NOTICE: We are experiencing technical issues with Academy members trying to log into the JAND site using Academy member login credentials. We are working to resolve the issue as soon as possible. Alternatively, if you are an Academy member, you can access the JAND site by registering for an Elsevier account and claiming access using the links at the top of the JAND site. Email us at [email protected] for assistance. Thanks for your patience!

Chickpeas May Influence Fatty Acid and Fiber Intake in an Ad Libitum Diet, Leading to Small Improvements in Serum Lipid Profile and Glycemic Control


      Optimal replacement macronutrient/s for dietary saturated fat to reduce cardiovascular disease risk remains controversial. Chickpeas are rich in dietary fiber and polyunsaturated fatty acids. This exploratory study, conducted from September 2004 to May 2005, assessed the effect of incorporating chickpeas in the ad libitum diet of 45 free-living adults. Participants consumed a minimum of 728 g of canned, drained chickpeas per week (the amount in four 300-g cans) as part of their habitual diet for 12 weeks (chickpea phase), followed by 4 weeks of habitual diet without chickpeas (usual phase). In the chickpea phase, mean dietary fiber intake was 6.77 g/day more and mean polyunsaturated fatty acid consumption (as a percentage of total fat) was 2.66% more (both P<0.001), causing the polyunsaturated to saturated fatty acids ratio to change from 0.39 to 0.47 (P=0.045). Serum total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol were 7.7 mg/dL (0.20 mmol/L) and 7.3 mg/dL (0.19 mmol/L) less, respectively, after the chickpea phase (P≤0.01), fasting insulin was 0.75 μIU/mL (5.21 pmol/L) less (P=0.045), and the homeostasis assessment model of insulin resistance was 0.21 less (P=0.01). Univariate analysis revealed that dietary fiber had the greatest single effect, reducing serum total cholesterol by 15.8 mg/dL (0.41 mmol/L) (P=0.01). Polyunsaturated and saturated fatty acids had equivalent but opposing effects on serum total cholesterol and insulin. Larger studies on populations with greater degrees of hypercholesterolemia and/or hyperglycemia than the participants in this study are warranted.
      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'


      Subscribe to Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect


        • Menotti A.
        Diet, cholesterol and coronary heart disease: A perspective.
        Acta Cardiol. 1999; 54: 169-172
        • Schaefer E.J.
        Lipoproteins, nutrition, and heart disease.
        Am J Clin Nutr. 2002; 75: 191-212
        • Hu F.B.
        • Willett W.C.
        Optimal diets for prevention of coronary heart disease.
        JAMA. 2002; 288: 2569-2578
        • AIHW
        Heart, stroke and vascular diseases—Australian facts 2004.
        Australian Institute of Health and Welfare and National Heart Foundation of Australia, Canberra, Australia2004 (AIHW Cat. No. CVD 27)
        • USDA
        National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference. US Department of Agriculture and Agricultural Research Service Web site. Release 19, 2006.
        (Updated June 18, 2007. Accessed June 14, 2007)
        • Williams P.C.
        • Singh U.
        Nutritional quality and the evaluation of quality in breeding programs.
        in: Saxena M.C. Singh K.B. The Chickpea. CAB. International, Wallingford, UK1987: 329-356
        • Nestel P.
        • Cehun M.
        • Chronopoulos A.
        Effects of long-term consumption and single meals of chickpeas on plasma glucose, insulin, and triacylglycerol concentrations.
        Am J Clin Nutr. 2004; 79: 390-395
        • Guillon F.
        • Champ M.M.
        Carbohydrate fractions of legumes: Uses in human nutrition and potential for health.
        Br J Nutr. 2002; 88: S293-S306
        • Grains Research Development Corporation
        Dietary Fibre and Resistant Starch.
        (Accessed August 11, 2002)
        • Petterson D.S.
        • Sipsas S.
        • Mackintosh J.B.
        Chickpea (Cicer arietinum).
        in: 2nd ed. Grain Research and Development Corporation, Canberra, Australia1997: 13-14
        • Sharma R.D.
        Isoflavone content of Bengalgram (Cicer arietinum) at various stages of germination.
        J Plant Food. 1981; 3: 259-264
        • Siddiqui M.T.
        • Siddiqi M.
        Hypolipidemic principles of Cicer arietinum: Biochanin-A and formononetin.
        Lipids. 1976; 11: 243-246
        • Pittaway J.K.
        • Ahuja K.D.
        • Cehun M.
        • Chronopoulos A.
        • Robertson I.K.
        • Nestel P.J.
        • Ball M.J.
        Dietary supplementation with chickpeas for at least five weeks results in small but significant reductions in serum total and low-density lipoprotein cholesterols in adult women and men.
        Ann Nutr Metab. 2006; 50: 512-518
        • USDA
        National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference. US Department of Agriculture and Agricultural Research Service Web site. Release 17, 2004.
        (Accessed July 2005)
      1. Cholesterol and Triglycerides Reagent.
        Thermo Electron Corporation, Louisville, CO2004
      2. Infinity HDL Cholesterol Automated Reagent.
        Thermo Electron Corporation, Louisville, CO2005
      3. Glucose Reagent: Hexokinase Method.
        Thermo Electron Corporation, Louisville, CO2004
        • Friedewald W.
        • Levy R.
        • Fredrickson D.
        Estimation of the concentration of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol in plasma, without use of the preparative ultracentrifuge.
        Clin Chem. 1972; 18: 499-502
        • Matthews D.R.
        • Hosker J.P.
        • Rudenski A.S.
        • Naylor B.A.
        • Treacher D.F.
        • Turner R.C.
        Homeostasis model assessment: Insulin resistance and beta-cell function from fasting plasma glucose and insulin concentrations in man.
        Diabetologia. 1985; 28: 412-419
        • Ashton E.
        • Ball M.
        Effects of soy as tofu vs meat on lipoprotein concentrations.
        Eur J Clin Nutr. 2000; 54: 14-19
        • Jenkins D.J.
        • Kendall C.W.
        • Popovich D.G.
        • Vidgen E.
        • Mehling C.C.
        • Vuksan V.
        • Ransom T.P.
        • Rao A.V.
        • Rosenberg-Zand R.
        • Tariq N.
        • Corey P.
        • Jones P.J.
        • Raeini M.
        • Story J.A.
        • Furumoto E.J.
        • Illingworth D.R.
        • Pappu A.S.
        • Connelly P.W.
        Effect of a very-high-fiber vegetable, fruit, and nut diet on serum lipids and colonic function.
        Metabolism. 2001; 50: 494-503
        • Champ M.
        • Langkilde A.M.
        • Brouns F.
        • Kettlitz B.
        • Collet Y.L.
        Advances in dietary fibre characterisation 1: Definition of dietary fibre, physiological relevance, health benefits and analytical aspects.
        Nutr Res Rev. 2003; 16: 71-82
        • Rimm E.B.
        • Ascherio A.
        • Giovannucci E.
        • Spiegelman D.
        • Stampfer M.J.
        • Willett W.C.
        Vegetable, fruit, and cereal fiber intake and risk of coronary heart disease among men.
        JAMA. 1996; 275: 447-451
        • Vessby B.
        Dietary fat and insulin action in humans.
        Br J Nutr. 2000; 83: S91-S96
        • Storlien L.H.
        • Higgins J.A.
        • Thomas T.C.
        • Brown M.A.
        • Wang H.Q.
        • Huang X.F.
        • Else P.L.
        Diet composition and insulin action in animal models.
        Br J Nutr. 2000; 83: S85-S90
        • Wijendran V.
        • Hayes K.C.
        Dietary n-6 and n-3 fatty acid balance and cardiovascular health.
        Annu Rev Nutr. 2004; 24: 597-615
        • Hung T.
        • Sievenpiper J.L.
        • Marchie A.
        • Kendall C.W.
        • Jenkins D.J.
        Fat versus carbohydrate in insulin resistance, obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
        Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2003; 6: 165-176
        • Lavigne C.
        • Marette A.
        • Jacques H.
        Cod and soy proteins compared with casein improve glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity in rats.
        Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2000; 278: E491-E500


      J. K. Pittaway is the study administrator, M. J. Ball is the principle researcher and head, and I. K. Robertson is the consultant biostatistician, all at the School of Human Life Sciences, University of Tasmania, Launceston, Tasmania, Australia.