So just go ahead, indulge! Feel free to combine a few spoons of this delicious and creamy paste with your everyday snacks and dishes, and you will greatly benefit from it!
Now, read on to discover some of the most important hummus health benefits.
Basic Ingredients of Hummus
A variety of ingredients can be found in hummus, but its basic components are chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans. Chickpeas are high-protein legumes and one of the earliest cultivated vegetables in the Middle East.
The other important ingredient is tahini, which is a sesame-seed paste. It has a strong taste and it is used in small quantities to give flavor to hummus.
Other essential components of hummus include olive oil, lemon and garlic.
The above mentioned ingredients are an indispensable part of the traditional hummus. However, many variations exist today, and they may include olives, peppers, spinach, and different herbs and seeds.
But let’s see why all these ingredients are so healthy.
Hummus health benefits are primarily linked to its chief ingredient, i.e. chickpeas.
Chickpeas are a very healthy legume and one of the favorite ingredients of a vegetarian diet. They make an excellent substitute for meat and they boast many health benefits. Some of the most important ones are listed below.
- Chickpeas have relatively low calorie content – 1 cup of chickpeas contains 286 calories and 5 grams of fat.
- They do not have any cholesterol or saturated fats.
- They are rich in protein.
- Chickpeas are also an excellent source of fiber, and they are a perfect choice for diabetics, for they help maintain proper blood sugar levels
Fiber is also very effective in fighting cholesterol, and thereby keeping various heart diseases at bay.
- The high content of fiber in chickpeas can also promote a healthy digestive system and fight off constipation.
- Chickpeas contain many vitamins, among which vitamin B. They are especially rich in folic acid, which is extremely important during pregnancy. Folic acid promotes the brain development of the fetus, and helps prevent the risk of birth defects in babies.
- Chickpeas also contain copper, iron, magnesium, manganese and zinc, as well as molybdenum, a trace mineral that helps the body to detoxify sulfites, which cause asthma attacks.
Tahini is a paste made from ground sesame seeds, and it has some considerable health benefits that absolutely need to be mentioned. It is true that it has a high calorie and fat content (1 tbsp. has 89 calories), but the fats contained in tahini are mostly unsaturated fats. It is however used in really small amounts when making hummus.
- Tahini is a good source of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which the human body cannot produce. They are extremely important to human health, as they promote brain development, improve the immune system and regulate blood pressure.
- Tahini is also good source of protein.
- Tahini contains many different vitamins and minerals, but it is particularly rich in vitamins B2, B1, B15, B3 and B5, which are necessary for the human body to function properly.
For example, it contains 0.2mg of vitamin B1 (15% DV) per tablespoon. Also known as thiamin, this vitamin is extremely important for our nervous system and for maintaining the proper cellular function.
- Tahini is rich in calcium. 1 tablespoon of tahini provides 64mg (6% DV) of calcium, a mineral that has many important health benefits.
- 1 tablespoon of tahini contains also 12% of the necessary daily dose of phosphorus.
Another great hummus health benefit is that it contains olive oil.
Olive oil is a rich source of healthy fats. It contains plenty of monounsaturated fatty acids and relatively low saturated fat content. It helps regulate cholesterol levels and promotes heart health.
Lemon has numerous health benefits. It is rich in vitamin C and strengthens the immune system, while warding off infections. It has antioxidant and anti-cancer properties and helps the body fight diseases. It contains citric acid, which is a natural preservative that aids digestion.
Another ingredient of hummus is garlic, which is one of the most potent Natural antibiotics to fight infections. It has excellent antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal properties, important for keeping numerous diseases at bay.
Hopefully, this post has helped you understand that besides being extremely tasty, hummus has also numerous health benefits. So spread it, dip it, and top it, and share your hummus tips with us in the comment section below!