Peas boast impressive protein content, so much so that many commercial protein powder manufacturers utilise them as a primary ingredient. Dubbed a “powerhouse of nutrition,” peas are beneficial for our bodies and have a positive impact on the environment. Here’s an exploration of the myriad of benefits of eating peas:
1. Weight Management
Peas are low in fat, and a single cup contains fewer than 100 calories. Yet, they are rich in protein, fibre, and vital micronutrients.
2. Stomach Cancer Prevention
Peas contain significant amounts of polyphenols like coumestrol. Research suggests that a daily intake of just 2 milligrams of this phytonutrient can potentially help prevent stomach cancer. A cup of peas holds about 10 milligrams of coumestrol.
3, Anti-ageing, Enhanced Energy, and Immune System Support
The high antioxidant content in peas, including flavonoids (catechin and epicatechin), carotenoids (alpha-carotene and beta-carotene), phenolic acids (ferulic and caffeic acid), and polyphenols (coumestrol) contributes to these benefits.
4. Combatting Inflammation
Peas have significant anti-inflammatory properties, which can alleviate body aches. Chronic inflammation can lead to heart disease, cancer, and weight gain.
5. Blood Sugar Regulation
The fibre and protein in peas help modulate the rate at which sugar is absorbed into the bloodstream. Moreover, their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties contribute to the management of type 2 diabetes.
6. Heart Disease Protection
Antioxidants in peas promote healthy blood circulation. Additionally, vitamins B1, B3, and B6 present in peas can help lower homocysteine levels, thus decreasing the risk of heart attacks.
7. Environmentally Friendly
Pea plants have the natural ability to fix atmospheric nitrogen, reducing the need for synthetic fertilisers. Furthermore, when cultivated, the resulting organic matter enriches the soil. Pea plants also have a low water footprint.
8. Aids Digestion
The high fibre content in peas aids in promoting a healthy digestive system.
9. Bone Health
Just one cup of peas provides 44% of the daily recommended intake of vitamin K, which is essential for bone health. Additionally, the B vitamins in peas help combat osteoporosis.
10. Lowers Bad Cholesterol
Peas can help reduce levels of bad cholesterol and triglycerides thanks to the niacin they contain.
Incorporating peas into our diet offers a range of health benefits. From supporting weight management to protecting our hearts and bones, this humble vegetable truly stands out. Beyond the plate, peas are also champions of the environment, demonstrating that nature often gifts us solutions that nourish both our bodies and our planet. The next time you consider what to add to your meal, remember the incredible pea and all it brings to the table.