Chickpeas and Fertility

A patient came in recently with recommendations from another doctor. These recommendations included avoidance of chickpeas. This was a surprise to me as I believed legumes in general to be supportive of fertility.

chickpeas

So off I went to do my research. Long and behold I found a study concluding that chickpeas were in fact estrogenic.

If I had stopped there, I would believe that this estrogenic activity could have a negative impact for our fertility patients. Or even recommend them for patients with a thin lining.

But I didn’t stop there. I read the entire research paper.

It said that when rats were fed 50-100mg of the isoflavones extracted from chickpea sprouts, significant estrogenic effects were observed.

A 540ml can of chickpeas is about 410g. In 100g of chickpeas, you’ll get about 10mg of isoflavones. So a can of chickpeas has about 40mg of isoflavones.

Take home message? An entire can of chickpeas does not have a dose high enough to create these effects.

The average Canadian women is 70kg. She would need to consume 3500mg of these isoflavones to have these estrogenic effects and she would have to consume it daily for at least a month. That would be 87 cans of chickpeas.

By all means ladies, continue to enjoy your chickpeas! And remember, just because they cite a research paper, doesn’t mean that it’s sound advice. Check into things for yourself.

Yours in Health,

Dr. Kerri Fullerton ND & Dr. Whitney Young ND