Quinoa originated in the Andes mountains of South America and was first used by the Andean population around 3000-4000 years ago. It is, technically, classified as a seed rather than a grain!
An interesting fact about the history of Quinoa is that the grain-like seed was once a staple food in the Incan diet, due to which they called it as the ‘mother grain’. Even the Incan emperor would go out of his way to show respect for this plant by breaking the ground with a gold implement during the first time it would be planted in a particular season.
Quinoa was only introduced in America in the 1980s after the Spanish colonists had done their best to ban the growth of this crop during the European conquest of South America. They were, of course, unsuccessful in doing this, and the plant is now flourishing in many countries and has even been declared as a ‘superfood’ by the United Nations due to its impressive nutritional value.
Over time, Quinoa has become a popular food in many parts of the world due to its numerous health benefits and delicious taste.
Ideal food for people that suffer from diabetes
one of the most impressive things about Quinoa is the fact that it has a low glycemic index. Its glycemic index is approximately 53. This means that it is an ideal food for people that suffer from diabetes or wish to prevent diabetes, as it can help stabilize your blood sugar levels and prevent a sudden spike in insulin levels. Another great thing about foods with a low glycemic index like Quinoa is that they do not cause the unwanted weight gain that processed carbohydrates cause!
Quinoa is a great option for vegetarians or vegans
The second fact that makes Quinoa such amazing food is that it contains a great amount of protein as compared to other grains, such as wheat and rice. It contains all of the amino acids that are essential for the body to function properly, which is a rare property for food which is not derived from animals to have. Due to this fact, Quinoa is a great option for vegetarians or vegans to consume in order to obtain a sufficient amount of protein and prevent becoming deficient in this essential nutrient. The high amount of protein also makes this a good food for those that wish to build muscle.
Contains a considerable amount of fibre
One of the factors that causes a large number of people to add Quinoa in their diet is the fact that it contains a considerable amount of fibre. Many people have issues with getting enough fibre in their diet, which can lead to quite a few health issues. Fibre is essential to boost the health of your heart and improve the functioning of your digestive system, which is why many people resort to taking supplements to get the required amount of fibre into their diet. Per cup of Quinoa, you can easily obtain more than one-fifth of your daily required intake of fibre, which is a good amount, especially if it is paired with fibre rich vegetables.
Eliminate or prevent Iron deficiency
Iron deficiencies are one of the most common deficiencies out there, but adding Quinoa to your diet might just eliminate or prevent this deficiency! That’s right, Quinoa is rich in iron and is much more appetising than taking an iron supplement.
Consuming one cup of Quinoa can provide you with a fifteen percent of your daily required amount, which can be a big help for those that don’t consume a lot of other iron-rich foods such as red meat. Getting enough iron boosts your muscles, your brain and prevents the nasty side effects of becoming anaemic.
Another fact about Quinoa that draws the attention of certain people is that it is gluten-free. Many people in the world are intolerant to gluten due to having celiac disease, while others prefer to avoid it to prevent said disease or for some other health reasons. Most grains do contain gluten, which makes it hard for those on a gluten-free diet to get their required fibre and nutrients. Luckily, Quinoa is a seed that does not contain gluten, so it can be safely consumed as a grain substitute by people that are avoiding gluten!
Lower Cholesterol Level
One of the most amazing things about Quinoa is the fact that it has the potential to lower cholesterol levels. A lot of people struggle with high cholesterol and have to carefully control their diet and take medication every day to keep their cholesterol levels in the recommended range.
Consuming Quinoa on a regular basis, in conjunction with other nutritious foods, can aid you in gradually lowering your cholesterol and becoming a healthier person overall. In this case, you might be able to reduce the amount of medication that you need to take, which is always a plus.
That sums up all of the important facts regarding the health benefits and the history of the amazing food that is Quinoa!