Are Chickpeas Good for PCOS? (Expert Answer)

Short Answer: Chickpeas are good for PCOS. Because they have fiber and protein, which can help regulate your blood sugar and appetite, and iron and folate, which can prevent anemia and support a healthy pregnancy.

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a condition that affects your ovaries and hormones.

In PCOS, your body produces too much androgen, a male hormone, which interferes with the normal development and release of eggs from your ovaries.

This can lead to various health problems, such as irregular periods, infertility, acne, excess hair growth, weight gain, and insulin resistance.

One of the key factors in managing PCOS is diet.

What you consume can affect your blood sugar levels, which can impact your PCOS symptoms and overall health.

To effectively manage PCOS, you should consume fiber-rich foods like whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and legumes, and avoid refined carbohydrates and added sugars like white bread, pastries, soda, and candy.

Now, chickpeas are a type of legume that are high in protein, fiber, iron, folate, and other nutrients.

People usually eat them cooked, boiled, roasted, or mashed, and use them in dishes like hummus, falafel, salads, soups, and curries.

Chickpeas are good for PCOS because they contain fiber and protein, which can help regulate your blood sugar and appetite, and lower your cholesterol and blood pressure.

They also contain iron and folate, which can prevent anemia and support a healthy pregnancy, if you are trying to conceive.

One cup of cooked chickpeas can give you 14.5 grams of protein (29% of your daily needs), 12.5 grams of fiber (50% of your daily needs), 4.7 milligrams of iron (26% of your daily needs), and 282 micrograms of folate (71% of your daily needs).

Fiber can help slow down the digestion and absorption of carbohydrates, which can prevent spikes and crashes in your blood sugar and insulin levels.

This can reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease, and improve your hormonal balance and ovulation.

Protein can help you feel full and satisfied, which can prevent overeating and weight gain.

It can also support your muscle mass and metabolism, and reduce inflammation and oxidative stress in your body.

Iron can help your red blood cells carry oxygen to your tissues and organs, which can boost your energy and immunity.

It can also prevent iron deficiency anemia, which can cause fatigue, weakness, and irregular periods.

Folate can help your body make DNA and other genetic material, which is essential for cell division and growth.

It can also prevent neural tube defects, such as spina bifida, in your baby, if you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant.

Furthermore, chickpeas are a plant-based food and plant-based foods are good for PCOS.

Because, they can lower your intake of saturated fat and cholesterol, which can improve your heart health and lower your risk of stroke.

They can also provide you with antioxidants, phytochemicals, and other beneficial compounds, which can modulate your hormone levels and protect your cells from damage.

You can eat one to two cups of chickpeas per day safely.

More than that can cause bloating, gas, and digestive discomfort, due to their high fiber content.

Also, you shouldn’t eat chickpeas if you have a food allergy or intolerance to them, to prevent anaphylaxis, hives, or abdominal pain.

Because, they contain proteins that can trigger an immune response in some people.

You can buy fresh, canned, or dried chickpeas in your local market or can order them online.

Always choose organic, non-GMO, and low-sodium varieties, if possible.

Because, they can reduce your exposure to pesticides, herbicides, and additives, which can disrupt your hormones and harm your health.

You can store them in a cool, dry, and dark place for up to a year, or in the refrigerator for up to a week, after cooking them.

Finally, remember, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, including a balanced diet, regular exercise, stress management, and essential medical care, is key to managing PCOS effectively.

I always recommend my PCOS patients to follow a PCOS-friendly diet to improve their overall well-being, and enjoy a longer and healthier life.

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About the Author

Abdur Rahman Choudhury

Abdur Rahman Choudhury is a nutritionist in West Bengal, India, with a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Biochemistry.

He has done his diploma in nutrition from Fabulous Body Inc (US), and completed various certification courses from several universities. He also has considerable research experience in PCOS.

Abdur currently lives in India and keeps fit by weight training and eating mainly home-cooked meals.

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