Quinoa is truly a super food. It is rich in protein and a wide variety of essential nutrients.
It has grown in the Andes Mountains for at least 5,000 years. The ancient Incas believed it had special powers and referred to it as "the mother of all grains". It served as a dietary staple and was used in religious rituals. Inca warriors were fed quinoa in the belief that it gave them strength and stamina.
Although quinoa is a seed, most people think of it as a grain and cook it as such. It's available in health food stores and in most supermarkets.
|Quinoa, uncooked||Values per 100g (3.5 oz)||Energy||368kcal||Protein||14g||Carbohydrate||64g||Starch||52g||Fat||7g||- saturated||0.7g||- polyunsaturated||3.2g||Fiber||7g||Sodium||2.7g||Phosphorus||457mg||Magnesium||197mg||Iron||4.5mg||Vitamin E||2.4mg||Vitamin B6||0.5mg||Folate||184mcg||Zinc||3mg||Calcium||47mg||Copper||0.59mg||Manganese||2mg||Selenium||8.5mcg||Source: USDA National Nutrient Database|
The most amazing thing about quinoa, is its protein value. Quinoa has more protein than any other grain (12-18%) It is a complete protein which means it contains all the 8 essential amino acids needed by humans for tissue growth and repair. That makes it an excellent choice for vegetarians.
Quinoa is a rich source of many vital minerals and vitamins including manganese, phosphorus, iron, calcium, B-complex vitamins (pyridoxine, pantothenic acid, folate, biotin, thiamin, and niacin), vitamin E, magnesium, zinc, and copper.
An ideal food for those with sensitive digestive systems, quinoa is light and easy to digest and its nutrients are easily absorbed.
The fat content is about 6%, which is relatively high when compared to other grains. But these are healthy fats, omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids and Vitamin E. It is low in sodium and is a good source of dietary fiber.
Quinoa is gluten-free, making it an excellent choice for those who are sensitive to gluten or suffer from Celiac disease.
Quinoa is beneficial to cardiovascular health and can help reduce migraines because of its high percentage of magnesium, a mineral that helps relax blood vessels.
Quinoa has no cholesterol and contains no sugar and because of its low glycemic level, it is recommended for diabetics.
It is a very good source of iron, vital for energy and proper brain function.
Given all these quinoa nutrition facts, no wonder it's considered one of the top 10 super foods.
Include it in your diet for successful aging.