When your mom told you to eat your peas, she knew what she was talking about. Peas flaunt twice the protein of most vegetables, so they're the ideal substitute for fattier protein fare, providing an excellent strategy for controlling your fat intake and keeping that waistline in check.
Green peas, like dried peas, are legumes, except they're eaten before they mature. As with all legumes, they're chock-full of nutrients and low in calories.
Their fiber, mostly insoluble, aids intestinal motility and may help lower cholesterol. Of the myriad nutrients peas provide, iron is particularly important since it's hard to find nonanimal foods with much of this blood-building nutrient.
Snow peas and other edible-podded peas don't contain the same amount of protein or nutrients green peas do. But they are rich in iron and vitamin C, which help maintain your immune system. Peas have lutein, the carotenoid with a proven record of helping to reduce the risk of age-related macular degeneration and cataracts.