Food of the Day: Quinoa

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Happy Tuesday Team!

If you’ve seen my other posts, you should know that nutrition and healthy eating is really important to and maintaining weight loss. A lot of people do fine when it comes to working out and being active, but when it comes to figuring out what to eat – people are completely lost. But if there is one food item that you should start eating, if you don’t already, it would be quinoa.

Quinoa is an ancient grain that’s been consumed for the past 5,000 thousands of years by people who live in the mountain plateaus and in the valleys of countries like Bolivia, Peru, Chile, and Ecuador. Quinoa comes from the Inca word meaning, “mother grain”, and is also in the same botanical family as sugarbeets and spinach.

In order for you to get a better idea of why quinoa is so great, here are 5 reasons why I love quinoa:

 1. PACKED WITH PROTEIN – 1 cup of cooked quinoa has about 8 grams of protein, according to the USDA nutrient database. Quinoa is also considered a “complete” protein, which means it contains all of the 9 essential amino acids that your body needs to function.

2. PROMOTES HEALTHY DIGESTION – 1 cup of cooked quinoa contains 5 grams of fiber. Fiber is essential for a healthy and active digestion system. A diet high in fiber can also help lower cholesterol levels and control blood sugar.

3. NATURAL MULTIVITAMIN – Quinoa is jam packed with all kinds of vitamins such as: iron, magnesium, calcium, potassium, and folate (a B vitamin).

4. COMPLEX CARB – Quinoa is also a great complex carbohydrate, meaning that your body takes a longer time to convert it to sugar – unlike refined grains like white rice. It’s also roughly 222 calories per cup, which is not that bad considering its high levels of vitamins, protein, and fiber.

5. VERSATILE COOKING OPTIONS – Quinoa is one of those food items that you can literally put in almost everything. You can put it in salads, you can use it to replace rice, you can even make burgers with it! One of my favorite things to make is quinoa stuffed tomatoes. You can find a ton of great recipes online – one of my go-to websites is www.foodgawker.com.

 

What’s not to love right?!

 

I usually buy my quinoa in bulk and wash it before I cook it. For extra flavor I boil it low sodium chicken broth. If you’ve never tried it before, definitely give it a shot! And if you make something delicious, please post pictures to our Facebook. We want to see what you’re making in the kitchen. 🙂

 

That’s all for now my dear readers.

-Coach Colleen