These days, almost everyone has tried a delicious hummus dip on crispy pita chips; in fact, Chickpeas (the main ingredient of hummus) have grown to be one of the most prominent snack foods in the world; but it hasn’t always been this way.
Statistics show that a rise in vegetarian/vegan diets, along with the mass marketing of chickpeas has resulted in a huge spike of consumer demand. This middle-eastern legume (also known as the garbanzo bean) is heralded as a “superfood”, high in protein and fiber; one of the “best choices for a healthy diet”.
Although we can’t argue with the fact that chickpeas are delicious and nutritious, we have to wonder why one legume gets a massive amount of attention when there is another choice that trumps the chickpea on almost every level of nutrients and minerals! This is the fault of fad marketing, but knowledge is breaking through as more and more information is available, and more and more people do their research.
The Undefeated Champion
Regardless of the popularity of chickpeas, Black Gram is the little lentil that has won our hearts as the Champion of the Legumes; the reason being that no other legume can measure up to the amazing health benefits that Black Gram has to offer!
When we are looking for foods that will give us dietary essentials, every gram of nutrients (like protein and fiber) counts, and every milligram of minerals (such as zinc and magnesium) will add up to help us reach the recommended Daily Value (DV).
So how does a serving of chickpeas compare to a serving of Black Gram?
The easiest way to see how the two legumes compare, is by laying out the facts; and when we put the nutritional facts of both chickpeas and Black Gram side by side, the superiority of Black Gram becomes obvious in all of the major elements of nutritional content. Take a look!
A Matter of Fact
(These comparisons are based on the nutritional content of a 100 g serving of raw mature seeds.)
Fiber: What Keeps Things Moving
Fiber is responsible for so many important tasks, it is a necessity for the prevention of heart disease, diabetes, and other ailments.
- Chickpeas- 12 g
- Black Gram – 18.3 g
Protein: The Body’s Building Blocks
Our hair, bones, skin, organs, (in other words, “everything”) is composed of high volumes of protein, and uses protein for maintenance and repair. We wouldn’t even exist without it!
- Chickpeas – 20.47 g
- Black Gram – 25.21 g
Iron: The Life of the Blood
The production of red blood cells requires plenty of iron. Many people are iron deficient, and this can eventually result in fatigue, pale skin, and dizziness. When we are careful to consume foods rich in iron, we allow our cardio system to circulate higher levels of oxygen in the bloodstream to every area of the body.
- Chickpeas – 4.31 mg
- Black Gram – 7.57 mg
Calcium: For Structure and Stability
If you have strong bones and teeth, you have calcium to thank for them. Calcium pairs up with protein to build and repair a healthy skeletal frame; if your diet is lacking in this important mineral, your body will not be able to maintain bone density or strong teeth. Calcium also helps the blood, the nervous system, and hormonal balances.
- Chickpeas – 57 mg
- Black Gram – 138 mg
Magnesium: The Humble Hero
We don’t hear too much about magnesium, but according to the National Institutes of Health it plays an important role in over 300 biochemical reactions in the human body!
- Chickpeas – 79 mg
- Black Gram – 267 mg
Potassium: Just the Right Electrolyte
This is another very important mineral that is often overlooked; but potassium helps prevent numerous health problems including (but not limited to) stroke, kidney stones, and even osteoporosis.
- Chickpeas – 718 mg
- Black Gram – 983 mg
Zinc: Guardian at the Gate
This trace mineral has the noble responsibility of upholding the body’s immune system, healing wounds, and cell growth. When levels of zinc start getting low, in becomes much harder for the body to fight off sickness of every kind, and the skin struggles to heal itself. Proper intake can ward off basic attacks such as the common cold, and help speed up recovery of illnesses.
- Chickpeas – 2.76 mg
- Black Gram – 3.35 mg
Nature’s Best Kept Secret
Although Black Gram has somehow remained little-known throughout most of the modern world, the wonders of Black Gram are no secret in its homeland of India, where it is known in the Hindi language as urad dal. For thousands of years, the native practitioners of Ayurvedic medicine have used and valued this legume as a highly effective remedy and preventative of a wide variety of ailments. From the nervous system, to the digestive system, to the reproductive system, Black Gram is great for your body!
Chickpeas in Ayurveda
Yes, chickpeas are put to use in Ayurvedic medicine too, and for many of the same ailments that Black Gram is used for. The fiber in chickpeas can assist in the regulation of blood sugar, the lowering of cholesterol levels, as well as helping in the prevention of obesity and heart disease. Some even use homemade chickpea paste for a facial cleanser and to help reduce age spots. But, let’s just say that whatever chickpeas can do health-wise, Black Gram can do it better!
Bigger Bang for Your Bean!
We don’t mean to belittle the popular chickpea, but there’s a reason why we are all about spreading the news of Black Gram above any other food; it simply can’t be beat as a powerhouse of health! Check out our website for more exciting information about this wonder food, and you can also browse through some delicious recipes that will help you incorporate Black Gram into your daily meal plan. Tell your friends what you’re learning, and help lead the way to a better quality of life.
Don’t stop searching for the best foods that will bring nourishment and healing into your lifestyle; your body will thank you!