Is Chana Good for Weight Loss? What Does the Expert Say?

Imagine a tiny legume that packs a nutritional punch, a humble powerhouse that has been fueling generations with its nutty goodness. Enter the world of chana, an unassuming yet mighty ally in your quest for a trimmer, healthier you. Often overlooked, this unsung hero is poised to redefine your perception of weight loss.

Brace yourself as we embark on a journey to unravel the secrets of this protein-packed wonder, unveiling its nutrient-dense composition, chana weight loss benefits, and mouthwatering recipes that will serve your taste buds while supporting your fitness goals. Get ready to embrace the chana revolution and discover how this tiny legume can be a game-changer in your pursuit of a leaner, more vibrant self.

Nutritional Value of Chana

When we talk about the nutritional value of chana, you’ll be amazed to learn its composition of nutrients. According to the USDA, 100 gm of chana (chickpeas) has 364 calories, 12.2 gm fiber, and 20.5 gm protein. Kala chana and Kabuli chana have similar compositions. Therefore, all the major chana types are equally beneficial to include in your weight loss regime. Moreover, according to NIH-published research, Chana has an ultra-low glycemic index, which is also beneficial for weight loss.

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Chana for Weight Loss

Now, it’s time to answer the question, Is chana good for weight loss? The answer is a big yes. Chana, including kala chana, desi chana, and kabuli chana, is equally good for weight loss. There are multiple reasons behind this. Firstly, chana is low in calories, allowing you to maintain a calorie deficit, which is necessary when doing weight loss. Secondly, chana has ample dietary fiber, which helps you feel less hungry and fuller for extended hours.

Thirdly, chana is one of the best sources of vegetarian protein and healthy fat. Moreover, it has a good mix of micronutrients like potassium, zinc, phosphorus, magnesium, folate, vitamin C, etc. These nutrients help maintain body metabolism, especially when cutting calories for weight loss. Therefore, chana is good for weight loss diets when included, as it fulfils your nutritional requirements and is not high in calorie count.

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Desi, Kabuli and Black Chana Weight Loss Benefits

Chana, including all its types, carries immense benefits when doing weight loss. Here are some major chana weight loss benefits:

High in Protein and Fiber

Chana helps in weight loss as its an excellent source of plant-based protein and fiber. According to the U.S. Health Dept. PMC website, it is clinically proven that meals rich in protein promote weight loss. Protein helps curb cravings and prevent overeating. Fiber aids in smooth digestion and promotes satiety. According to an NIH-published study, consuming fiber during weight loss can boost the process. Both nutrients help you consume fewer calories overall.

Low in Calories

Despite being nutrient-dense, chana is relatively low in calories. According to USDA data, one hundred grams of cooked or boiled chickpeas contains around 164 calories. Therefore, boiled chana for weight loss makes them a great addition to a calorie-controlled diet. Also, boiled chana is good for weight loss as it can make good snacking meals between heavy meals like lunch and dinner.

Supports Metabolism

All chana types, including black chana good for weight loss as they have a decent presence of iron. Micronutrients like iron have a role in the transportation of oxygen to cells, increasing body metabolism. A higher metabolism enables you to burn more effectively.

Regulates Blood Sugar

The combination of protein, fiber, and complex carbohydrates in chana helps regulate blood sugar levels. This can prevent energy level fluctuations and cravings, which are primal in unhealthy snacking.

Full of Antioxidants

Black chana is good for weight loss as it contains decent amounts of antioxidants, including flavonoids. Flavonoids lessen inflammation in the body, which is beneficial for health. Studies conducted by PubMed Central have shown that flavonoids like catechins and isoflavones help promote weight loss.

Promotes Feeling of Fullness

The high protein and fiber content in chana can contribute to a feeling of fullness and satiety, thus helping in the process of weight loss.

Versatile and Nutritious

Chana like Kabuli, Black and White chana is good for weight loss as they can be incorporated into wide array of dishes, from curries and salads to soups and snacks. This versatility ensures you don’t get bored while adhering to a weight loss diet plan.

Supports Gut Health

Chana is a good source of prebiotics, which nourish the beneficial bacteria in your gut. A healthy gut can aid in better nutrient absorption, digestion, and overall weight management.

Low in Fat

Chana for weight loss is naturally low in fat, particularly saturated fat. According to a comparative study published in the National Library of Medicine, replacing foods rich in saturated fats with food like chana, which is rich in unsaturated and low fat, helps lessen the risk of heart ailments. Heart ailments are closely related to obesity and overweight.

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Kala Chana Weight Loss Recipes

Kala Chana Weight Loss Recipes

Here are some top chana recipe for weight loss, which are less on calories and high on taste.

Chana Masala

  • Sauté chickpeas with tomatoes, onions, ginger, garlic, and Indian spices like cumin, coriander, and chili powder.
  • Serve with whole wheat roti or brown rice for a protein-packed, fiber-rich meal.

Chana Chaat

  • Mix boiled chickpeas with diced tomatoes, onions, coriander, lemon juice, and spices like cumin powder and chaat masala.
  • A low-calorie, high-fiber snack or light meal.

Chana Dal

  • Cook split chickpeas (chana dal) with tomatoes, onions, and spices like cumin, coriander, and garam masala.
  • A protein and fiber-rich vegetarian dish that can be served with whole wheat roti or brown rice.

Chana Salad

  • Mix boiled chickpeas with diced vegetables like cucumber, tomatoes, and onions.
  • Dress with lemon juice, olive oil, and spices like cumin powder and chaat masala.
  • A filling, nutrient-dense salad option.

Chana Pakora

  • Make a batter with chickpea flour (besan), spices, and minimal oil. (Using air frying is better)
  • Fry chickpea fritters and serve with mint-coriander chutney.
  • A healthier alternative to deep-fried snacks.

Chana Masala Stuffed Bell Peppers

  • Prepare chana masala and stuff it into bell peppers.
  • Bake or grill the stuffed peppers for a low-calorie, protein-rich meal.

Chana Sprouts Salad

  • Sprout chickpeas and mix them with diced vegetables, lemon juice, and spices.
  • A nutrient-dense, low-calorie salad option.

Chana Dosa (Chickpea Lentil Crepes)

  • Make a batter with chickpea flour (besan), rice flour, and spices.
  • Prepare dosas (savory crepes) and serve with chutney or sambar.
  • A protein-rich, gluten-free option.

These recipes incorporate chana in various forms, providing a range of flavors and textures while being mindful of portion sizes and calorie counts.

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As you embark on this healthful journey of weight loss, remember that this healthy chana can be your powerful ally. Embrace its versatility, savor its flavors, and let its nutritional prowess nourish your body and soul. So, bid farewell to fancy diets and embrace the goodness of this unassuming legume. Let it be the cornerstone of your transformative journey, guiding you towards a life of vitality, balance, and lasting fulfillment – one delicious bite at a time.

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FAQ’s (Frequently Asked Questions)

Does boiling chana reduce protein?

Comparing the nutritional profiles of boiled and raw chana, we find that there is a reduction in nutrients and calories. According to the USDA, raw chana has around 378 calories and 20.5 grams of protein, whereas boiled chana has 164 calories and 8.86 grams of protein.

How much chana should I eat per day?

Doctors/dieticians recommend consuming not more than 100 grams of chana daily, whether roasted or in curry form. Overeating chana can cause potential side effects and breach your daily calorie limit.

Does chana have high calories?

No, chana doesn’t have high calories. According to the USDA, 100 grams of raw chana contains only 364 calories. This may look heavy, but on average, we only consume 40 to 50 grams of chana in roasted or curry form. Also, cooking chana reduces its calories a bit.

Last Updated on by Dr. Damanjit Duggal 


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