Quinoa: Benefits And Harms

Quinoa tastes like unpolished rice has creamy and nutty notes and has a mild flavor. This product is similar to cooked rice in texture, which further unites them. Despite its exotic origin, you should not be afraid of specific aromas and flavors. Quinoa is a neutral base for many dishes, which is well saturated with herbs and spices, and organically dilutes meat-based sauces.

Nutritional value of quinoa

100 g of quinoa contains:

  • Carbohydrates: 64,2 г.
  • Fat: 6,1 г.
  • Proteins: 14,1 г.
  • Dietary fiber: 7 г.
  • Calorie content of quinoa per 100 g is 368 kcal.

Quinoa groats: vitamins and minerals per 100 g:

  • Vitamin A – 1 mcg.
  • Thiamine (B1) – 0.36 mg.
  • Riboflavin (B2) – 0.318 mg.
  • Choline (B4) – 70.2 mg.
  • Pantothenic acid (B5) – 0.772 mg.
  • Pyridoxine (B6) – 0.487 mg.
  • Folic acid (B9) – 183 mcg.
  • Alpha-tocopherol (E) – 2.44 mg.
  • Vitamin PP – 1.52 mg.
  • Betaine – 630 mg.
  • Potassium – 563 mg (23% of the daily value).
  • Magnesium – 197 mg (49% of the daily value).
  • Phosphorus – 457 mg (57% of the daily value).
  • Iron – 4.57 mg (25% of the daily value).
  • Manganese – 2,033 mg (101% of the daily value).
  • Copper – 590 mcg (59% of the daily value).
  • Selenium – 8.5 mcg (15% of the daily value).
  • Zinc – 3.1 mg (26% of the daily value).

The protein portion of quinoa cereal also contains a number of substitutable and essential acids (18 acids in total). Polyunsaturated fatty acids (3.3 g per 100 g) and monounsaturated fatty acids (1.6 g per 100 g) make up the largest share of fat. Linoleic, oleic and palmitic acids have a large mass fraction.

Useful properties of quinoa

  • It is enriched with fiber. It stimulates digestion, cleanses the intestines, and increases their efficiency.
  • It boils well and has a mucous texture, so it does not cause digestive problems in case of peptic ulcer, gastritis, and inflamed gastric mucosa.
  • The body absorbs calcium well from the milk in which the porridge is cooked, thanks to the lysine in the cereal.
    It is gluten-free and has a low glycemic index – a hearty morning meal suitable for everyone.
  • Quinoa porridge, despite the boiling of many components, is one of the most useful in composition compared to its counterparts. Quinoa contains protein, which is very similar to the protein in meat products, so the cereal is essential in the diet of vegetarians, children, athletes, and pregnant women. You will not find such a protein content in any other cereal crop. Eating a portion of this dish, you get all the valuable amino acids: lysine, leucine, tryptophan, glycine, serine, proline, cysteine, methionine, and many others.
  • It stabilizes the nervous system: it softens the effect of stress factors, strengthens sleep, and reduces inattention and irritability.

The benefits of quinoa for women

Quinoa is not one of the typical “female” foods that have a targeted effect, but its use is still beneficial. First of all, this product will appeal to adherents of a healthy lifestyle and vegetarian diet, because it contains a lot of vegetable protein, which is well absorbed by the gastrointestinal tract. The high content of B vitamins supports psycho-emotional tone and reduces stress on the nervous system caused by stress. The product also softens the course of PMS and menopause syndromes.

Due to the high content of strong antioxidant components (selenium, manganese, vitamin E), the consumption of cereals also reduces the risk of breast cancer.

The benefits of quinoa for men

Two characteristics of this grain are valuable for men’s health: its high nutritional value and high content of easily digestible protein. The former provides energy for prolonged mental and physical labor, and the latter improves muscle function and recovery after strength training. Therefore, this exotic American cereal is primarily useful for athletes and those who work with their hands.

The benefits of quinoa for weight loss

Like any other cereal, quinoa in its finished form does not contain so many calories, so it will be an excellent side dish option for people who are losing weight or following a healthy diet (about 120 kcal per 100 g of cooked cereal). Quinoa has a high fiber content, which helps you to get full faster and keeps you feeling full for a long time. A large amount of protein ensures a good metabolism and also reduces appetite. Slow carbohydrates are a source of energy that will keep you energized for a long time and will not be stored in the sides, which fast carbohydrates will do, and protein will help build beautiful and well-defined muscles.

Harms and contraindications

Like any other food, quinoa can be harmful. In most cases, this happens when a person consumes it in unreasonable amounts. The high protein content can have a detrimental effect on the kidneys. People with gallbladder diseases should be more careful about it, as the cereal has choleretic properties, which can lead to blockage of the biliary tract.

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Written by Bella Adams

I'm a professionally-trained, executive chef with over ten years in Restaurant Culinary and hospitality management. Experienced in specialized diets, including Vegetarian, Vegan, Raw foods, whole food, plant-based, allergy-friendly, farm-to-table, and more. Outside of the kitchen, I write about lifestyle factors that impact well-being.

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