Green peas are a common side-dish on many American plates. However, did you know that green peas have many health benefits too? The World’s Healthiest Foods breaks down green peas and describe what they have in store inside.
Green peas are actually legumes and are related to lentils and chickpeas. Researchers believe that they originated in the Middle East and Asia from a type of field pea found in those regions. They were eaten dry until around the 16th century when Europeans began eating them fresh. Today Canada grows the most peas at 3 million tons annually.
One cup of cooked green peas packs a lot of nutrients, including:
- Vitamin K
- Vitamins B1, B2, B3, and B6.
- Vitamin C
Benefits of Green Peas
Inside green peas are properties that give it antioxidant and anti-inflammatory qualities.
They have epicatechin and catechin, which are flavonoids. They also have alpha and beta carotene. Interestingly, green peas contain omega-3 fatty acids which we normally associate with foods such as salmon. All of these factors mean green peas are great for fighting heart disease, arthritis, and type-2 diabetes.
Additionally, green peas help with controlling blood sugar. They contain 8-10 grams of fiber per cup. Although not processed by our digestive system, fiber helps our bodies to convert food into nutrients by controlling how starches are consumed and passing carbohydrates out of the digestive tract.
Another interesting fact about green peas is that they can protect us from stomach cancer. This is because one cup of green peas contains 10 milligrams of the cancer-fighting coumestrol. The study found that at least 2 milligrams of coumestrol were needed in order to lower the risk of cancer. Talk about a superfood!
Want to learn more about how green peas can have a positive impact on your health? Read the full article here: Green Peas.