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Green Peas Health Benefits, Nutritional Value and Uses

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What is Green Peas?

Pea is an annual herbaceous vine which requires trellis to support its growth. It flourishes under well-drained, sandy soil supplemented with adequate moisture and cool weather conditions. Short stalked, green pods appear by late winter or early spring. Each pod measures about 2-3 inches long, swollen or compressed, straight or slightly curved, filled with single row of 2-10, light-green, smooth edible seeds.In general, the pods harvested while just short of reaching maturity, at the point when their seeds are green, soft, sweet and edible as raw. Allowing the pods to mature further would make seeds less sweet, bitter and turn light-green to yellow.Pea tendrils are also edible. They are delicate, tender top-shoots of young pea plant. Pea tendrils have flavor akin to peas. The tendrils and leafy-shoots are one of favored item in salads and cooking in many East and South-east Asian regions.Snow peas or sugar snap peas are different species of peas wherein whole immature green pod, including its outer peel can be eaten like a vegetable.

Botanically, pea plant is an herbaceous vine. It belongs to the family of Fabaceae, in the genus: Pisum. Scientific name: Pisum sativum. Some of the common names include english peas, sweet peas, garden peas, pease,…etc.

Health Benefits of Green Peas

Prevents anaemia and fatigue: In case you feel stressed out at the end of the day then you can try some boiled peas with a pinch of salt and pepper to boost your energy levels. It is because; peas are loaded with iron, a mineral which can help prevent anaemia and fatigue, particularly in women.  Also, the higher vitamin content in this vegetable ensures that you don’t feel fatigued after a tiring day.

Improves your bone health: Vitamin K, present in green peas helps in absorbing calcium making it a wonderful food item for enhancing your bone health. Nearly 50% of your daily Vitamin K1 requirement is fulfilled by a cup of boiled peas. Apart from that nutrients like Vitamin B1 and folic acid are also found abundantly in peas which in turn help to prevent osteoporosis.

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Fights and Damages Diabetes: Manganese found in green peas is essential to help with proper production of digestive enzymes responsible for a process called gluconeogenesis. Gluconeogenesis involves the transformation of protein’s amino acids into sugar and the balance of sugar within the bloodstream. Although the exact mechanism still isn’t clear, manganese has been shown to help prevent overly high blood sugar levels that can contribute to diabetes. Green Peas consists of 0.594 mg of manganese which is 25.83% of the daily recommended value. Including green peas is the best option for fighting diabetes.

Prevents signs of ageing:
Just like metal rusts after exposure to air, our bodies also suffer from free radical damage. The presence of antioxidants in green peas help to reduces free radical damage and also removes harmful toxins from the body. Therefore, consume more peas to slow down this process and prevent signs of ageing.

Improves your immunity: Strong immune system is essential for fighting infections and protects you from a wide range of diseases. Since green peas are a good source of Vitamin C in addition to being packed with various nutrients, eating them improves your immunity as well as prevents from several other immune systems related illnesses as well.

Heart health: Vitamin K present in green peas may help keep lower blood pressure by removing the build-up of several minerals in the arteries (mineralization), allowing the heart to freely push blood through the body. Mineralization occurs naturally with age and is a major risk factor for heart disease. Sufficient intake of vitamin K rich food like green peas has also been shown to lower the risk of stroke. Green peas consist of 36 µg of vitamin K which is 30.00% of the daily recommended value.

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Pregnancy and Birth Defects: Green peas consist of Vitamin B9 which is a reliable resource for limiting defects during pregnancy and the birth of a child. It is a common situation that pregnant women maintaining a diet deficient of this vitamin are far less likely to deliver a healthy child. The birth defects caused by its deficiency include neural tube defects. Therefore, Vitamin B9 efficiently improves the chances of giving birth to a healthy, happy child.

Prevents stomach cancer: Green Peas consists of considerable amount of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents which helps to keep body healthy and lower your chances of suffering from cancer. It is mostly achieved because of the presence of coumestrol, a polyphenolic compound, which has been related with decreased risk of stomach cancer.

Restless Leg Syndrome: Iron deficiency is one of the causes of the restless leg syndrome. Green peas consist of 2.13 mg of iron which is 26.63% of the daily recommended value. Most research on this syndrome has focused on iron. Low levels of iron in the blood are a major cause of the condition, therefore proper intake of iron supplements in essential as per doctor’s recommendations. This is connected to muscle spasms, which can be one of the symptoms of iron deficiency.

Curing Cataracts (Eye Disorder): Cataracts are the most common conditions of visual problems which are caused due to the deficiencies of vitamin C. A decrease in the level of vitamin C in the lens of the human eye has been seen more commonly when cataracts are present. Green peas consist of 58 mg of Vitamin C which is 64.44% of the daily recommended value. So people suffering from eye disorders must consume more green peas regularly to cure cataract.  An increase of vitamin C intake increases the blood supply to the ocular areas of the body and cures all eye related disorders.

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 Enhances Learning: Thiamine is an important vitamin for increasing focus, energy, fighting chronic stress, and possibly preventing memory loss. Research has connected thiamine deficiency to problems learning and retaining information. One study showed that thiamine caused quick reaction times and feelings of clear-headedness in those taking tests. Vitamin B1 rich foods must be consumed to solve this particular disorder. Green Peas consists of 0.386 mg of vitamin b1 which is 32.17% of the daily recommended value which means including green peas in your regular diet will definitely help to solve this problems easily.

Proper growth: Copper which is found abundantly in green peas is extremely important for normal growth and health. Therefore, it is definitely important to include this mineral in balanced form in regular diets of an individual. It is helpful in protection of skeletal, nervous and cardiovascular systems of the body. Green peas, lentils, almonds, asparagus and mushrooms are some of the best source of copper so including these items in your regular diet helps to fulfill the copper requirement of the body and helps to solve all the copper deficiencies related disorders.

Uses of Green Peas

 

  • Fresh peas are often eaten boiled and flavored with butter and/or spearmint as a side dish vegetable.
  • Dried peas are often made into a soup or simply eaten on their own
  • In Chinese cuisine, the tender new growth [leaves and stem] (commonly used in stir-fries..
  • In Greece, Tunisia, Turkey, Cyprus, and other parts of the Mediterranean, peas are made into a stew with lamb and potatoes.
  • In Hungary and Serbia, pea soup is often served with dumplings and spiced with hot paprika.