Making Carbs Count chickpeas


Per 100g cooked

364 calories, 6g fat, zero cholesterol, 61g

carbs of which 11g sugar, and 17g dietary

fibre, with Iron 34%, Magnesium 28%,

Potassium 25%, Vitamin B-12 (25%).



continued over

According to Wikipedia,

the chickpea (Cicer

arietinum) is a legume,

various types of which

are variously known as

gram, Bengal gram, chana dal (or Indian

pea), garbanzo bean and Egyptian pea.

Its seeds are high in protein. It is one of the

earliest cultivated legumes: 7,500-yearold remains

have been found in the Middle

East. So, they've been around a while and

for good reason. This pulse in particular

packs a lot of punch and are extremely

versatile in cooking.

Grown primarily in West Asia, India,

and in the Mediterranean, there are two

forms of chickpeas, Desi, which are

darker and smaller, and Kabuli, with a

lighter color and a softer coat. Kabuli

chickpeas are more usually the ones that

come in cans.

Over time the Latin name 'cicer'

became changed via the French language,

where the dried seeds were referred to as

'pois chiche', which in English became

'chich-pease' then chickpeas. Meanwhile,

in Spain the term garbanzo cropped up,

What is a pulse?

probably via the Basque language where

the word 'garbantzu' was probably used,

which meant 'dry seed'.

Feel the pulse

Chickpeas are pulses (see sidebar) which

can be dried, ground and made into

flour. Unknowingly, many folk serve up

double-chickpea dishes, serving falafel

with houmous and often adding more

whole chickpeas as a garnish on top of

the houmous. Because they have a mild

flavour, chickpeas are good for mixing

with other ingredients and handle spices


Gram flour (or besan) is a staple

ingredient in the cuisine of the Indian

subcontinent and is used for traditional

flatbreads like roti, besan cheela and is

also used to make the batter that pakoras

are cooked in. As chickpeas have no

gluten, then foods made with chickpea

flour are suitable for coeliacs and those

with gluten intolerance.

Chickpeas are a starchy carbohydrate

and do not produce high glucose in the

body when consumed, so rate well on

Pulses are annual leguminous crops

yielding between one and 12 grains

or seeds of variable size, shape and

colour within a pod, used for both food

and feed. The term 'pulses' is limited

to crops harvested solely for dry grain,

thereby excluding crops harvested

green for food, which are classified

as vegetable crops, as well as those

crops used mainly for oil extraction

and leguminous crops that are used

exclusively for sowing purposes.

They are leguminous plants that have

nitrogen-fixing properties, which can

contribute to increasing soil fertility

and have a positive impact on the


Pulse crops such as lentils, beans,

peas and chickpeas are a vital source

of plant-based proteins and amino acids

for people around the globe and should

be eaten as part of a healthy diet to

address obesity, as well as to prevent

and help manage chronic diseases

such as diabetes, coronary conditions

and cancer; they are also an important

source of plant-based protein for


Pulses are a low fat source of protein

with high levels of protein and fibre.

Pulses also contain important vitamins

and minerals like iron, potassium and

folate. Most national dietary guidelines

recommend pulses as part of a healthy

diet. Studies have shown that people

who eat at least ½ cup of pulses per

day have higher intakes of fibre, protein,

calcium, potassium, folate, zinc, iron,

and magnesium as well as lower intakes

of total and saturated fat

The amount of protein in beans,

lentils, chickpeas and peas is 2-3 times

the levels found in cereal grains like

wheat, rice, quinoa, oats, barley, and

corn. Compared to animal and many

other plant-based sources of protein,

pulses are a more affordable and

sustainable protein source.

One cup of cooked pulses gives

you more than half the amount of fibre

you need for the entire day. Pulses also

contain both soluble and insoluble fibre.

Soluble fibre can help manage body

weight, blood sugar levels and lower

cholesterol. Insoluble fibre on the other

hand, assists with digestion and regularity.

Pulses also contain resistant starch, a type

of carbohydrate that behaves like fibre in

the body; and has been shown to have

similar health benefits such as reduced

circulating cholesterol and blood sugar

levels as well as improved gut health.


the glycemic index and therefore are a

good choice for people with diabetes.

They can also help to control hunger, due

to their high protein and fibre content.

Chickpeas contain a significant amount

of magnesium. Deficiency of magnesium

can increase the risk for heart attacks and

many other cardiovascular diseases, so

including more chickpeas in the diet could

be beneficial for heart health.



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  7. Leicester Diabetes Centre, JDRF, Rachel Connor JDRF, T1Exchange
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  10. Desang diabetes magazine diabetes diet
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  12. Accu-Chek Mobile blood glucose system
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  14. The tyranny of HbA1c time to talk now about Time in Range
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  16. ADA Consensus Report Outcome Measures Beyond HbA1C for Type 1 Diabetes
  17. hypoglycaemia, hyperglycaemia, time in range
  18. patient quality of life
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  20. HbA1c, mean glucose, Time in Range
  21. Ascensia Contour Next One Diabetes blood test meters
  22. My Diabetes Kit Debbie Green
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  24. My Diabetes Kit Debbie Green, Accu-Chek Roche, Medtronic
  25. London Medical, London Diabetes Centre, private diabetes clinic
  26. Spirit Healthcare, Chris Barker, Leicester, Empower
  27. Spirit Healthcare, Chris Barker, Leicester, Empower
  28. Making Carbs Count chickpeas
  29. Making Carbs Count chickpeas
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