and Prevention

Because of the high fiber content in chickpeas, people with Type 1 diabetes can benefit from eating the legume because it contributes to lower blood glucose levels, according to the book ReSYNC Your Life by Samir Becic. For those with Type 2, the high fiber can help improve blood sugar, lipid, and insulin levels.

The iron, manganese, zinc, and calcium all contribute to bone strength, while the low sodium levels help with keeping blood pressure low.

The high fiber, potassium, and B-6 also support heart health and lowers the amount of cholesterol in the blood, which reduces the risk of heart disease.

The mineral selenium is not present in most fruits and vegetables, but it is in chickpeas, and it helps the enzymes of the liver to function properly and detoxify some of the body's cancer-causing compounds. The folate in chickpeas helps with DNA synthesis and repair, and that means it helps prevent the formation of cancer cells from DNA mutations.

High fiber from chickpeas, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables also help reduce the risk of stomach and colorectal cancer.

chickpeas in wooden bowl

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Weight Management and Weight Loss

In the digestive system, dietary fibers are "bulking agents" which increase satiety (the feeling of being full) and reduce appetite, which helps you feel fuller for a longer period and helps you to consume fewer calories. Many studies have suggested that consuming plant food like chickpeas decreases the risk of obesity, increases energy, and promotes overall lower weight.

When you frequently consume foods like the fat-burning garbanzo bean, it can help you with substantial weight loss that is healthy because it makes you full, which means you are less likely to snack on empty-calorie and processed junk food between meals, claims the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

And, when you pair chickpeas with other nutritious foods like vegetables, it is an excellent option for people looking to slim down because of the low number of calories but high content of fiber and protein, which is the perfect combination for losing pounds.

Skin Protection

Chickpeas are common in warm and sunny climates, and that is good for people who eat them because they act as a natural sunblock thanks to the manganese. Just one cup contains eighty-five percent of the daily value of the mineral that functions as an antioxidant in skin cells claims Becic, in his book ReSYNC Your Life. It also protects against UV light damage and decreases rashes.

The manganese also helps keep the formation of wrinkles and fine lines at bay because it reverses the damaging effects of free radicals. The legume also contains the element molybdenum which eliminates sulfites and has a detox effect on the skin.

The other vital nutrients in chickpeas like folate and zinc also contribute to keeping the skin supple and glowing.

Immune Booster

When you feel a cold coming on, conventional wisdom says to load up on the Vitamin C. However; researchers are skeptical about its efficacy of fighting the common cold, so, instead, they are big fans of zinc. It is zinc that prohibits the replication of rhinoviruses, which are the bugs responsible for a cold. Since chickpeas have twenty-three percent of your daily zinc, plus sixty-four percent of your daily copper, it makes the legume an incredible immune booster.

Digestive Health

Again, it's the fiber content in chickpeas that are a benefit, and when it comes to digestive health, they can help bulk up your stool content and keep your bowels moving regularly while also eliminating inflammation, cramping, bloating, and constipation.

This also helps with improving nutrition digestion and ensuring that you are making the most of your food's nutritional value. Fiber keeps your digestive system working, which is why doctors suggest that forty percent of your diet should come from fiber-rich foods, like chickpeas.

sweet potato and chickpeas dish on gray background

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Heart Health

Garbanzo beans boost your cardiovascular health in two different ways. First, the high levels of soluble fiber help to scrap cholesterol and rebalance the levels in your heart, and that prevents atherosclerosis, heart attacks, and strokes.

A study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal revealed that people could reduce the amounts of LDL, or bad cholesterol, by eating one serving of legumes per day. And, since the only fat in chickpeas is Omega-3 fatty acids, they can help protect the heart and reduce inflammation throughout the entire body.

Chickpeas also contain choline, which helps with sleep, muscle movement, learning, and memory. It also helps to maintain the structure of cellular membranes, assists in the absorption of fat, aids in the transmission of nerve impulses, and reduced chronic inflammation.**

Muscle Builder

Proteins are made from 20 different amino acids, and the high protein content in chickpeas provide those amino acids that are the building blocks in muscle that allow for contraction. When your muscle contracts, it grows. And, with one cup of chickpeas providing one-third of your daily protein needs, combining them with the protein in nuts, veggies, and fish will help you get strong.

chickpeas dish with greens in blue bowl

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Genetic Defect Prevention

Doctors often associate folate with the benefits it can have for women because they associate low folate levels with neural tube defects and other complications with childbirth. So, adding folate-rich chickpeas to your diet, especially during pregnancy, is a great option for ensuring your baby's healthy delivery.

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