A Superhero Seed: Quinoa Health Benefits
Quinoa, tagged a whole grain – I lump it in that category, too, simply because it’s easier to discuss that way, but technically it’s a seed and is packed with health benefits. A relative of the leafy green vegetable family (kale, spinach, collard greens, swiss chard), if not harvested, quinoa will sprout into a leafy veggie. From South America, quinoa was once considered, “the gold of the Incas.”
Quinoa Loves You All Over
Why eat quinoa? Let’s summarize some top quinoa health benefits:
- Quinoa is a complete protein – that’s right – besides soybeans and shitake mushrooms, it’s one of the few vegetarian sources of a complete protein, providing all 8 essential amino acids on its own. Unlike whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds, it does not need to be paired with anyone – no “Wonder Twin” powers needed here. This superhero seed has it all on its own!
- Especially high in Magnesium, which helps to relax the muscles and blood vessels, helpful both for migraine headaches and heart health.
- High in B2, Riboflavin, which has been helpful in reducing migraines in migraine sufferers, probably because it supports the energy production within cells.
- A good source of fiber, like many seeds, leafy vegetables, and whole grains, so it helps you hit that recommended 25-30 g of fiber a day.
“Is Quinoa Yummy?”
IMO, the answer to that rests entirely upon how you cook and flavor it. There aren’t any magical foods that cook and season themselves – I wish there were. Restaurants and convenient, quickly cooked foods exist for a reason. But I’m here to help with that. Check out my Mediterranean Quinoa Recipe with White Balsamic Vinaigrette.