Black Chickpeas (Kala Chana) During Pregnancy - Safe or Unsafe?

Black Chickpeas (Kala Chana) During Pregnancy - Health Benefits, Side Effects, And Healthy Recipes 

Black Chickpeas are a legume packed with nutrients such as protein, iron, fiber, and carbohydrates. In addition, they're a great source of vitamins such as B6 and C, folate and niacin, and minerals such as iron, copper, and phosphorus. Black chickpeas are also known as Bengal Beans.

Black Chickpeas During Pregnancy

Health Benefits of Black Chickpeas During Pregnancy

Black Chickpeas provide a wide range of health benefits during pregnancy. Some of the wonderful health benefits of black chickpeas during pregnancy are:

1. Healthy Digestive Tract

Fiber is an essential part of a healthy pregnancy diet. Bengal gram contains both soluble and insoluble fiber. The high fiber content of black chickpeas helps prevent constipation, improves digestion, and aids in the properly functioning of the digestive system.

2. Rich in Iron

Black chickpeas help to reduce the risk of anemia due to their high iron content. Iron plays a vital role in producing hemoglobin in red blood cells that delivers oxygen from the lungs to the body's tissues. Iron deficiency during pregnancy can cause anemia leading to other health complications such as tiredness, fatigue, dizziness, shortness of breath, or rapid heartbeat. 

In addition, if anemia is left untreated, it can lead to several complications such as preterm or low birth weight baby, postpartum depression, a baby with anemia, or a blood transfusion. To avoid all such complications, you must take an iron-rich diet throughout pregnancy.

3. Great Source of Protein

Black chickpeas are an excellent source of protein that plays a significant role in a healthy pregnancy. Suppose you're a vegetarian and are worried about your protein intake during pregnancy. Black chickpeas can be a great addition to your pregnancy diet as they're rich in protein and help fulfill your protein requirements. The high protein content of black chickpeas also helps to boost your energy levels during pregnancy.

4. Healthy Snack

The high fiber content and low glycemic index of black chickpeas make them a good food choice during pregnancy. In addition, black chickpeas are gluten-free, low in fat, and rich in vitamins and minerals, which make them a healthy addition to the pregnancy diet.

5. Prevent Birth Defects

Black chickpeas contain folate, which is essential to prevent congenital disabilities in babies.

6. Healthy Weight Gain

They contain both soluble and insoluble fiber. The soluble fiber content of black chickpeas helps improve digestion and lowers blood sugar levels, while insoluble fiber softens the stools and regulates bowel movements. The high fiber content of chickpeas helps you to keep full for a longer time and prevents you from overeating and bingeing on unhealthy foods. Hence it helps you to gain a healthy weight during pregnancy.

7. Prevent Osteoporosis

They contain phytonutrients such as saponins which works as an antioxidant and help to prevent osteoporosis.

8. Improves Cardiovascular Health

Black chickpeas contain phytonutrients, antioxidants, anthocyanins, cyanidin, and ALA. All these nutrients help to keep your blood vessels healthy so that blood can pass and circulate easily. So, regular consumption of black chickpeas helps to improve cardiovascular health.

9. Maintain Cholesterol Level

Black chickpeas contain soluble fiber, which helps to bind the bile acid and prevent it from being absorbed by your body, reducing cholesterol levels.

10. Reduces the Risk of Cancer

Black chickpeas contain phytonutrients and antioxidants, which help in reducing the risk of colon and breast cancer.

11. Maintain Electrolyte Levels

Black Chickpeas contain potassium and magnesium. Both of these minerals help to maintain electrolyte levels in your body, thereby regulating blood pressure levels.

12. Good for Hair and Skin

The high protein content of black chickpeas helps to strengthen your hair follicles and promote hair growth. In addition, black chickpeas contain vitamins A, C, and B6, zinc, copper, and selenium. All these nutrients play a crucial role in improving hair and skin health.

Nutritional Value of Black Chickpeas

The nutritional value of 100 g of raw chickpeas is:

Calories 378 kcal
Carbohydrates 62.95 g
Fats 6.04 g
Protein 20.47 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Dietary Fiber 12.2 g
Vitamin A 67 IU
Vitamin B1 (Thiamin) 0.477 mg
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 0.212 mg
Vitamin B3 (Niacin) 1.541 mg
Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine) 0.535 mg
Vitamin B9 (Folate) 557 µg
Vitamin C 4 mg
Sodium 24 mg
Potassium 718 mg
Calcium 57 mg
Iron 4.31 mg
Copper 0.656 mg
Magnesium 79 mg
Phosphorus 252 mg
Zinc 2.76 mg

Side Effects of eating Black Chickpeas during pregnancy

Black chickpeas are good to consume during pregnancy if eaten in limited quantities. However, overeating them can cause some side effects too. Some of the possible side effects caused due to overconsumption of black chickpeas are:

1. Black chickpeas contain high fiber, which may cause bloating, flatulence, cramps, or diarrhea if you eat them in excess amounts.

2. Avoid eating black chickpeas if you're allergic to legumes.

3. They may contain toxins on their surface, so wash them thoroughly and cook them properly.

4. Don't eat raw black chickpeas, as it may cause bloating, stomach gas, or digestion-related issues.

Ways to include Chickpeas in Pregnancy Diet

Here are some of the easy and simple ways to include Black Chickpeas in your pregnancy diet:

1. Black Chickpea Soup

Cut some veggies such as carrotsbeans, or any other veggies of your choice and pressure cook them along with black chickpeas, and your flavorful soup is ready.

2. Healthy Snack

Boil black chickpeas and add onion, tomato, salt, and black pepper to make a healthy snack.

3. Roast Black Chickpeas

You can roast black chickpeas to make a healthy and nutritious snack.

4. Several Dishes

You can make several dishes, such as hummus, curry, stews, or falafel with black chickpeas.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Can I eat black chickpeas during pregnancy?

Black chickpeas are a rich source of protein and iron. In addition, they help to prevent anemia and boost your energy levels during pregnancy. So, it's good to have them while pregnant in limited quantities.

2. Is it bad to eat too many black chickpeas?

Excess consumption of anything harms your health; the same applies to black chickpeas. They can cause diarrhea, flatulence, cramps, and bloating if you've them in excess.

3. Is it ok to eat black chana during pregnancy?

Yes, black chana is safe to consume during pregnancy if they're well cooked and you eat them in limited quantities. They're a good source of many essential nutrients for a healthy pregnancy. They're an excellent source of iron and particularly beneficial for pregnant women, lactating women, and growing children.

Black Chickpeas are power-packed with essential vitamins and minerals that play a significant role in maintaining maternal health as well as in the overall development of the fetus. They're highly nutritious which is gluten-free as well. Consult your doctor before including black chickpeas in your pregnancy diet.

Also, read other 'pregnancy-related articles:
DisclaimerThis content is intended for general information only and should not be used as the basis of patient treatment. The given content is not intended to substitute for professional medical advice, treatment, or any diagnosis. Always consult a doctor for more information. Our website doesn't claim responsibility for this information.

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