Green peas offer numerous health benefits. They are rich in calcium, phosphorus, iron, beta carotene, B complex vitamins, vitamin C and antioxidants. They are the most nutritious leguminous vegetable. Green peas are winter crop and they are available from December to April. Health benefits of green peas are:
• Peas are low in calories. So are good for the people who are on weight loss diets. But the glycemic index of the peas is high so the diabetics should not take too much of peas at one time.
• Peas are rich in vitamin C which is an antioxidant and helps to avoid harmful reactions caused by free radicals. Vitamin C is also required for the healthy tissues so good for healthy skin. It is also required for boosting the immune system and for the absorption of iron. Vitamin C also prevents recurrent cold and cough.
• Peas also contain good amount of vitamin A which is again a strong antioxidant and avoids oxidative stress caused by free radicals. Vitamin A is also required for vision and to prevent oral and lung cancers.
• Green peas contain insoluble fiber which helps to maintain intestinal motility and also helps to avoid constipation. Fiber present in green peas also helps to lower the cholesterol which is the main cause of cardiovascular diseases.
• Peas are rich in B complex vitamins which help in the overall functioning of the body. They are required for the metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Vitamin B complex is also required for good hair and skin, digestion, energy production, functioning of nervous system and to form red blood cells.
• Peas also contain folate which is required for avoiding neurological problems in newborns. So are very good for pregnant women.
Nutritional value of 100 gm of green peas as per nutritive value of Indian foods
• Moisture (g): 72.9
• Protein (g): 7.2
• Fat (g): 0.1
• Minerals (g): 0.8
• Crude Fiber (g): 4.0
• Carbohydrates (g): 15.9
• Energy (Kcal): 93
• Calcium (mg): 20
• Phosphorus (mg): 139
• Iron (mg): 1.5
• Carotene (mcg): 83
• Thiamine (mg): 0.25
• Riboflavin (mg): 0.01
• Niacin (mg): 0.8
• Vitamin C (mg): 9
• Peas are also rich in protein. Proteins are the building blocks of the body and are required for the synthesis of each and every cell of the body. Proteins are also very much required for healthy hair and skin.
• Peas are rich in phosphorus and calcium. These two nutrients are required to strengthen the teeth and bones.
• Peas are rich in iron. Iron is required to fight fatigue, endorse proper R.B.C. formation and to prevent anaemia. Iron is also a very important mineral for carrying oxygen from the lungs to the entire body. Green peas also contain phytonutrients.
Always purchase for the fresh peas, which are firm and smooth. Their color should be lively green. Those whose colors are light or dark or those that are yellow or whitish should be avoided. One can also store them in refrigerator in air tight bags.