Quinoa is one of the healthiest and the most nutritious foods on the planet, that over the years has gained steady popularity and has become the most sought after edible seed. Botanically related to the spinach, the nutrient-packed Quinoa seed is an ancient grain crop loaded with health benefits. Eaten for thousands of years by the people of South America and grown on the Andes Mountains, Quinoa(pronounced as keen-wah) has come a long way from behind the shelves of health food to the main aisles of all the popular supermarkets.
Enjoying the status of being a perfect substitute to starchy pasta and rice it has recently become a trend food and has reached the superfood status. This mother of all grains Quinoa is not only Gluten Free (making it a great option for gluten intolerant, especially to the staple Indian grain like wheat ) but it is extremely high in Protein. Having a very High Fibre content Quinoa is also one of the few plant foods that contain sufficient amounts of all nine essential Amino Acids, Magnesium, B vitamins, Iron, Phosphorus, Vitamin E, and various Antioxidants and Flavonoids.
It’s sweet, nutty flavour and its delicate texture or incredibly easy cooking recipes make Quinoa one of the most perfect ingredient on the block. It can be incorporated in any form in a breakfast bowl, lunch or a dinner menu. Easily available at all supermarkets and grocery retail stores, it is a perfect health food that can be Flavourful, Healthy, Toothsome and Wholesome all at the same time.
· Quinoa has a Low Glycemic Index of around 53, meaning it won’t cause a dramatic spike in blood sugar. This makes it a healthful option for diabetics. It is also said to keep blood pressure and cholesterol in check although some more research needs to be conducted here.
· Quinoa is high in antioxidants- substances that neutralize free radicals and helps fight the ageing process and many diseases. Sprouting of the grain further increases it’s antioxidant levels.
· Quinoa is a salubrious, wholesome grain for weight watchers. It helps to both increase metabolism and reduces appetite significantly due to its high protein and fibre content. Feeling of fullness after consuming a bowl of Quinoa makes one eat fewer calories overall.
Quinoa, however, comes with an outer protective layer of bitter-tasting Saponins. (Saponin help to protect the plant from animals, insects). Luckily, it’s easy to get rid of this coating by rinsing the Quinoa several times just before cooking. Boxed quinoa is often pre-rinsed, but it is advisable to give the seeds an additional rinse at home.
Nutritionally decorated with incredible power-packed health benefits and it’s versatile nature to be incorporated in most recipes, makes Quinoa one of the most desired and easy to love ingredient of the pantry shelf. Use Quinoa as your base ingredient, and be as experimental and creative as you can to dish up some delicious, perfectly fluffy and healthful recipes.
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