Chickpeas and Keto: Evaluating Their Suitability for a Low-Carb Diet

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Chickpeas are a great addition to salads, hummus, and stews. They make meals healthier, tastier, and more filling, but are chickpeas keto friendly though?

If you are thinking of going keto, you are probably second-guessing all the foods you are used to eating without a thought. Legumes and grains generally don’t fit the bill of keto requirements, but we understand that you need to know for sure.

Chickpeas are tiny, so one small serving shouldn’t hurt, or could it? Well, do not fret! We are here to tell you everything you need to know about chickpeas and keto.

Are Chickpeas Keto Friendly?

Chickpeas

Serving Size: 100g

not keto

Net Carbs

32.5g

Protein

14.5g

Fat

4.2g

Calories

269

Are Chickpeas Keto Friendly?

Chickpeas, or garbanzo beans, are a staple in many diets worldwide. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, a serving size of 100 grams provides 269 calories, mainly from carbohydrates and protein.

Unfortunately, chick pears are not keto-friendly. The keto diet restricts carb intake to around 20g net carbs daily. With 32.5g net carbs in a single serving of chickpeas, they’re too high in carbohydrates for typical keto guidelines.

Legumes like chickpeas are rich sources of plant-based protein and fiber, vital macronutrients for our health. However, when it comes to maintaining ketosis – the metabolic state that the keto diet aims for – it’s all about the fats and low-carb foods.

Chickpeas are nutrient-dense legumes offering plant-based protein and lots of fiber, among other vital nutrients; their high carbohydrate content makes them unsuitable for the classic ketogenic diet where fat is king.

Pros Of Eating Chickpeas On The Keto Diet

  • High in protein: Chickpeas contain 14.5g of protein per 100g serving, which can help keep you full and satisfied.
  • Rich in fiber: Chickpeas can support a healthy digestive system with 12.5g of fiber per serving.
  • Low in fat: Chickpeas have only 4.2g of total fat per serving, which is relatively low compared with other legumes and pulses.
  • Contains complex carbohydrates: The total carbohydrates in chickpeas are predominantly complex carbs, which are digested more slowly than simple sugars. This could potentially limit the impact on your blood sugar levels.
  • Nutrient-dense: Besides being high in protein and fiber, chickpeas also provide a range of essential vitamins and minerals, including iron, zinc, phosphorus, and B vitamins.
  • If you’re vegetarian or trying to cut down on meat, chickpeas can help meet daily protein needs.

Cons Of Eating Chickpeas On The Keto Diet

  • Chickpeas have a high carbohydrate count of 45g per 100g serving, which is well beyond the keto-recommended daily intake.
  • The net carbs in chickpeas are 32.5g, which exceeds the daily limit of 20g for those on a keto diet.
  • Consuming chickpeas on a keto diet can kick you out of ketosis due to their high carb content.
  • Despite being rich in fiber and protein, the carb content in chickpeas makes them unsuitable for a low-carb, high-fat diet like keto.
  • Chickpeas could lead to weight gain instead of weight loss sought by many following the keto diet due to their high-calorie count (269 calories).

Benefits Of Eating Chickpeas

Did you know chickpeas are more than just the star ingredient in hummus? They’re a nutritional powerhouse! According to the U.S.D.A, chickpeas (100g) offer many health benefits.

Firstly, Chickpeas are legumes. They provide a good source of plant-based protein – 14.5g per serving. If you’re vegetarian or trying to cut down on meat, including chickpeas in your recipes can help meet your protein needs.

  • Fiber Rich: One serving provides 12.5g of fiber. This aids digestion and keeps you feeling full for longer periods.
  • Low Fat: They’re a low-fat food option with only 4.2g total fat per serving.
  • Nutrient Dense: Besides macronutrients (carbs, proteins, and fats), chickpeas also contain essential minerals and vitamins for better health.

Keto diet followers might wonder whether chickpeas fit into their diet plan given its carb content – total carbs at 45g with net carbs at 32.5g per serving according to nutrition facts given above – which is higher than the recommended daily carb intake for keto diets (20g).

While nutritious, chickpeas aren’t considered keto-friendly because they may affect ketosis due to their carbohydrate content and glycemic index.

Alternatives To Chickpeas On The Keto Diet

1. Almonds

Almonds are a keto-friendly alternative to chickpeas. They are high in healthy fats and proteins but low in net carbs, making them suitable for the keto diet. Consuming almonds can provide your body with the necessary fuel without risking ketosis.

2. Avocado

Avocados are another good substitute for chickpeas on a keto diet. Avocados have an ideal balance of high fats, fiber, and low carbs. They’re also versatile in recipes, making an excellent base for a nutritious keto hummus.

3. Olives

Keri Glassman, a nutritionist, states olives could perfectly match those missing chickpeas on their keto diet plan. Olives offer high amounts of healthy fats and very few carbs per serving, controlling your carb intake and satisfying your snack cravings.

4. Cauliflower

We also recommend cauliflower as a wholesome alternative to legumes like chickpeas due to its lower carbohydrate and calorie content. When used in keto recipes, it serves as a wonderful ingredient in dishes such as cauliflower hummus, which is low in net carbs.

Conclusion

So, are chickpeas keto-friendly? While these legumes are undoubtedly nutritious and delicious, they are not meant for the ketogenic lifestyle.

Despite being an excellent source of plant-based protein and dietary fiber, a significant amount of their calories come from carbs. A mere 100-gram serving of chickpeas is enough to trigger a carb overload and hinder ketosis.

Chickpeas can work with several other diet plans for weight loss, such as the vegetarian diet, intermittent fasting, and calorie count diet; sadly, keto is not in the cards. 

There you have it, the chickpea conundrum solved! If you’re a little disappointed, you must know that the world of low-carb alternatives is vast and exciting. Soybeans and peanuts are two keto-friendly alternatives to chickpeas that will definitely make up for what you’re missing.