Chickpea flour: useful properties and contraindications
One of the most popular and widespread legumes in Asian countries is chickpea. Therefore, it is not surprising that besan (flour that is made from chickpeas) is an incredibly popular product, which is used in every family.
- Composition and calories
- What is the usefulness of chickpea flour
- The benefits of chickpea flour for weight loss
- Chickpea flour in medicine
- Chickpea flour in cosmetology
- Harms and Contraindications
- How to store chickpea flour
- How to make chickpea flour at home
- What can be made of chickpea flour: recipes
- Interesting facts about chickpea flour
Composition and calories
According to general statistics, the volume of chickpea harvesting around the world is increasing every year, which means that the demand for it is regularly increasing. Due to its high yield and nutritional value, this crop has become the number one product in the largest and most populous countries such as India, China, Pakistan, Australia and other smaller nations. Remarkably, only Australia grows chickpeas for sale on the world market; in all other countries they are preferably used for domestic needs.
Any legume crop is first and foremost a valuable source of healthy plant protein, and chickpeas are no exception. That's why chickpea flour is especially popular among people who consciously switch to vegetable food and refuse animal products, i.e. vegetarians.
100 g of chickpea flour contains about 20 g of healthy vegetable protein, up to 5 g of fat and almost 60 g of complex carbohydrates, thanks to which the feeling of fullness can last up to 5-6 hours. Despite its rich composition and high caloric content (100 g contains about 350 kilocalories) flour is very useful for those who watch their figure and stick to certain diets. This is justified by the large number of useful substances and minerals in its composition, which make it a diet product.
The biological value of proteins contained in chickpea flour is not much inferior to proteins of animal origin, and therefore products made of it can easily replace meat dishes without harm to health and the body as a whole. In addition, chickpea flour contains essential amino acids such as lysine, methionine and tryptophan, as well as a lot of purine compounds, which are very useful for many vital systems of the human body.
As for the fats contained in chickpea flour, we would like to note that all of them are healthy because they consist exclusively of mono- and polyunsaturated fatty acids. Chickpea flour does not contain harmful cholesterol at all, as it is replaced by phytosterols, which also play an important role in the process of steroid hormone synthesis and are one of the components of the cell membrane.
The complex carbohydrates contained in chickpea flour consist of 17% fiber, which is insoluble in water, which means that it is quite capable of performing full absorptive functions in the intestines and stomach. Because in the process of interaction of this fiber with gastric juice, the mass swells quickly, the feeling of satiety after eating chickpea flour comes rather quickly and lasts for a long time. It is also worth noting that due to its composition, chickpea flour is able to remove cholesterol from the body, which lingers on the dietary fibers in the small intestine after eating fatty meat food or bile secretions.
Based on all of the above, we can safely say that chickpea flour has a unique and very useful composition, rich in various vitamins and minerals. In 100 g of this product contains:
- 0.026 mg retinol (vitamin A);
- 0.45 mg of thiamine (vitamin B1);
- 0.98 mg riboflavin (vitamin B2);
- 0.63 mg of pantothenic acid (vitamin B5);
- 0.51 mg pyridoxine (vitamin B6);
- 0.47 mg folic acid (vitamin B9);
- 1.81 mg of nicotinic acid (vitamin PP);
- 0.02 mg of phylloquinone (vitamin K);
- 0.82 mg of tocopherol (vitamin E);
- 840 mg potassium;
- 360 mg of phosphorus;
- 67 mg sodium;
- 191 mg calcium;
- 94 mg silicon;
- 196 mg sulfur;
- 142 mg magnesium;
- 48.7 mg chlorine;
- 3.1 mg iron;
- 0.61 mg copper;
- 2.27 mg manganese;
- 2.53 mg zinc;
- 0.05 mg molybdenum;
- 0.04 mg selenium;
- 0.02 mg of iodine.
It is due to the fact that most of the nutrients in chickpea flour are harmoniously balanced, it has a positive effect on the human body and enjoys special popularity.
What is the usefulness of chickpea flour
Despite the fact that preferably besan is used for culinary purposes, various dishes and all kinds of baked goods, both unleavened and muffins, are prepared from it. Thanks to its, without exaggeration, exceptional and unique useful qualities and rich composition, this product is also widely used for other purposes, such as cosmetology and traditional medicine.
- Chickpeas, more than all other crops, contain the essential amino acid methionine. It is essential for the human body because it is directly involved in the synthesis of neurotransmitters such as adrenaline and acetylcholine. And these substances in turn affect the full transmission of different impulses by nerve fibers, that is, they normalize the nerve cells. This process activates the acceleration of various nervous reactions in the body, and also helps to improve memory and blood flow in the brain, helps in analytical thinking and overall increase the efficiency of human performance. And, of course, we should not forget that thanks to methionine, which is directly involved in the metabolism of vitamins and fats, the digestive system produces various absorbing antitoxic substances. They can quickly neutralize the harmful effects of pathogenic bacteria and microorganisms. And that is why we can say that products from besan help to restore the body during food poisoning.
- Continuing to talk about the useful properties of chickpea flour, it is also worth noting the fact that it absolutely does not contain the usual gluten for wheat or rye flour. Thus, besan will be a real salvation for people suffering from allergic reactions or gluten or lactose intolerance. Rather popular besan is also among those people who for one reason or another follow a strict diet and are limited in the consumption of flour products. Dishes and pastries made of chickpea flour are considered dietary and healthy, because they speed up the metabolism.
- Thanks to the research of Australian scientists, which was conducted at the beginning of the nineteenth century, it was found that chickpea flour products practically do not raise blood glucose levels, keeping them within the limits of generally acceptable norms. That's why it is safe to say that people suffering from various forms of diabetes can safely eat dishes made of besan.
- It is also recommended to include besan in the diet of people who suffer from high blood cholesterol and cardiovascular diseases. According to the data of clinical researches of the American scientists spent from the beginning of 2006 to 2007 it has been established that thanks to its unique structure in which there is a set of useful substances and minerals in the balanced quantity, besan actively promotes a removal of superfluous cholesterol, including cholesterol plugs, from an organism. Such hypocholesterolemic processes are due to the high content of phytosterols in the composition of chickpea flour, because it is they who are able to dissolve cholesterol of animal origin. Also due to the high content of plant fiber, which acts as an absorbent agent, cholesterol molecules are less absorbed, still starting from the intestines, and therefore are eliminated from the body much easier.
- People who are overweight can actively include in their diet dishes from besan due to the fact that the product contains a large amount of protein, calcium and zinc. They are the ones that improve metabolism and contribute to the loss of extra pounds. The presence of B vitamins in this flour, as well as tocopherols, zinc, magnesium and iron, strengthen the immune system and improve hematopoiesis.
- Another useful property of chickpea flour is that due to the large amount of phosphorus, calcium, proteins, magnesium, iron and vitamins, this product has a positive effect on the intensity of growth and harmony of puberty in young and middle-aged children. That is why besan dishes are also recommended for children from the age of four. Elderly people can benefit from eating chickpea flour to prevent osteoporosis as well as to support visual acuity.
The benefits of chickpea flour for weight loss
As mentioned above, chickpea flour is very useful for people who have excess weight, because with its help you can effectively, and most importantly - without harming the body to shed extra pounds. It was also said that this product helps to restore and speed up the process of metabolism in the body, which is very helpful for all people who lose weight.
Even if a person just wants to bring his body back to normal and start eating right, besan is the best helper, because it has amazing dietary properties. They are due, first of all, to the fact that this product has a very low glycemic index, which means that it a priori will not let extra pounds appear. The majority of world-renowned nutritionists and fitness trainers unanimously recommend including chickpea flour in your diet to everyone who wants to lose weight and start eating right. Of course, we are not talking about baked goods and sugary products, but about unleavened pastries, various porridges, soups and other dishes. So it is worth paying closer attention to them.
Of course, continuing with this topic, many people are interested in the question of what kind of dishes from chickpea flour are recommended to eat during weight loss, so that they bring the most effective results. Many culinary chefs and nutritionists advise using besan as a breading mixture, which can be added during the preparation of various soups, stews, sauces and omelets. You can also afford to make waffles, pancakes or pancakes several times a week, which, in addition to being very healthy, are also incredibly delicious. Of course, we should not forget about unleavened cakes from chickpea flour, which can easily replace the usual bakery products. From time to time you can treat yourself to such delicacies as ladoos or chickpea halva.
Chickpea flour in medicine
Since chickpea flour is rich in various vitamins, trace elements, minerals and other beneficial substances, it is not surprising that it has a lot of medicinal properties and is actively used in folk medicine. This product is recommended to be added to daily dishes:
- In disorders of the central nervous system, such as during prolonged and deep depression, Parkinson's or Alzheimer's disease, as well as multiple sclerosis, schizophrenia, autism or ADD.
- Diseases of the digestive organs, such as cirrhosis of the liver or fatty liver damage, and some forms of hepatitis.
- Cardiovascular abnormalities, such as early-onset arrhythmias, atherosclerosis, ischemia, and stroke.
- Eye diseases such as glaucoma, cataracts, or sharp decrease in visual acuity.
- Metabolic disorders in the body, resulting in obesity, diabetes of varying severity, or stunted growth of the child.
- Musculoskeletal problems such as arthrosis, arthritis, osteoporosis or post-traumatic syndrome after serious injuries or even minor bruises or sprains.
- Pathologies of the autoimmune system, enzymopathy.
- Anemia, as well as heavy menstrual bleeding, including postpartum, metrorrhagia.
- Severe toxemia or serious delayed intrauterine development of the baby.
- Various disorders of the genitourinary system, sexual dysfunction, lack of erection, prostatitis, prostate adenoma and other diseases.
Among other things, it is also worth noting that soup with besan is very useful during the treatment of various respiratory diseases, such as pneumonia, bronchitis, laryngitis, tuberculosis, tracheitis or bronchiectasis. Due to the large number of active ingredients in its composition, chickpea flour helps to remove phlegm from the respiratory system.
Also due to the abundance of B vitamins in its chemical composition, this product effectively treats various skin diseases such as eczema, dermatitis, seborrhea, various rashes or itching.
Due to its increased antioxidant properties, many modern doctors consider chickpea flour as a way to fight cancer cells, but this remains at the level of hypothesis. Despite this uncertain position of doctors, in folk medicine chickpea flour is actively used to treat various types of cancer in the early stages, in particular the gastrointestinal tract and digestive system in general. It is especially recommended to include this product in their daily diet to those who are predisposed to cancer.
Chickpea flour in cosmetology
Chickpea flour is very often used by Oriental and Asian cosmetologists. This is not surprising, as it has a beneficial effect on both the skin and the hair. On the basis of besan you can create various cleansing, brightening, matting and moisturizing masks for skin and hair, body scrubs, as well as compresses, which will help to get rid of minor scars and scars. Among other things, this product can also be used for depilation.
The most common and effective recipe for besan body scrub is quite simple:
- In a container, combine three parts chickpea flour, two parts cornmeal and part oat flakes.
- Add a little milk to this mixture and stir to a thick porridge.
- Apply to a damp clean body, massage for five minutes with a sponge and then rinse with warm water.
- After the procedure is finished, moisturize the skin.
It is important to make this scrub just before use, because it tends to dry quickly.
The most popular and effective mask for hair with chickpea flour is a mixture of besan and cottage cheese in equal quantities, with the addition of lemon juice and one egg white. Apply it to damp clean hair and keep for 40 minutes, then rinse thoroughly under warm running water.
Harms and contraindications
No matter how useful chickpea flour is, there are some contraindications that can not only harm the body, but even pose a serious threat:
- People prone to flatulence, diarrhea and other gastrointestinal disorders should reduce the use of besan to a minimum or abandon it altogether.
- Those who suffer from food allergies should also be cautious about eating this product, since legumes themselves are strong allergens.
- Under no circumstances should you consume besan to those who suffer from ulcerative diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, as well as acute kidney disease or thrombophlebitis, patients with gout should also give up this product.
In general, there are no other contraindications, but those who have not previously used chickpea flour in food, it is better to start doing it gradually, as this product is very specific.
How to store chickpea flour
If chickpea flour is purchased, then there will be no special problems with storage, as it is often sold in a special paper package. It should be stored in a dry place at room temperature, so that the flour does not get damp and does not lose its useful properties. Such storage can last no more than a year, after which it is not recommended to eat it.
If the package is opened, or the flour was made at home, it should be placed in an airtight container with a tightly closed lid and stored in the refrigerator or freezer for no more than six months. If after opening the flour is stored at room temperature, its shelf life is reduced to one month.
How to make chickpea flour at home
There are only two ways to make chickpea flour at home:
- Grind chickpeas in a coffee grinder and sift out coarse particles.
- Place chickpeas in a preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, then let cool, grind in a coffee grinder and sift.
The difference between these methods is that in the first case you get flour that resembles raw peas in taste. It is well suited for lean and salty dishes, in particular flatbreads and soups. Flour prepared in the second way acquires a great flavor and aroma of nuts and is well suited for baked goods and confectionery products.
What can be made from chickpea flour: recipes
Since chickpea flour has many useful qualities, it is not surprising that it is preferably added to food. That is why there are many all kinds of recipes using this product. Each country has its own special chickpea flour dishes, but the most common are hummus and cutlets. They are especially loved by vegetarians because they do not contain animal products.
- Hummus is a pate of chickpea flour, which is used as a snack. To prepare it, besan is well mixed with water and put on a low heat. When the mass boils and thickens, add olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper and other spices to taste. Keep the mixture on the fire a little longer, then take it off and let it cool, then serve it to the table.
- Chickpea flour cutlets are made quickly and easily. You need to mix grated carrots, chopped greens, chickpea flour, salt and spices to taste, as well as pour a little water. Thoroughly mix the mass, form cutlets and fry in olive oil for three minutes on each side.
Interesting facts about chickpeas
- As you know, chickpeas were first cultivated 7,000 years ago in the Middle East, after which they quickly spread to Rome and Ancient Greece. Chickpeas were preferably used to make porridges and soups, but after a while they were used to make besan, which was used to make unleavened pastries and muffins.
- Since ancient times people knew about the useful properties of chickpeas, and therefore dishes made of this product were often used not just as ordinary food, but also to treat various diseases, in particular pathologies of the lungs and the male genitourinary system. It was believed that dishes made of chickpea flour help fight male impotence and increase potency.
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