Last month's investigation into the metabolic effects of chickpea fiber showed that the nutritional powerhouse offers even greater benefits to the intestinal flora that we all want more of: Bifidobacterium. One of the key attributes to chickpeas is a unique type of fermentable fiber known as alpha-galactooligosccharide or alpha GOS. This fermentable fiber demonstrated consistent increases in butyrate production and had a number of favorable effects on a variety of biomarkers such as triglyceride, serum glucose, insulin, and glycated proteins that reflect processes such as insulin sensitivity and inflammation. While most fermentable fibers offer at least some benefit, more research is supporting the importance of fiber synergy as to offer food sources to multiple families of critical bacteria. This has led to a greater level of appreciation for the fiber found in whole plants as opposed to the types that are often added to fortified foods. None of the fiber found in Functional Formularies formulas is added; it is all naturally occurring in our organic, whole food ingredients.

Chickpeas have already been identified as a great source of many nutrients and populations in the UK, for instance, who eat them regularly, tend to have better nutritional status and are healthier all around (2). It is important to note that chickpeas need to be thoroughly soaked and fully cooked. The chickpeas that we cook and that form part of the foundation to Liquid Hope and Nourish formulas, are extensively softened and cooked to prevent any anti-nutrient activity.

~ John Bagnulo MPH, PhD.

Dai Z et al. Effects of α-Galactooligosaccharides from Chickpeas on High-Fat-Diet-Induced Metabolic Syndrome in Mice. Journal of Agriculture and Food
Chemistry 2017. April 19;65(15):3160-3166.

Wallace TC, Murray R, Zelman KM. The Nutritional Value and Health Benefits of Chickpeas and Hummus. Nutrients. 2016;8(12):766.

Jukanti AK et al. Nutritional quality and health benefits of chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.): a review. British Journal of Nutrition. 2012 August;108:1:S11-26.