Quinoa, pronounced as keen-wah, has emerged as a super grain over the last couple of years. It is praised all over the world for its high protein and calcium content and countless health benefits. Quinoa is a tiny, bead-shaped grain that is harvested in South America, mainly Bolivia. It is a protein-packed grain containing every amino acid, and is particularly rich in lysine, which promotes healthy tissue growth throughout the body.
It comes in three varieties – white, black and red. The white variety easily available throughout the world, including India.
SO, WHAT DOES QUINOA HAVE TO OFFER?
Quinoa is a super grain that is packed with all the healthy vitamins, minerals and nutrients. Here are some of the nutrients:
1 . High Protein Content
-Quinoa contains all 8 essential amino acids which is a rarity in plant protein source and even supplements available in the market.
-It is particularly rich in amino acid lysine which promotes healthy tissue growth throughout the body.
2 . Rich Source Of Fiber
–High fiber content is something for which quinoa should definitely make it to your diet plan. The fiber facilitates bowel movement in our body.
3 . Packed With Minerals
-Quinoa is rich in several minerals of which Iron is one. Its high Iron content is good for the brain, muscles and hemoglobin levels in the body.
-Quinoa is an excellent source of calcium that is essential for strong bones and muscles and heart health.
– The manganese content in quinoa ensures that your blood pressure and cholesterol levels are in check
-Quinoa is loaded with magnesium. Besides helping in maintaining blood sugar levels, magnesium reduces the chances of osteoporosis and improves heart health.
4 . Vitamin Rich
– Quinoa is rich in vitamin B2 which is a powerful antioxidant that slows down the ageing process. It is also rich in Vitamins B1, B3, B6 and E.
5 . High Flavonoid Content
-Quinoa contains flavonoids which are great for the heart and prevent inflammation in the body.
6 . Gluten Free
-Quinoa is gluten-free and thus is safe for all those who suffer from gluten intolerance.
7 . Other Nutrients
-Quinoa boasts of various other nutrients such as zinc, potassium, folate, phosphorous, Omega 3 fatty acids.
WHAT ARE SOME EASY WAYS TO HAVE QUINOA?
Since quinoa is relatively a new grain in this part of the world, it is largely foreign to the Indian taste buds. It has a slightly bitter taste due to its outer coating. Here’s a few ways in which you can incorporate quinoa in your diet:
1 . Rinse quinoa thoroughly before cooking. This will clean the bitter-tasting outer coat of quinoa. Most readily available packages contain pre-cleaned seeds, still it is recommended you rinse the grains thoroughly before cooking.
2 . Dry-roast the grains for close to 5 minutes on a medium heat and then cook the grains with water or stock. For one cup of quinoa grains, use two cups of water/stock.
3 . The cooked quinoa possesses a translucent look and crunchy texture owing to which it can be added to a variety of recipes. Using cooked quinoa in salads and porridge will not only up the taste but also the nutrient value of the dish.
4 . Add cooked quinoa to oatmeal or any other grain in equal quantities and cook with spices of your choice for a tasty and healthy treat.
5 . Ground quinoa can be used in baking as a substitute of white flour.
6 . Don’t worry about the quantity you consume as it is great for you. You can eat about a cup of cooked quinoa daily.
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So, go ahead and try out this super-healthy food grain and reap the countless health benefits that it has to offer. Eat Healthy, Stay Healthy!