Famous People Love Quinoa. Why is it so Popular, and what is it?

Famous People Love Quinoa. Why is it so Popular, and what is it?

Few meals are as well-liked among health enthusiasts as quinoa. Nutritionists regularly suggest it, and celebrities like Eva Mendes, Zoe Saldana, and Katy Perry have all openly declared their love for it. It’s a mainstay on the menu of any health-conscious restaurant.

Furthermore, the market for quinoa reached an astounding $382 million last year and is predicted to rise even more, despite the fact that it hasn’t garnered the same popularity as other whole grains yet. According to Dr. Uma Naidoo, director of nutritional and lifestyle psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital and the nutritional biologist behind “Calm Your Mind with Food,” who received her training at Harvard, “quinoa is delicious, nutritious, and versatile. It has gained popularity over the last few decades as a high protein, gluten-free, whole-grain base for many dishes.”

What is the Quinoa Plant?

The edible seed quinoa is available in black, red, yellow, and white hues, according to the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. According to Naidoo, it is indigenous to the Andean area of South America and has been grown for over 5,000 years.

It is believed to be an excellent source of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, iron, phosphorus, manganese, vitamin B1, and magnesium. It may be picked both mechanically and by hand.

Quinoa is sometimes promoted as a high-protein food, however Abby Langer, a clinical nutritionist, registered dietitian, and CEO of Abby Langer Nutrition, says, “I don’t consider it to be a high quality source of protein as it contains only 8 grams per cup.” “Considering that most healthy people should be consuming 25-30 grams of protein at each meal, the volume of quinoa we’d have to eat to achieve that would be huge,” she says.

Additional benefits that quinoa is known to have include its versatility and the fact that it doesn’t take long to prepare. “It takes only about 15 minutes to cook, and it can be the base of a nourish bowl, a porridge such as oatmeal, a side dish, or an ingredient in recipes like stuffed peppers,” says Jill Weisenberger, MS, RDN, a Virginia-based registered dietician of “Prediabetes: A Complete Guide.”

Is it a Grain or Rice, Quinoa?

The classification of quinoa is one area of uncertainty. “Though quinoa is a technically a seed, we classify it as a whole grain because its nutrient profile is similar to other whole grains,” says Weisenberger.

In contrast to several other whole grains including barley, rye, and wheat, quinoa is devoid of gluten. Moreover, it manages blood sugar better than processed carbohydrates like white rice. “Because it contains protein, fiber and micronutrients, quinoa has less of an impact on you blood sugar,” says Naidoo.

Is it OK to Eat Quinoa Every Day?

Weisenberger praises quinoa as “super nutritious,” and as a good source of dietary fiber and the aforementioned vitamins and minerals, but she suggests keeping caloric content in mind when eating it regularly. “Like other grains, a cup of cooked quinoa has about 225 calories, so portion control will be important for anyone watching their weight,” she advises.

Similar to this, Naidoo highlights the health advantages of quinoa, but she also emphasizes that “even relatively healthy foods are meant to be eaten in moderation and as part of an overall balanced diet.” In light of this, she advises consuming quinoa “a few times a week” and combining it with other healthful dishes. “Focus on adding in satiating fiber-rich vegetables, leafy greens, healthy fats such as olive oil, avocado, nuts, seeds and plenty of lean proteins,” she suggests.

Sanchita Patil

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