11 Amazing Health Benefits of Cowpeas

Cowpeas health benefits includes improving digestion, supporting heart health, detoxifying the body, treating insomnia, managing diabetes, and supporting blood circulation. Other health benefits includes preventing anemia, supporting weight loss, supporting healthy skin, fighting free radicals and maintaining healthier bones.

Cowpeas have many names such as south peas, black-eyed peas, stock peas and so on with strong nutritional components. They are often considered as poor man’s food due to its humble origins. Cowpeas were just that, peas that were cultivated to feed cows. The cowpea plant can thrive in many conditions and can grow in various weather conditions.


Cowpeas were transported via ships that carried distressed slaves to the Caribbean Basin. The earliest records of cowpea use date back to Jamaica around 1675, its use in America has been dated back to 1714 around Florida. The elites of England actually considered it food just for the cows and preferred the English pea instead. George Washington imported cowpeas from Jamaica around 1797. Cowpeas eventually traveled to the southern region of America and thrived there. The weather and land were the perfect combination for cowpeas to grow.

Interesting Fact: 

Cowpeas provide a large amount of nitrogen to the soil it grows in. They act as a soil fixer for other plants and are often considered green manure.

What are Cowpeas?

Cowpea is an herbaceous legume. They have a tendency to grow in harsh weather and are extremely rich in minerals and vitamins.  Almost all parts of this plant are edible and contain vast nutrients. They are a staple in Indian cuisine and are also used to create stews in South Africa. South America boasts one of the largest cultivations of cowpeas and it is an important addition to their dad today diets.

Nutritional Value

Cowpeas are exceptionally nutritious with all the essential and fundamental ingredients that the body requires to function properly. Following is a nutritional chart that carries the amount of nutrition that cowpeas provide based on 171 grams of serving:

Nutrition Amount
Dietary fiber 11.1 g
Protein 13.22g
Carbohydrates 35.5g
Fat 0.91g
Vitamin B9 356µg
Vitamin B1 0.345mg
Vitamin B5 0.703mg
Vitamin B6 0.171mg
Choline 55.1mg
Vitamin B2 0.094mg
Iron 4.29mg
Copper 0.458mg
Phosphorus 267mg
Manganese 0.812mg
Magnesium 91mg
Zinc 2.21mg

The nutritional components are not just limited to the above-mentioned ones but cowpeas also are a good source of amino acids and phytochemicals.

11 Amazing Health Benefits of Cowpeas

11 Amazing Health Benefits of Cowpeas

1. Improve Digestion

It is a rich source of fiber and have been known to ease stomach conditions such as diarrhea and constipation. As bulking up the stool actually promotes adequate passage of feces through the intestinal tract and relieves the digestive system of unfavorable conditions. The dietary fiber also helps keep the overall digestive system in check.

2. Heart Health

Derivatives of vitamin B thiamine, riboflavin and such that are present in cowpeas have a very positive effect on heart health as it stimulates adequate blood flow and keeps the arteries and blood vessels in good shape to keep the heart performing properly.

3. Detoxify with Cowpeas

Detoxification is necessary for the body to eliminate toxins. Regular detoxification is necessary and cowpeas promote the digestion function and help regulate bowel movements to relieve the body of toxins. The vitamins and minerals present in legumes give the body the stimulation it needs to eliminate toxins.

4. Insomnia

It is rich in magnesium and tryptophan, which are very useful in calming and relaxing the body. It relax the body and mind to help sleep. Patients suffering from insomnia are often treated with doses of tryptophan and cowpeas have good amount naturally. An early dinner with cowpeas can help you sleep well.

5. Manage Diabetes

Cowpeas are rich in magnesium and it is a very important to help the body with the metabolism of carbohydrates to balance the sugar levels in the body. Regularly eating cowpeas is recommended for patients suffering from diabetes to manage its symptoms and regulate insulin in the body. This also relaxes the body and helps it sleep.

6. Blood Circulation

It is rich in nutrients and also help keep the digestive system healthy, which promotes the healthy absorption of nutrients. Cowpeas help promote circulation, which is beneficiary for the oxygenation of your vital organs. It also helps keep the blood pressure under control and prevents spikes.

7. Anemia Prevention

Iron Deficiency can have serious implications and can lead to many other diseases and in some cases can be fatal. Taking iron injections may be the answer to anemia through modern medicine, but eating well can actually make a huge difference in the level of red blood cells in the body. It provide a good amount of iron per serving, which helps the body revive its red blood cell count and negate anemia.

8. Weight Loss

Eating clean can help prevent obesity and all the other consequences attached to it. Cowpeas are low in calories and cholesterol, which is imperative for healthy weight loss along with the good amount of fiber that they contain Cowpeas is the ideal food for anyone willing to lose weight without nutrient deficiency.

9. Healthy Skin

A healthy glowing skin is often the result of adequate hydration paired with an antioxidant-rich diet. Eating right can make a world of difference, especially eating food rich in vitamin C is necessary for the health of the skin. Legumes are rich in detoxifying properties as well as are seen to be anti-inflammatory. These are attributes that contribute to a healthy glowing skin. Cowpeas are also a good source of vitamin C as 100gram serving provides 2.5mg of vitamin C, which is an essential contributor to healthy skin.

10. Fights Free Radicals

Vitamin C acts as a powerful antioxidant along with the other antioxidants present in cowpeas, they are excellent food for keeping the effects of free radicals at bay. Free radicals are often the cause of cancer and other chronic diseases. Adding cowpeas to our regular diet can be very useful in keeping you safe from terminal illness. Free radicals cause damage on a cellular level and hinder the metabolic process. Cells act abnormally and cause damage and growths which turn into cancer. Cowpeas help eliminate the chances of free radical damage and protect the body from within.

11. Healthier Bones

Bone health is necessary to keep the body functioning properly, eating a diet rich in calcium and other minerals such as iron, magnesium and manganese can make a huge difference on the maintenance of bone density.

Bottom Line

Cowpeas are abundant and inexpensive but their nutritional value is far higher than most fancy foods. They can provide a good amount of minerals and vitamins to the body. They can be added to stews, curries and also added to salads to add protein and carbohydrates.

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