Chickpea, (Cicer arietinum), also called garbanzo bean or Bengal gram, annual plant of the pea family (Fabaceae), widely grown for its nutritious seeds. Chickpeas are an important food plant in India, Africa, and Central and South America. The seeds are high in fiber and protein and are a good source of iron, phosphorus, and folic acid.
Two main varieties of chickpeas exist; the light seeded Kabuli type common in the United States, and the smaller dark Desi type, often used in India and the Middle East.
Desi chana has small, darker seeds and a rough coat. They are grown mostly in India and other parts of the Indian subcontinent, as well as in Ethiopia, Mexico, and Iran.
Garbanzo beans or ‘kabuli’ chana are lighter-coloured and larger, mainly grown in the Mediterranean, Southern Europe, Northern Africa, South America, and the Indian subcontinent.
Health benefit of Chickpeas
An excellent source of carbohydrate, protein, fiber, B vitamins, and some minerals, they are a nutritious staple of many diets.
- Chickpeas help control blood sugar.
- They help with digestion.
- They can help lower cholesterol.
- Chickpeas may help with weight management.
- Improves Colon Health.