Peas (Pisum Sativum) are one of the world’s oldest crops. The gathering of wild, whole peas for use in food dates as far back as 9750 B.C in Southeast Asia. Peas have been consumed in dry form throughout much of early history, but didn’t become popular as a fresh food until chanfes in cultivation techniques in the 16th century.
Split yellow peas belong to the sane family as lentils and are highly nutritious-high in both protein and fiber. A half-cup servingof cooked split peas (cup dry) provides 110 calories, 110 grams of protein (20 % of the daily value), less than one gram of fat and 12 grams of dietary fiber. That’s almost half the daily value of 25 gramsof fiber, which most people don’t get daily!
Most vegetables are low in protein, sos peas make an excellent source of protein for everyone, especially growing children, vegeterians and vegans. Peas prove all the essential amino acids needed for growth and repair of the daily wear and tear of our body tissues-as well as all three branched chain amino acids which are utilized for energy and for muscle building. Peas are a known source of tryptophan, an important amino acid used by the body to make neurotransmitters such as serotonin, which helps regulate appetite and improves mood. Soluble fiber in peas offers numerous health benefits, including delaying the emptying of the stomach contents and enhancing the feelings of “fullness” which prevents hunger and aids with weight management. Soluble fiber also helps to reduce blood lipids such as LDL cholesterol. Likewise, soluble fiber helps to stabilize blood sugar levels. The insoluble fiber in peas are gut helathy, traveling through the digestive system intact and increasing stool bulk-helping to prevent constipation and to promote regularity.
In short, legumes such as dried peas can be beneficial in the diet to help balance blood sugar levels, while providing steady, slow-burning energy.
Here’s another pea perk: Yellow split peas are a source of B vitamins, providing 0.18 milligrams of thiamine (vitamin B1), per half-cupserving (12 % Daily Value) and 64 micrograms of folate (6% DV). Thiamine, vital for energy metabolism, converts foods you eat into energy for your cells, while supporting proper nervous system function. Folate contributes to heart health, enhances immune system function, prevents birth defects, forms red blood cells and more.
Like beans, split peas are a mineral-dense food, providing about 10% DV for iron, which is needed for healthy blood, making it a good iron food source for vegeterians. Other minerals in peas, such as phosphorus-along with calcium-are needed for strong, healthy bones and teeth. Split peas are also a good food source for important trace minerals such as molybdenum and manganese, which are involved in important metabolic reactions in the body.
Yellow split peas can be used in a wide variety of ways-wholesome delicious soups, salads, dahls, curries, casseroles and meatless patties. They cook quickly without the need for soaking.