22 Aug 2021: #HealthBytes: Healthy reasons to include peas in your diet
Green peas are nutrient-dense, edible legumes that are rich in dietary fiber, starch, antioxidants, and several vitamins. While there are many varieties of peas, snow peas, sugar snap peas, and garden peas are commonly used in food preparations. They are also a part of several diet plans owing to their low calories and high fiber. Here's more on their health benefits.
Digestion: Is rich in fiber and aids in digestion
Fiber-rich foods feed the good bacteria in the gut, thus playing a vital role in maintaining a healthy gut microbiome. Peas are rich in insoluble fibers that help the waste pass more quickly through the digestive system. Including peas in the diet will also help keep several gastrointestinal complications at bay. These include inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, and colon cancer, too.
Eye health: Contains carotenoids and vitamins that protect the eyes
Carotenoids such as lutein and zeaxanthin are important nutrients that protect the eyes from eye conditions like cataracts, age-related macular degeneration, etc. Not just carotenoids, but peas are also a good source of vitamin C and zinc that are essential to maintain healthy vision. In addition, both the carotenoids protect the eyes from harmful blue light emitted from gadgets that can cause macular degeneration.
Blood sugar: Has a low glycemic index, helps in regulating blood sugar
Glycemic index is a measure that notes the rate at which blood sugar levels rise after consuming food. Green peas have a low glycemic index which means that the blood sugar levels do not spike quickly but increase gradually after consuming the food. This also means that consuming green peas reduces the risk of several health conditions like diabetes and heart conditions, too.
Antioxidants: Contains antioxidants that reduces the effect of free radicals
Peas are a rich source of antioxidants like saponin that are known for their anti-cancer properties. The presence of vitamin K in peas reduces the risk of prostate cancer. Not just cancer, the antioxidant and vitamin C content of peas has potential anti-aging benefits as they reduce the damage caused by free radicals, which can lead to wrinkles and other signs of aging.
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