Quinoa grain is actually more like a vegetable than a grain. Quinoa originated in South America and has been used as a diet staple for centuries. Quinoa is a close relative of spinach, kale and Swiss chard. Quinoa grain can help you lose weight in a variety of ways. Quinoa is rich in protein, vitamins and minerals, and it leaves you feeling satisfied, not deprived. This is why quinoa is becoming popular as a grain alternative and weight loss food. Here are 4 reasons quinoa can facilitate your weight loss efforts:
Quinoa seeds are rich in eight essential amino acids and vitamins such as magnesium and calcium. Quinoa is also high in iron and vitamin B 12. Both iron and vitamin B 12 are essential for energy production and weight loss. If you are deficient in B vitamins, it can slow down your weight loss because your body won’t be able to synthesize nutrients as efficiently.
Quinoa is high in dietary fiber and protein. The protein and fiber found in quinoa can make you feel fuller, which will make you less likely to binge on unhealthy foods. Quinoa contains approximately seven grams of protein per serving and six grams of dietary fiber. Quinoa is especially helpful for vegetarians trying to lose weight who have trouble finding foods that will fill them up. Dietary fiber binds to fat and cholesterol, which causes your body to absorb less fat and cholesterol. This is one way that quinoa can help you lose weight. The fiber found in quinoa also reduces the plaque build-up along your arterial walls, which reduces your risk of heart disease and stroke.
3. Low Glycemic Index
Quinoa is low on the glycemic index. The glycemic index indicates how carbohydrates affect your blood glucose. Because quinoa has a low glycemic index, it means that quinoa is safe for diabetics and it won’t spike your blood sugar. When your blood glucose is significantly elevated it crashes, causing you to crave more sugar or simple carbohydrates. When your blood sugar is unbalanced, staying on a diet and making healthy eating choices is difficult because you crave sweets and refined breads. Quinoa is 35 on the glycemic index, which is relatively low and similar to most vegetables.
4. Low Calorie
Quinoa is relatively low in calories. One serving of cooked quinoa contains approximately 172 calories. Even if you ate two or three servings of quinoa, you would get a much larger quantity of food for fewer calories than you would eating a plate of pasta, for example. You don’t have to worry about overeating with quinoa. For a low calorie quinoa meal you can combine quinoa with salad or add vegetables and beans.
Now you have seen four ways that quinoa can help you lose weight. You should also know that quinoa is as easy to prepare as rice. You can also substitute quinoa in dishes that call for pasta or rice. Many people enjoy quinoa in place of breakfast cereal too. You can find quinoa at most health food stores.