Tuesday, June 05, 2007

The baby making grain

Quinoa (pronounced keen-wa) is an amino acid-rich (protein) seed that has a fluffy, creamy, slightly crunchy texture and a somewhat nutty flavor when cooked. Quinoa is available in your local health food stores throughout the year. Most commonly considered a grain, quinoa is actually a relative of leafy green vegetables like spinach and Swiss chard. It is a recently rediscovered ancient "grain" once considered "the gold of the Incas." Not only is quinoa high in protein, but the protein it supplies is complete protein, meaning that it includes all nine essential amino acids. Quinoa's amino acid profile well-balanced, making it a good choice for vegans concerned about adequate protein intake. Quinoa is especially well-endowed with the amino acid lysine, which is essential for tissue growth and repair. In addition to protein, quinoa features a host of other health-building nutrients. Because it's a very good source of manganese as well as a good source of magnesium, iron, copper and phosphorous, this "grain" may be especially valuable for persons with migraine headaches, diabetes and atherosclerosis.

While teaching a cooking class about health and vitality about a year ago, this woman told me a GREAT story about her father who was in his 70's at the time this happened. They are Chilean, and the father was coming into the US. He had just fathered a baby and was trying to bring the baby with him into the US, but Customs denied permission saying he couldn't possibly be the father due to his age. He told them, "I am not like Americans. I do not eat hamburgers. I'm from CHILE. We eat QUINOA!"

1 comment:

carolinagal said...

how funny!