A diet with Quinoa – Hailed as a superfood, quinoa is a healthy food option that can be consumed by all walks of life. Starting from ordinary people who adopt a healthy lifestyle, adherents of a vegetarian diet, to athletes. When compared to other seeds, quinoa is rich in fiber and high in protein, and gluten-free. It’s no wonder that quinoa has many health benefits.
Quinoa is a source of vegetable protein that contains all the essential amino acids for muscle development and body health. The seeds, which look like grains, are very filling and can help you lose weight by controlling your appetite.
Its higher vitamin and mineral content than the majority of other grains make quinoa crowned as a superfood. The calories per serving are relatively low. These grains are also easy to digest. According to a 2017 Zou study, quinoa contains more lysine protein than wheat, cornstarch, and even rice.
Lysine protein plays a role in the production of collagen, hormones, and enzymes also supports immune system function, and increases mineral absorption. Besides that, quinoa also contains powerful antioxidants, including quercetin and kaempferol.
The results of clinical trials conducted by Brittany L. G. in 2015, showed that quinoa has a protective effect against heart disease and improves metabolic function.
100 grams of cooked quinoa contains:
- 71.61 grams of water
- 120 calories
- 4.4 grams of protein
- 21.3 grams of carbohydrates
- 1.92 grams of fat
- 2.8 grams of fiber
- 6.4 milligrams (mg) of the mineral magnesium
- 152 mg of phosphorus
- 42 micrograms (mcg) of folate (vitamin B9)
- 172 mg of the mineral potassium
Not only that, but quinoa also contains the minerals manganese, copper, iron, zinc, vitamins B1, B2, and B6, as well as small amounts of calcium, niacin, and vitamin E.
Meanwhile, 100 grams of rice has 130 calories, 2.7 grams of protein, 28.2 grams of carbohydrates, and < 1 gram of fiber. The mineral content of rice’s manganese, zinc, and copper is also lower.
Quinoa is available in white, red, black, and yellow. How to process it resembles rice, which is washed first and then cooked.
Can Eating Quinoa Help You Lose Weight?
Quinoa does not play a direct role in weight loss. However, consuming quinoa, which is high in protein and fiber, will make it easier for someone to achieve the ideal body weight they want. How come?
The combination of protein and fiber in quinoa will keep you full longer, and suppress hunger, which in turn reduces food intake.
The high fiber found in quinoa is also said to be able to lower blood cholesterol levels. Thomas G.’s findings suggest quinoa may be able to prevent weight gain. Even so, strong scientific evidence is still needed to support this research.
Similar results were also found by Anne-Sophie S. that quinoa can reduce fat absorption and increase energy use as well as glucose metabolism. That is, these foods may help burn more calories.
The manganese mineral found in quinoa is also believed to be able to prevent obesity, increased triglyceride levels, and metabolic syndrome. Moreover, the relatively low glycemic index of quinoa will keep blood sugar levels regular.
According to Kelvin Halim, a Jovee nutritionist, quinoa does have many health benefits. However, this does not necessarily make you allowed to consume it carelessly. It’s best to eat quinoa in moderation and not overdo it.
“Also combine quinoa with other low-sugar or low-fat ingredients to lose weight. The main principle in losing weight is not only in food choices but also in the number of calories consumed daily. he explained again.
Another Benefit of Consuming Quinoa
Besides losing weight, other benefits that can be obtained from consuming quinoa are:
Lowering blood triglyceride levels. According to Diana Navarro-Perez’s research on obese and overweight people, the consumption of 50 grams of quinoa per day for 12 weeks can lower blood triglyceride levels. The risk of metabolic syndrome also decreased by 70%.
Build muscle mass and increase strength. Foods high in protein are great for building and maintaining muscles and strengthening them. The lysine content in quinoa helps repair muscles and increases the body’s ability to convert fat into energy.
Prevent anemia. The iron in it plays a role in producing energy and red blood cells. These minerals also maintain the function of the immune system and prevent the risk of anemia.
Prevents cell damage. The antioxidants in it help protect and fight the damaging effects of free radicals on body cells.
Has an anti-inflammatory effect. Consuming whole grains such as quinoa can reduce the risk of inflammatory diseases, including Crohn’s, asthma, lupus, rheumatism, to heart disease, and cancer.
Quinoa Versus Rice, Which is Better?
Rice is indeed a staple food in several countries in the world. The number of calories in these two foods is also almost equivalent. However, when viewed from its nutritional value, quinoa is much better.
Rice is a refined carbohydrate product, which means it has been processed and some of the nutrients may have been lost. In contrast, quinoa is classified as whole grain and contains more vitamins, minerals, and fiber than processed grains such as white rice.
In addition, quinoa is believed to be healthier than rice because:
1. Have a complete protein
This means that these foods contain the 9 amino acids needed but cannot be produced in the body. Meanwhile, rice does not have a complete protein.
2. More filling
This is because the fiber contained in quinoa is more. In this way, hunger can be suppressed and body weight, blood sugar levels, and cholesterol levels can also be controlled.
3. Rich in magnesium
This mineral is important in forming protein and maintaining bone structure and is said to be able to reduce the risk of stroke.
4. Have good-quality carbohydrates
The quality of these carbohydrates can be seen from their effect on blood sugar levels (glycemic index). Quinoa has a low glycemic index, meaning that consumption of this food does not increase blood sugar levels.
5. Meet the intake of nutrients in people who are on a diet
Experts say that people who follow a gluten-free diet generally lack many important nutrients. Because the original quinoa is gluten-free, this nutrient-dense food is suitable for those on a gluten-free diet.
6. High potassium minerals
Based on Sahana’s research in 2016, potassium deficiency can increase the risk of kidney stones and interfere with bone health and blood pressure.
Its high fiber, mineral, antioxidant, and amino acid content make quinoa one of the healthiest and most nutritious foods in the world.
The conclusion that can be drawn is that consuming quinoa can help control blood sugar levels and cholesterol, and even help you lose weight. In addition, these foods are also gluten-free and easy to digest.