Learn about the superfood you've heard so much about!
Quinoa Fudge? Oh yes…and more! Discover more delicious recipes made with this versatile and amazing grain in our New Quinoa E-Book.
Read on to learn about one of the most perfect foods on earth. Pronounced keen-wah, taken from the Spanish word: quinua, Quinoa is a grain-like crop plant of the amaranth family cultivated mainly in Peru, Bolivia and Chile for its edible seeds. Quinoa originated in Ecuador, Bolivia, Colombia and Peru where it were it was domesticated about 4,000 years ago for consumption. Through archaeological association, evidence shows a non-domesticated version used for pastoral herding between 5,2000- 7,000 years ago. (1)
Ancient Superfood of the Incans?
The Incas considered the crop to be sacred and held it in the highest regards calling it the, “Mother of all grains” or chisaya mama. The Inca emperor would traditionally sow the “Golden Implements” also known as the first seeds of the season. Cultivation of Quinoa was suppressed by Spanish colonists due to its use in indigenous ceremonies and was called a “food for Indians.” These conquistadors actually kept Quinoa from cultivation, and forced the Incas to grow wheat instead.
Highly appreciated today for its nutritional value, Quinoa’s protein content is about 18% (very high) for a plant-based protein source. It is a complete protein meaning that it contains all 9 amino acids, known as essential aminos because the body cannot make on its own, and they must be taken in through diet. These essential amino acids include: lysine, tryptophan, leucine and more. It is far superior to other common cereals, and grains. Quinoa’s composition includes essential amino acids, calcium, phosphorus and iron. It is also a good source of fiber, and is easy to digest.
Quinoa’s Essential Nutrient Content
EFAs The “Good Fats”
Essential Fatty Acids or EFAs are commonly known as “healthy fats” because they have been shown to help maintain normal cholesterol levels, and lower LDL cholesterol levels for a healthy heart.
Containing high amounts of dietary fiber, Quinoa may also help reduce the risk of high blood pressure and heart attack. A recent study at Harvard University showed the effects of cereal consumption on heart failure risk.(1)
Researchers studied 35,972 participates in a Women’s Cohort Study in the UK and found that pre-menopausal women who ate a diet rich in fiber from whole grains like Quinoa, had significant protection against breast cancer. Results showed that fiber from whole grain foods like quinoa offered even more protection than fiber from fruits. Pre-menopausal women eating the most fiber (over 30g daily) reduced their risk of developing breast cancer by more than half.(2)
Here are a Few Skinny Recipes Made with Quinoa:
Let’s Get Cooking!
In natural state, heart healthy Quinoa grain has a coating that produces a bitter taste so for a sweeter grain without these bitter compounds, it must be rinsed under water after cooking. Cooked Quinoa contains vitamins, minerals, “healthy” fats, dietary fiber and provides one of the most impressive nutrient profiles of any grain, or cereal and is far more nutrient-dense than rice. This versatile grain adds these important nutrients to any kind of food and can be used to top to hot or cold salads, pasta, in breads, soups, stews, slow cooker recipes and more!
The health promoting properties of whole grains are widely known and the FDA permits foods that contain at least 51% whole grains by weight to display a claim which states that: “consumption is linked to a lower risk of heart disease and certain cancers.” But if you don’t like to eat cereal, find most whole grain foods unappetizing or just don’t have any recipes for Quinoa, get your copy of The New Quinoa E-Book here. It provides everything you need to know about how to use Quinoa in easy-to-follow recipes for any occasion. Quinoa is the delicious alternative to rice, and other bland grains that can leave you overly full, or just plain unsatisfied. Shop here, and try some today!
1) Breakfast cereals and risk of heart failure in the physicians’
health study I. Djoussé L, Gaziano JM. Division of Aging,
Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School,
1620 Tremont St, Third Floor, Boston, MA 02120, USA.
2) Popenoe, Hugh (1989). Lost crops of the Incas: little-known
plants of the Andes with promise for worldwide cultivation.
Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press. p. 149.