This superfood (pronounced Keen-Wah) is usually mistaken as a grain, but is actually a seed packed with protein, vitamins, and minerals that give you long lasting energy and many other health benefits. Let’s take a closer look at these little guys to see what they can do for you!
- Protein – Though quinoa boasts a large dose of protein, its the quality rather than quantity that we’re interested in. This seed is considered a complete protein, which means it contains all nine amino acids that are essential building blocks to make all other proteins in the body. This can lead to healthy muscle growth and tissue repair.
- Magnesium – Quinoa contain a large amount of Magnesium, an important electrolyte that plays a big role in muscle function, heartbeat and blood flow, and bone health. This means that quinoa can help prevent high blood pressure and osteoporosis.
- Riboflavin – Riboflavin (Vitamin B12) is a small organic compound that helps enzymes in many biochemical processes, including the conversion of food to fuel. A handful of quinoa could therefore help boost your metabolism and break down food quicker. Vitamin B12 along with Magnesium has been shown to help reduce the frequency of migraines.
- Vitamin E – This antioxidant is abundant in quinoa, helping to protect cells against damaging free radical species. Vitamin E, along with the iron and zinc in quinoa, can also help boost your overall immune health.
Just one more upside to quinoa is that because it’s not actually a grain, it does not contain any gluten – making it a great option for those with Celiac disease. Even if you’re not sensitive to grain, substituting dishes that normally call for a simple grain with quinoa can have many health benefits!