It is no news that Hummus has become extremely popular across the world for years now. By 2012, as reported by The New York Times, the hummus industry in the United States alone grew to an industry totaling $530 million at food retailers from just a $5 million dollar business 15 years earlier.
"The savory dip is just irresistible," says the HuffPost. However, there is way more to the Hummus that its delicious taste and enjoyable texture. These "more" are what brought the nutritionists around the world to highly recommend it, and so many people to consume it regularly.
#1 Hummus helps balance your cholesterol levels
Hummus' main component, the chickpeas, carries nutrients that help lower cholesterol, according to an Australian study at the University of Tasmania's School of Human Life Sciences.
Plus, make sure you use extra-virgin olive oil that can also help to balance cholesterol, fight oxidation, and reduce inflammation.
#2 Hummus Reduces Allergic Reactions
Hummus is gluten-free, so no risk of related allergies, and it is also lactose-free since it contains no dairy. So, if you suffer from any of these, hummus should be on your regular menu at home because of the many health benefits it provides you.
#3 Hummus has cancer-preventing properties
Chickpeas contain saponins, protease inhibitors, and phytic acid; all which have shown in tests "to guard cells against the kind of damage that can cause cancer."
The folate in hummus plays a significant role in cancer prevention, according to a comprehensive study around the Folate by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition:
"Epidemiologic evidence consistently shows inverse associations between higher intakes of dietary folate and a reduced risk of cancer of the colon, of other parts of the gastrointestinal tract, and, more recently, of the pancreas."
#4 Hummus' nutrients help with weight management
Hummus is very rich in protein, which helps fight cravings and excessive snacking, and balance blood sugar levels, according to nutritionists. In addition to that, the iron content in hummus boosts your energy, which could probably lead you to more physical exercises.
In addition to that, the Tahini, which is the other main component of the Hummus contains a fair amount of monounsaturated fats that help promote weight loss and reduce belly fat.
#5 The Tahini in the hummus is super healthy!
In addition to the benefit mentioned above, the monounsaturated fats in the Tahini, as shown in numerous studies, decrease risks of breast cancer, reduce cholesterol levels, lower risk of heart disease and stroke, promote weight loss, and lessen severe pain and stiffness of rheumatoid arthritis.
That's in addition to many other health benefits the Tahini offers.
#6 Hummus promotes healthy skin and hair
The omega-3 fatty acids in the hummus promote radiant skin and hair growth, while the manganese in chickpeas helps prevent sagging skin and hair loss, and the zinc mineral in hummus is said to delay aging for being an antioxidant.
Have doubts? Just go on for a week or so eating homemade hummus every day. Nothing to lose, all to gain. Who could say no to more hummus!
#7 Hummus helps alleviate Anemia
How about that! Both the chickpeas and the Tahini are good sources of iron, a mineral that helps to deliver oxygen to red blood cells. Hummus, my friends, helps relieve iron deficiency in the body!
#8 Hummus strengthens bones and teeth
An excellent marriage that delicious coupling of chickpeas and tahini! Both contain calcium and minerals, such as zinc, selenium, copper, magnesium, and phosphorus; all of which improve bone density.
So, hummus, being rich in these minerals, does help prevent osteoporosis and age-brittle bones, and make your teeth strong.
#9 Hummus helps fight oxidants in your body
With all the pollution our body takes in from polluted air, spoiled liquids, chemicals in hair and cleaning products, etc, we do want to consider a good and healthy antioxidant on a regular basis.
In that, Hummus could be our loving friend. The chickpeas have plenty of antioxidants that could help our body recuperates from oxidant damages done to our bodies.
#10 Hummus can improve muscle health
Chickpeas are loaded with amino acids, which make the proteins that are essential for building or repairing healthy tissues and building and strengthening our muscular system.
That richness in protein makes the hummus a good friend of our muscles, as well as our bones, blood, and skin. It promotes strong and healthy muscles, hence the reason why athletes and bodybuilders take plenty of protein supplements.
While not all of us are athletes, we still need a good intake of protein for our muscles to remain healthy or to improve them in case of deficiency. That is especially true for our friends the vegetarians and the vegans.
#11 Hummus is your Digestive System's friend
We get to say it because it must be said: Constipation, especially regular, is a painful issue with not less painful consequences, from stomach issues to migraine and irritated nerves.
Hummus with its high fiber content can help improve your digestion and maintain your digestive tract regular.
That high fiber content is also helpful in preventing heart disease. So, here is your hummus, a yummy and efficient means to intake more fiber, and ease it on your digestive system!
#12 Hummus is a super delicious superfood!
It is super delicious; that, we all knew. And now you know that it is a superfood, as long as you don't substitute the chickpeas with something else like we've been seeing around in supermarkets and blogs.
Once you do, it has nothing to do with Hummus; because, hummus, my friends, means literally chickpeas in Arabic, and that's the only reason why this dish is called hummus.
This article is by no means a substitute for any medical advice. If you have a health issue, please consult your doctor.
We Lebanese belong to a long-existing culture where natural remedies are passed on from generation to generation, from grandma's Yansoun tea to calm the stress, dad's Mint tea to digest a heavy meal, the Pomegranate Molasses to heal a cold sore, and you name it. Yet, we still go consult our doctors for any health issue.
It helps though that our cuisine is known, worldwide now, to be generally very healthy, and studies across the world are recommending it, along with the Mediterranean cuisines, to prevent health issues.
Huffpost reported in 2014 that "according to a study in The New England Journal of Medicine, about 30 percent of heart attacks, strokes, and deaths from heart disease can be prevented in people who are at high risk if they switch to the Mediterranean diet."
So? Hummus, anyone?