Quinoa (pronounced ‘keen-wa’) is an ancient grain domesticated by the folks of South America. A pseudocereal, it is highly nutritious.
Quinoa, as many other ancient grains, has not been altered or genetically modified in any form and has the natural ability to survive in harsh conditions. As it can grow with little water, it is environment-friendly.
Quinoa, is a complete source of protein, with 9 amino acids necessary for a healthy diet. It is a superfood known for its incredible nutrition. Loaded with natural protein, fibre and minerals such as calcium, magnesium and phosphorus.
UN's Food and Agriculture Organization hails it as "the only plant food that contains all the essential amino acids, trace elements, and vitamins and contains no gluten”.
Let's look at how eating Quinoa benefits our health.
It also comes with 222 kcal and 4 grams of fats and in addition to this, it also contains traces of Omega-3 fatty acids (per100g).
Apart from all these health benefits, quinoa is delicious to consume and can easily be incorporated into your diet.
Here is a Nutrient Dense Spicy Quinoa Recipe.
Yes. While rice and wheat consumptions are coming down, people need alternative grain.
While we learn about how Quinoa benefits our health, Zizira is also exploring the benefits that this protein-rich food can have on the farmers of Meghalaya.
There is a lot of potential for farmers of Meghalaya to grow quinoa, as this grain has incredible nutritional benefits and is grown organically. There is an upsurge of quinoa import into the European Union and it reached 20,038 tons in February 2016, which is why there is hope for farmers to grow quinoa.
It is a win-win.
Quinoa benefits consumers who are health conscious and looking for highly nutritious food.
Quinoa benefits farmers looking for better returns for their produce. At present farmers are getting four times more revenue for quinoa compared to rice. The prices may come down in future but the better variety of seeds improve the yields and provide good revenue for farmers.
Moreover, quinoa needs less water and it does not need a highly fertile soil either. In fact, it can even grow in salty soils.
India needs million tons of Quinoa in the years ahead. Thus, quinoa can surely improve the livelihood of farmers.
- Dr. Srinivas Rao, a biotech and life science scientist
Read more about Dr Srinivas Rao expertise on quinoa.
Do you know of any other benefits of quinoa?
Share it us in the comment section below. We would love to hear from you!