Health Facts

QUINOA: A Gluten-Free, Staple Food!

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Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah) is a nutrient-dense, gluten-free, hypo-allergenic, complex carbohydrate with a balance of B vitamins and magnesim to support optimal digestion and balanced blood sugar.  It also contains vitamin E, manganese, calcium, iron, phosphorous, copper, zinc and dietary fiber.  Although it’s considered a grain, it is technically a seed.  Quinoa is a COMPLETE protein containing all of the essential amino acids and is very easy for most people to digest.  You can add quinoa to soups, salads or make a pilaf.  It’s great warm or cold! I buy the big bag of organic quinoa called TruRoots from Costco, and it lasts me forever!

Recipe options:

1 cup cooked quinoa (white or red)

1 cup cooked spinach

1 oz. goat cheese

1/2 oz. raisins

1/2 T nutritonal yeast

1/2 T ground flaxseeds

Any other vegetables you like for cold quinoa salad or warm dish: cucumber, red bell pepper, red onion, garlic, corn, peas, scallions, radishes, shiitake mushrooms, etc!!

Herbs/Spices (you can choose which ones you like!): garlic, onion powder, turmeric, cumin, coriander, celtic sea salt & pepper or basil, oregano, parsley, thyme, cilantro.

SOAKING GRAINS:

Soak 1 cup of quinoa in filtered water with 1 tablespoon of fresh squeezed lemon juice, raw organic apple cider vinegar (Bragg’s) OR undenatured whey.  Use enough filtered water to cover 2 inches above the grain.  Use a glass container/bowl (I use a mason jar) and put a thin towel over the top of the jar.  Allow to soak overnight (or at least 8 hours). I know soaking seems intimidating and time-consuming, but once you get used to the process, it will be second nature and won’t take any time at all.  Our ancestors soaked all grains, legumes, nuts and seeds before consumption to break down the hard-to-digest phytates and also release the highly beneficial nutrients. 

http://www.westonaprice.org/food-features/living-with-phytic-acid

Why is it so important to remove/reduce phytic acid (phytates)?
Phytic acid is an antinutrient found in grains and legumes which binds important minerals preventing your body from fully absorbing them. Consumption of high levels of phytates:
• results in mineral deficiencies, leading to poor bone health and tooth decay
• blocks absorption of zinc, iron, phosphorous and magnesium
• causes body to leech calcium
• lowers metabolism
• contributes to anemia

**The overconsumption of gluten-containing grains cause digestive weakness, immune activation and chronic inflammatory disorders (more on this in a later post). 

***Store quinoa in an airtight container in a cool, dry, dark place.  Can be a substitute for flour in baking recipes too!

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