Quinoa (pronounced “KEEN-wah”) is a grain, grown in South America (namely Chile, Peru and Bolivia) for thousands of years, is now heralded as a super food and is used as an alternative to couscous and rice.
With twice the protein content of barley or rice, it’s also a good source of magnesium, calcium and manganese. Quinoa contains several B vitamins, dietary fibre and vitamin E. It contains all nine essential amino acids, including lysine and isoleucine acids, which other grains lack; making it a complete protein source. It lowers cholesterol, gives us energy and is also gluten free. It is a low-GI food, which means it’s released slowly and keeps us fuller for longer.
I have used Quinoa for several years now. It has a delicate nutty flavour and can be used in salads and as an alternative to rice. Because it’s gluten free, it’s an excellent wheat free alternative for those who struggle with wheat intolerance.
It’s also great for people who follow a vegan diet, who might potentially find it difficult to get enough protein in their diets. Quinoa is high in anti-inflammatory phytonutrients; which means it’s beneficial in the prevention and treatment of disease.
Quinoa also contains small amounts of Omega-3 fatty acids and has a high content of monounsaturated fat. It’s a good all round super food.