Quinoa is a cereal native to South America. Its center of origin is in Bolivia and Peru, and it is considered a whole grain. It contains all the original parts of the seed, making it a great provider of protein, even much more than brown rice or salmon.
According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), this food contains great nutritional value among its grains. Its bioactive compounds surpass traditional cereals in biological value.
«So, if we compare the essential amino acid content of quinoa with that of wheat and rice, we can appreciate its great nutritional advantage. For example, for the amino acid lysine, quinoa, as it is also known, has 5.6 grams of amino acid / 16 grams of nitrogen, compared to rice which has 3.2 and wheat 2.8. This is stated by the entity in its report ‘Quinoa: ancient crop to contribute to global food security’.
Likewise, this cereal has minerals such as iron, magnesium, calcium and zinc, which also exceed its nutritional percentage compared to the cereals mentioned above.
For example, its presence of iron is “triple that of wheat and five times that of rice”, as well as in the case of zinc it almost doubles the amount of its value in wheat and quadruples it in that of corn, according to the FAO.
Therefore, it is not a surprise that people who have a vegetarian diet consume quinoa as one of the main foods within their nutritional field, since the presence of its essential amino acids – the basic components of proteins – contribute to the replacement of meat products, along with other vegetable proteins.
Presence of omega-3 in quinoa
Other of its properties is the presence of healthy fats such as omega-3. This type of polyunsaturated is found in plant and animal foods, such as salmon, oils, and some nuts and seeds.
According to the MedlinePlus information portal of the United States National Library of Medicine, this component contributes to the strengthening of the neuronal part. Likewise, to keep the heart healthy and protected against strokes
Adding quinoa to your diet helps the body receive a higher value of Omega. Every 100 grams of quinoa contains 8.35 omega-3s, surpassing fish such as salmon, which are also rich in this component. However, this provides only 2.67 per 100 grams of the pseudocereal. That is to say that in this case, the seed has five times more of this fat than this fish, according to nutritionist Carlos Andrés Zapata, CEO of ‘Cazamed’.
It is worth clarifying that the organism does not receive this value in its entirety. It adapts only one part ingested, which is why it is essential that it be a complement to other foods in your daily diet.
Contributes to the generation of antioxidants
Quinoa can be one of your best allies, in preventing diseases of cell damage and even in reducing aging. It contains large amounts of vitamin E, an organic molecule that protects body tissue from damage caused by free radicals.
According to the cosmetic brand ‘Bioxán’, quinoa also has vitamin C; considered a powerful antioxidant that neutralizes these molecules that cause oxidative stress and cause loss of elasticity in the skin. In addition, it contributes to the production of collagen in skin cells, which helps maintain the natural structure of the epidermis.Likewise, it has two antioxidant flavonoids: quercetin and kaemferol, which also help reduce the signs of aging, according to the aforementioned portal.
Finally, always remember to consult with your nutritionist or family doctor about the benefits and changes in your diet. This is in order to avoid adverse effects or problems that may hinder the healthy state of your body.