There are loads of benefits of eating quinoa, one being that it tastes so good. You’ve probably heard all the hype about this wonder food, and it’s being talked up for good reason. You can easily find quinoa at any grocery store and I highly recommend giving it a try. It’s easy to cook and works well with lots of foods. Not to mention it’s gluten-free, so it’s safe if you have celiac disease. On top of all that, the nutrition factor is nothing to shake a stick at either. Check out these benefits of eating quinoa and you’ll easily see what I mean.
1. It’s Full of Protein
Protein is a nutrient your body needs for many reasons. It aids in muscle function and keeps your hair and skin healthy, just to name a couple. Meat is probably the best source of complete protein, but quinoa contains all nine essential amino acids, making it a great substitute if you are a vegetarian (or even if you aren’t). This is one of the top benefits of eating quinoa.
2. It Has Fiber
Fiber regulates your digestion and can help fight heart disease. If that’s not enough, fiber can also help you control your weight. It fills you up and digests slowly, which means you stay full longer and don’t need to snack between meals. Quinoa is a great source of fiber and makes a wonderful addition to any meal.
3. It’s a Complex Carbohydrate
You don’t have to be afraid of the carbs in quinoa because they are the good kind. Complex carbs give your body long lasting energy so you can power through your day with ease. It’s not a good idea to skimp on carbs, but you should focus on the good kind, like quinoa, and skip the refined carbs. Quinoa is a great centerpiece to a healthy and filling meal.
4. It Has Iron
Iron is a nutrient that you should pay attention to, especially if you’re a woman. Women lose a lot of iron each month during menstruation and need a good stockpile should they become pregnant. Iron helps transport oxygen throughout your body and a deficiency can result in anemia. Add quinoa to your meal plans and you can feel good about your iron levels.
5. It Contains Fatty Acids
You probably know by now that you need to eat a certain amount of healthy fats to keep your body working properly. Fatty acids, like those found in quinoa, can help cut your risk of developing heart disease as well as boosting brain function. Mix quinoa with salmon or nuts for an even bigger dose of healthy fatty acids.
6. Low in Calories
A ¼ cup of quinoa weighs in at under 200 calories, which makes it a great addition to your meals. It’s way better than fried foods on the side and offers up a lot in the way of nutrition at the same time. You obviously can’t eat huge amounts of quinoa or you may overdo it, but quinoa is a great choice if you’re watching your calorie intake.
7. It’s Full of Antioxidants
Quinoa contains more antioxidants than any other grain. Antioxidants help fight free radical damage, which can help stave off a variety of health problems, including heart disease and cancer. Combine quinoa with other healthy foods and you’ll get a well-rounded dose of antioxidants at every meal.
How do you prepare quinoa? It makes a great substitute for rice as a side dish and it works really well in vegetable salads too. Mix and match it with your favorite ingredients to find what you like best. Do you have any secrets to share about quinoa?