5 Key Health Benefits Of Quinoa
If you are looking for a way to improve your overall health, adding quinoa to your diet is an excellent choice. Cultivated for more than 5000 years by the Incas, this pseudo-grain has enjoyed a resurgence in popularity as health conscience individuals have discovered its superior nutrition, its delicious taste, and its versatility in food dishes. Quinoa can be used as a substitute for rice, couscous, or bulgur wheat in any recipe. Below, you will find 5 key health benefits of quinoa.
1. High Protein To Carbohydrate Ratio
Quinoa contains a higher protein to carbohydrate ratio than any other grain consumed. Likewise, it has one of the highest protein densities for any plant based food. For each one-fourth cup of dry quinoa, there are approximately 6 grams of protein and 27 grams of complex carbohydrate. One-fourth cup of quinoa yields about three-quarters cup cooked quinoa. This is the perfect amount for a bed of quinoa to go with your stir-fry dinner, a hot bowl of quinoa for breakfast, or to prepare a nice quinoa salad with vegetables for lunch.
2. A Complete Protein
NASA has for a long time considered quinoa one of the most important foods to take on long space flights. Not only is quinoa high in protein, the quality of the protein is exceptionally high. While most plant based proteins lack some of the essential amino acids, quinoa contains all nine essential amino acids. Moreover, quinoa has a good amount of each of these essential amino acids with a protein profile that is very similar to quality cow’s milk whey protein.
3. High In Fiber
Quinoa has twice as much fiber as grains like whole wheat, brown rice, and wheat berries. Fiber helps you more easily digest your food so that you absorb more of the nutrients you ingest. Fiber also prevents your blood sugar from rising too much, lowers your cholesterol, and helps prevent colon cancer. Another amazing benefit of high fiber foods is that they are more filling, and thus, keep you satiated for a much longer time. This is a great benefit to those who are attempting to lose weight and for those who are concerned about controlling their weight and preventing food cravings.
4. Full Of Vitamins, Minerals, and Antioxidants
When scientists study the nutritional profile of quinoa compared to other foods, quinoa ranks as one of the most nutritionally balanced foods on the planet. It contains a wide array of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Quinoa is particularly high in manganese, phosphorus, iron, copper, magnesium, zinc, calcium, vitamin E, and the B-vitamins (especially folate). It is also exceptionally high in flavonoid antioxidants like quercetin and kaempferol, as well as anti-inflammatory phytonutrients like rhamnogalacturonans and arabinans.
5. Naturally Gluten-free
For those with Celiac’s Disease or a gluten sensitivity, quinoa must seem like a miracle food! However, you should also keep in mind that cutting back on gluten can improve anyone’s health. Besides eating quinoa as a grain, you can also now find pasta and gluten-free breads made from quinoa.
Conclusion: It’s a No Brainer!
After reading about the 5 key health benefits of quinoa above, you can see that everyone should keep some dried quinoa in their pantry. It is simply one of the healthiest foods available. It is also very easy to fix and can be easily incorporated into breakfast, lunch, and dinner.