Chickpeas, also known as Kabuli chana, are great for your baby. It belongs to the legume family and is a good source of various important nutrients.
If you are planning to introduce chickpeas to your baby, it is recommended you wait till your child is around 8 to 10 months of age. Also, before you start your baby on chickpeas, do consult with your doctor. Chickpeas can sometimes cause gas and digestion problem in babies. So in case you notice any flatulence issues in your baby do not worry.
You can make chickpeas puree to create a smooth texture for your baby to digest easily. Its delicate flavor makes it ideal for adding into various dishes.
10 Benefits Of Chickpeas For Babies:
Chickpeas are high in nutrients which helps your baby in development. If your little one cannot digest it easily, you can smash the seeds and feed them. A cupful of chickpeas contains the following benefits for your baby:
- Rich source of folate, iron, zinc, protein, manganese and calcium (equivalent to a cup of milk)
- Strengthens immune system
- Prevents weakness and anemia
- Helps the body to function properly
- Boosts hair growth
- Improves concentration
- Help build strong bones
- Good source of polyunsaturated fats
- Acts as a laxative
- Has immune boosting benefits
[ Read : Buckwheat For Babies ]
Effects Of Consuming Chickpeas For Baby:
Here are some effects of chickpeas which you must be aware of.
- Chickpeas And Gas In Babies: There are many healthy food items which can cause gas in your baby’s stomach, chickpeas are one of them. This is normal, but if you feel it is causing excess discomfort to your baby, doctor consult is recommended.
- Chickpeas Allergies: If your baby is suffering from G6PD deficiency (glucose 6 phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency) it may not be appropriate to give chickpeas. Also, if there is a family history of such allergy, it is recommended to avoid giving the same. Do consult your doctor to check whether your baby is allergic to soy or lentils.
[ Read : Arrowroot For Babies ]
7 Easy Chickpeas Cooking Tips:
You can get chickpeas easily in the store. For your baby, pre-cooked or roasted chickpeas are not a good idea as it contains high sodium and oil.
- Roasted chickpeas have very less shell life. It is better you store uncooked ones for a longer duration.
- Remember to rinse them well under running water before cooking.
- Always cook fresh chickpeas and store them in the refrigerator if there is any leftover. This way you can avoid fermentation which happens as soon as thawing begins.
- One cup of dried uncooked chickpeas will yield about 2 cups cooked. So be careful about the quantity if you are making it for the first time.
- When you introduce it to your baby for the first time, take only a handful of chickpeas as it could be heavy for your baby. With time you can increase the amount.
- If you are adding salt, lime or tomato paste in it, add it at the end of the cooking. Otherwise the chickpeas will turn hard.
- Do not add baking soda to soften the seeds. It adds an unnecessary amount of sodium to your baby’s food.
[ Read : Barley For Babies ]
Chickpeas are extremely simple to prepare. It can be cooked all year round. You can add them in soup, curries or even in salads. All the cooking methods required soaking it in water overnight. Be assured as this does not destroy its fiber and protein content.
Teaching your baby to eat healthy is something you should aim for right from the start. Be their role model and eat healthy yourself. Your child will soon learn from you.
[ Read : Beet For Baby ]
Have you tried feeding chickpeas to your baby? Do let us know any special chickpea recipes for babies and how your baby enjoyed this nutritional meal.
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