What is quinoa? Quinoa used to be a health food mainly reserved for the health-obsessed and “alternative lifestyle” types – but not anymore. In recent years it’s become more and more mainstream, with it appearing much more frequently in recipe books, restaurants and regular grocery stores.
This super healthy ancient crop is phenomenally good for you. Here are the top quinoa nutrition facts and health benefits:
1. Quinoa is Protein Rich
Despite not being a fish or meat, quinoa is incredibly high in protein, which is one of the central reasons why it’s often so popular with vegetarians and vegans. Just one cup of cooked quinoa contains 8.14 grams of protein. If you’re looking for new ways to add more protein to your diet, quinoa is a healthful solution.
2. Quinoa is High in Fiber
In addition to its high protein content, quinoa health benefits include it being very high in fiber, with one serving providing 21% of the daily recommended fiber intake. Fiber is important for relieving constipation, but can also help lower high blood pressure and lower cholesterol levels. Affordable and very healthy, quinoa is a wise choice for anyone that needs to eat more fiber.
3. Quinoa is Low in Calories
A huge quinoa benefit is its calorie count. One cup of quinoa is 222 calories, which is relatively low and makes it a healthier substitute for pasta or rice. If you’re trying to lose weight but enjoy your pasta and rice sauces, you may want to consider swapping in quinoa as the base of these dishes for a healthier and more nutritional meal.
4. Quinoa is High in Iron
Another important health benefit of quinoa is that it is high in iron, with one serving providing 35% of the recommended daily iron intake. Iron is essential for maintaining energy levels and quinoa is a great non-meat option for including more iron in your diet.
5. Quinoa is Magnesium Rich
Quinoa contains high levels of magnesium, which is important for preventing cardiovascular diseases, regulating high blood pressure and even preventing type 2 diabetes. Just one serving of quinoa provides 30% of the recommended daily intake of magnesium, which healthful benefits are undeniable.
The health benefits of quinoa are immense, and above are some of the very top nutritional benefits to regularly eating quinoa. Look out for quinoa next time you’re in your local grocery store and ideally go for the organic variety. Enjoy!