Quinoa is one of the most protein rich foods that nature has given us. A recent study of these grains reveals that they are actually the most nutritious food available in the world. Considering all its benefits to the mankind, the United Nations (Food and Agricultural Committee) has declared 2013 as the year of the Quinoa. These grains contain all the essential amino acids and minerals.
Quinoa is one of the oldest cultivated foods on the high altitudes of Andes and some South American countries and had been in use as staple food for the inhabitants. In recent years, it has made its revival in the health conscious circles as a nutrient dense super food.
It is seen as a replacement for all our future food problems. It is stated that it can be prepared like rice with the same ratio of rice and water i.e. one cup quinoa and two cups of water. It can be eaten with vegetables just as rice.
As it is not so commonly known or available in India, no Indian name is given to it. In Hindi it is known as kunowa and in Telugu quinowa as they pronounce its name in their respective regional language accent. So not bothering about the regional name, if it is available in your market, grab it and avail all its health benefits.
- It is gluten free and contains iron, Vitamin B, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, vitamin E and fibre. It is one of the only food plants that contains all the essential nine amino acids.
- It contains fibre that prevents constipation, heart disease, high blood pressure and helps lower cholesterol.
- Quinoa contains flavanoids that are typically found in foods like berries in substantial levels. By eating quinoa you can protect yourself from cardio- vascular diseases and reduce inflammatory conditions.
- Vitamin B that quinoa contains help with many processes that the body goes through each day.
- The phyto-nutrients that are present in quinoa help battle free radical damage with their anti-oxidant effects. That is why quinoa is so special because it has so many healing properties which make it a bona fide super food and one of the healthiest foods too.
- Quinoa contains lysine which is mainly essential for tissue growth and repair.
- Because of its high protein levels and fibre content, it can help to your weight loss goal and has a host of other vitamins and mineral that can give you a feel-good factor.
- Iron in quinoa helps in haemoglobin formation which carries oxygen to our muscles to aid in their contraction. thus it keeps our red blood cells healthy.
- Magnesium is another important mineral in quinoa that helps to relax blood vessels and thereby alleviates migraine, it prevents type 2 diabetes by promoting healthy blood sugar control. Other benefits of magnesium include transmission of nerve impulses, body temperature regulation, energy production and formation of healthy bones and teeth.
- Manganese is an anti-oxidant which protects red blood cells and other cells from the damage by radicals.
- Quinoa is rich in Riboflavin (B2) that improves energy, metabolism within brain and muscle cells and help create energy production in the cells.
By Nibhanapudi Suguna