Did you know that most Middle Eastern ingredients offer a plethora of benefits? Read on below to discover some of the most popular ingredients you can use to prepare delectable Middle Eastern dishes. 

Olive Oil 

Monounsaturated fats in olive oil like oleic acid play an essential role in the prevention of chronic diseases like coronary heart disease or CHD and reduction of mortality rate. These monounsaturated fats can lower the blood’s cholesterol levels and increase HDL or high-density lipoprotein. 

HDL is very critical in the process of removal of cholesterol from artery walls on the liver which can be disposed of, explaining a connection between the consumption of olive oil and the lower CHD incidence.

Olives are also rich in phenolic compounds, with extra virgin olive oil specifically containing hydroxytyrosol that protects against oxidative species responsible for causing mutation or damage to DNA.

It has been revealed that a Mediterranean diet supplemented with extra-virgin olive oil can lower the risks of stroke, developing myocardial infarction, or cardiovascular death.


Many Lebanese dishes like mudardara, mujadara, and fasoliya contain a low glycemic index or GI ingredients. These include chickpeas, beans, and lentils which are staples in the Lebanese diet and are important as well for appetite regulation. Such foods are complex carbohydrates, indicating that these have high fiber content. Fiber plays a significant role in the control of blood fat levels and the reduction of cholesterol levels.

The GI is a figure representing how much food can increase blood glucose levels, with low glycemic index foods usually being the healthiest options since these don’t ignite a spike in blood glucose with a steady energy release that creates longer effects on the body.

Chickpeas and Hummus 

Chickpeas are believed to have originated from the Middle East because of the region’s climate and temperature. Legumes like chickpeas have a nutrient profile overlapping with both vegetables and proteins and are among the primary protein sources in a vegan or vegetarian diet. However, legumes don’t contain all the amino acids found in animal sources, which means these should be consumed together with whole-grain products to create a diet containing all the essential amino acids.

Meanwhile, hummus is a traditional dip in the Middle East made from chickpeas mixed with lemon juice, tahini sauce, olive oil, and garlic, and is now commonly eaten in different parts of the world. Hummus is rich in dietary fiber, protein, and polyunsaturated fatty acids with a low glycemic index. Hummus can also lower levels of blood glucose.

Legumes can help increase nutrients in the diet. Consumption of more chickpeas means higher fiber intake. To achieve healthy weight management, a diet must have high fiber content, and low energy density and include foods with a low glycemic index

Take advantage of these Middle Eastern ingredients by shopping for them at https://getbakkal.com/middle-eastern-market-san-francisco/. Be sure to pick only the healthiest ingredients when preparing your next Middle Eastern cuisines so you can expect not only foods that will satisfy your taste buds but will also support your well-being.

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