Chickpea vs Soybean - Health impact and Nutrition Comparison
Soybean and chickpea are two of the most used and healthiest legumes. But which one to choose if the question concerns nutrition and health impact? In this article, we will compare soybean and chickpea nutritional aspects. Soybean has an undesirable taste, usually, it is bitter, astringent, and rough. Chickpea has a nutty flavor and creamy taste.
The soybean is an erect branching plant that belongs to the Glycine family. Soybean originates in Northern China. The plant can reach more than 2 meters in height. Seeds can be yellow, green, brown, and black. There are different soybean types of which the most common types are Agate Soybean, Aoyu Soybean, and Butterbean Soybean. Chickpea belongs to the Fabaceae family and is considered one of the earliest cultivated legumes in the Middle East. The most common types are Desi Chickpea and Amethyst Chickpea.
Soybean is largely used in making soy oil and for the animal feed industry. In culinary, soybean is used in making sauce, soy milk, tofu, soy flour, and so on. Overall, in southern Europe and Latin America chickpeas are the most used ingredients in soups and salads. The most known dishes are falafel, rancho, cecina, etc.
Soybean and chickpea are filled with essential nutrients. At the bottom of this page, you can find a nutrition infographic, which will help you to understand the differences in the nutrition of these legumes.
Soybean is richer in protein, fats, and contains fewer sugars. On the other hand, chickpea contains more fiber and carbs than soybean. Both legumes contain no cholesterol.
Soybean is richer in minerals than chickpeas. It has 2 times more magnesium, 2 times more iron, and 3 times more calcium than a chickpea. The amounts of zinc, phosphorus, potassium, and copper are also higher in this legume. Moreover, soybean has a lower sodium level than a chickpea.
Soybean and chickpea are packed with different vitamins in different amounts. Soybean is a great source of Vitamin C and Vitamin B1. Also, the amounts of Vitamin B2 and Vitamin K are 4 times higher in soybean. On the other hand, chickpea has more Vitamin A, Vitamin B5, Folate, and Vitamin B6 than soybean. Both contain equal levels of Vitamin E and Vitamin B3 and have no Vitamin B12 and Vitamin D.
Overall, soybeans have more calories than chickpeas. It has 446 calories per 100 g, while chickpea has 378 calories per 100 g.
Soybean is lower in the glycemic index than a chickpea. It has a GI equal to 14, whereas a GI of chickpea is equal to 36. Both are considered low glycemic index food .
On average, soybean has a pH equal to 4.7 (alkaline), whereas chickpea has a pH equal to 1.5 (acidic). This means that chickpeas may have a higher risk for reflux symptoms.
Based on the 38 studies, soy intake of 47 grams per day was linked to a 9.3% decrease in total cholesterol and a 13% decrease in LDL cholesterol. Moreover, soybean is a great source of fiber that has cholesterol-lowering effects . On the other hand, chickpea contains soluble fiber, which may help to reduce triglyceride and LDL cholesterol levels and lower the risk of heart diseases .
Soybean has compounds that can be extremely beneficial for diabetics. According to the study, soybean is rich in bioactive compounds known as isoflavones. These compounds are associated with lowering the risk of diabetes and heart diseases. It may help to improve tolerance for blood sugar by improving insulin sensitivity .
Chickpeas, on the other hand, contain good amounts of protein and fiber, which may help to prevent blood sugar levels from rising after you eat. This is an important factor in diabetes management .
Overall, legumes are rich in fiber and protein, compounds that have lowering effects on appetite.
According to one study, people who consumed chickpeas daily were half less likely to be obese, also they had a lower body mass index .
Soybeans, in turn, contain isoflavones and soy fiber, which may reduce body weight and fat by lowering triglycerides and cholesterol. However, more human studies are needed .
The high amounts of protein and antioxidants in soybean can work great against cancer and prevent the growth of cancer cells in the body. According to the study, soybean may help breast cancer patients to recuperate well. Also, this legume is a great source of dietary fiber, which may help lower the risk of colon cancer .
Eating chickpeas can promote the production of butyrate, which can potentially reduce inflammation in the colon cells and by that reduce the risk of colon cancer. Chickpeas besides butyrate, have other compounds, such as lycopene and saponins which can play an against-cancer role in the body .
Both soybean and chickpea contain soluble fiber which may help increase the number of healthy bacteria in your gut and slow down the growth of unhealthy bacteria. This can help to reduce the risk of some digestive conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome and colon cancer .
Research suggests, 104 grams daily intake of chickpea may improve bowel function, including softer stool consistency .
Legumes contain calcium, magnesium, fiber, and other nutrients which have beneficial effects on bone health management. Some research suggests that daily intakes of 40–110 mg of soy isoflavones can improve markers of bone health in menopausal women. Nevertheless, more research is needed .
Soybeans may be possibly unsafe if used in large amounts when pregnant. Higher doses during pregnancy can harm the development of the baby. Besides, soy milk can be unsafe when used as an alternative to cow's milk in children who are allergic to cow's milk .
Chickpea can cause an IgE-mediated hypersensitivity reaction that ranges from rhinitis to anaphylaxis. The symptoms commonly include redness, rashes, hives, and inflammation. Allergy to soybeans is a common food allergy. Symptoms commonly include hives or itching in and around the mouth .
Soybeans are richer in minerals and vitamins than chickpeas. It contains 4 times more Vitamin B2 and Vitamin K, also 3 times more calcium than a chickpea. Chickpea, on the other hand, contains more Vitamin A, Vitamin B5, fiber, and carbs than soybean.
Vitamin and Mineral Summary Scores
Comparison summary table
|Lower in Sugar|
|Lower in Sodium|
|Lower in glycemic index|
|Rich in minerals|
|Lower in Saturated Fat|
|Lower in price|
|Lower in Cholesterol||Equal|
|Rich in vitamins||Equal|
Which food is preferable for your diet?
|Low Calories diet|
|Low Fats diet|
|Low Carbs diet|
|Low glycemic index diet|
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All nutrients comparison - raw data values