A great little superfood that’s all the rave these days is quinoa (keen-wah). Its a naturally gluten free, high fiber, high protein whole grain, you can’t get any more SUPER than that when it comes to nutrition!
Other beneficial components to this super “grain” are that it is high in essential vitamins and minerals, such as calcium, iron, phosphorous, B vitamins, and vitamin E. Unlike other grains, aside from being a high quality protein source, quinoa is low in carbohydrates and high in unsaturated (healthy) fats.
Quinoa is an ancient food staple of the Incas, and was fondly referred to as “The Mother Grain.” Its an ivory-colored, tiny, bead-shaped grain, that’s actually a seed. Its flavor is delicate, almost bland, and has been compared to couscous or rice and can be used in any dish suitable for rice.
Cooked quinoa seeds are fluffy and creamy, yet slightly crunchy and have a delicate, somewhat nutty flavor. Quinoa is actually the seed of a plant that is closely related to beets, chard and spinach. These seeds are not only very rich in amino acid and nutritious, but also very delicious.
The best parts about this seed-grain is that the protein it supplies is complete protein, meaning that it includes all nine essential amino acids. Not only is the amino acid profile well balanced, making it a good choice for vegans concerned about adequate protein intake, it also includes the amino acid lysine, which is essential for tissue growth and repair. In addition to protein, quinoa features a host of other health-building nutrients. Quinoa is a very good source of manganese as well as a good source of magnesium, iron, copper and phosphorus, which make this “grain” especially valuable for persons with migraine headaches, diabetes and atherosclerosis.
Quinoa is not only healthy, but “colorful.” The most popular type of quinoa is a transparent yellow color, and it also comes in other varieties such as orange, pink, red, purple or black. Unfortunately is is often difficult to find quinoa in the marketplace, but the leaves of the quinoa plant are also edible and equally as nutritious, with a taste similar to its green-leafed relatives, spinach, chard and beets.
Foods you can prepare with quinoa include combining cooked chilled quinoa with pinto beans, pumpkin seeds, scallions and coriander, season to taste and enjoy a south-of-the-border inspired salad. You can also add nuts and fruits to cooked quinoa and serve as a breakfast cereal. Use noodles made from quinoa to put a spin on your favorite pasta dishes. Other uses of quinoa include using the sprouts in salads and sandwiches like alfalfa sprouts. Quinoa can be added to your favorite vegetable soups and ground quinoa flour can be added to cookie or muffin recipes. Quinoa is also great to use in tabouli ( a traditional Middle Eastern dish), as a delicious (and wheat-free) substitute for the bulgar wheat with which this dish is usually made.
Lastly, an easy way to quickly begin adding quinoa to your daily diet is with the new Arbonne Essentials Nutrition Bars. These great new nutrition bars are made with non-other than our super “grain” quinoa. Made with nutrient-rich quinoa and 9 grams of pea and rice protein, more digestible than soy or whey, the bar satisfies hunger faster and supports metabolism to help you acheive your weight loss and weight management goals. To order these bars and other awesome Arbonne Essentials nutrition products Shop The Wellness Store !
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