Peas are a wonderful spring vegetable. Moreover, they are extremely healthy and nutritious. Here are some of their health benefits:
Low calorie content
The calorie content of peas is fairly low, with only 62 calories per 1/2-cup. About 70% of those calories come from carbs and the rest are provided by protein and a small amount of fat.
High protein content
Peas have a high protein content. For example, a 1/2 cup of cooked carrots has only 1 gram of protein, while 1/2 cup of peas contains four times that amount. This high amount of protein along with a high amount of fiber is a major reason why they are so filling. The unique protein content of green peas makes them an excellent food choice for those who do not eat animal products.
May help support the blood sugar levels
Peas have a relatively low glycemic index (GI), which is a measure of how quickly your blood sugar rises after eating a food. Diets that contain a lot of low-GI foods have been shown to be helpful for regulating blood sugar levels. What's more, green peas are rich in fiber and protein, which may be beneficial for controlling blood sugar.
May benefit digestion.
Green peas contain an impressive amount of fiber, which has been shown to provide many benefits for digestive health. First of all, fiber feeds the good bacteria in your intestines, which keeps them healthy and prevents unhealthy bacteria from overpopulating.
Peas may be protective against some chronic diseases
- Green peas contain a decent amount of heart-healthy minerals, such as magnesium, potassium and calcium. Diets high in these nutrients may be helpful for preventing high blood pressure, which is a major risk factor for heart disease.
- The high fiber content of green peas and legumes has been shown to lower total cholesterol and "bad" LDL cholesterol, both of which increase the risk of heart disease when they are elevated.
- Eating green peas regularly may reduce the risk of cancer, mostly due to peas' antioxidant content and their ability to reduce inflammation in the body. Furthermore, they are rich in several nutrients known for their ability to lower the risk of cancer, including vitamin K, which may be especially helpful for reducing the risk of prostate cancer.
- Peas have a few characteristics that are known to aid blood sugar control, which is an important factor in preventing and controlling diabetes. Their fiber and protein prevent your blood sugar levels from rising too quickly, which helps keep diabetes under control. Furthermore, the low glycemic index (GI) rank of green peas makes them a diabetic-friendly food. They also provide a decent amount of magnesium and B vitamins, in addition to vitamins K, A and C. All these nutrients have been found to help reduce the risk of diabetes.