Pea microgreens have high levels of the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin. These carotenoids help prevent age-related macular degeneration and cataracts by protecting the eyes from harmful ultraviolet rays. Pea microgreens provide many other nutrients and vitamins!
Vitamin A – Carotenoids
Pea shoots contain carotenoids, including beta carotene, which is also known as Vitamin A.
Carotenoids are fat-soluble antioxidants that have anti-cancer properties by preventing damage to cellular structures. Research strongly suggests that consuming carotenoid-rich foods reduces the incidence of cancers and diseases associated with reduced immune function, cardiovascular disease, and other degenerative disorders.
Pea shoots contain about 15% of the percent daily value (DV) of vitamin A. This is approximately four times more vitamin A than tomatoes.
The Vitamin B Suite
Pea microgreens are also a rich source of folate (B9), which plays a key role in developing and maintaining the body’s cells and protecting against DNA damage. Pea shoots contain approximately eight times more folate than bean sprouts.
This is about 43% of the DV
As far as the other B vitamins, below is a list of the percent of the DV a cup of pea microgreens provides:
- B1 – Thiamin – 23%
- B2 – Riboflavin – 14%
- B3 – Niacin – 23%
- B5 – 25%
- B6 – 19%
- B9 – Foliate – 43%
Vitamin C is a key contributor for the development, growth, and repair of all cells and tissues in the body.
Pea shoots are extremely rich in vitamin C, supplying about 20 % of an adult’s DA. Vitamin C is key in maintaining bones and teeth, proper functioning of the immune system, absorption of iron, wound repair, and many other key bodily functions.
Pea shoots contain the same amount of vitamin C as blueberries. Although some websites report much more.
It is generally understood that calcium ensures strong bones and teeth. However, calcium is also needed for proper muscle movement, blood circulation, and neurological communication between the brain and the body.
Pea shoots are a minor contributor of calcium at only 3% of the DV. But some is better than none, especially since pea shoots provide other essential minerals.
Copper is an essential nutrient and is vital to metabolic processes, it also aids in developing and maintaining strong bones, and ensures proper neurological, musculoskeletal, and cardiovascular functioning.
It’s been estimated that up to one-quarter of North Americans may not be consuming sufficient copper in their diets.
Pea Shoots contain a whooping 36% of the DV!
Iron is an essential nutrient and plays a crucial role in hemoglobin production.
Hemoglobin transports oxygen in the blood from the lungs to the body’s tissues. As you know, red blood cells are made up of 40% hemoglobin.
Millions of red blood cells are produced each day replacing those either lost or damaged by our bodily functions.
Iron deficiency can lead to fatigue, poor immune function, poor regulation of body temperature, and cognitive impairment.
When iron deficiency remains untreated, red blood cells may drop to extremely low levels, resulting in anemia, characterized by extreme fatigue, shortness of breath, weakness, hair loss, and extreme confusion.
Yet adding one cup of pea sprouts to your daily diet will deliver 15% of the DV.
Regularly including these pea microgreens as part of a balanced daily diet can help to ensure proper iron levels.