What are the Health Benefits of Quinoa?

Fun fact: although technically a seed, quinoa is classified as a whole grain. One cup of cooked quinoa offers around 8 grams of protein and 5 grams of fiber!

Not only that, but it comes with an array of health benefits. (And some may surprise you!)

Let’s take a look at some of the best health benefits of quinoa—our favorite edible seed and plant-based protein.

It’s Packed with Protein and Fiber

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Quinoa is a complete protein, meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids that our bodies can’t make on their own.

And, unlike other grains, quinoa also contains lysine, an essential amino acid typically found in sports supplements marketed toward those looking to add lean muscle. Lysine has also been said to strengthen the immune system and increase serotonin levels

Moreover, quinoa is high in fiber, which is great for your digestive health. Some scientists have even found that the fiber in quinoa is linked to a longer life.

It’s Rich in Antioxidants

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Antioxidants help reduce inflammation in the body and may also help prevent cell damage from free radicals, which can cause conditions such as cancer and cardiovascular disease.

Quinoa also contains quercetin and kaempferol, two flavonoids known to have anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-cancer, and anti-depressant effects.

It Helps Reduce the Risk of Colon Cancer

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Quinoa is packed with fiber—and research shows that a high-fiber diet is associated with a lower risk of colon cancer.

The main reason? Fiber moves waste through your colon faster, so any harmful substances don’t have a chance to take hold and cause cell damage that can lead to colon cancer.

It’s the Perfect Fit for a Plant-Based or Vegan Diet

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Since quinoa contains all nine essential amino acids, it’s an ideal protein choice for those looking for nonanimal sources. It is also a great source of nutrients such as iron, zinc, magnesium, folate, and vitamin B1. (All of the good stuff!)

It’s Low in Sugar

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Quinoa is low in sugar and carbohydrates, which is helpful for anyone trying to prevent or manage diabetes. It also has a low glycemic index, which measures how rapidly certain foods raise blood sugar levels. 

Foods high on the glycemic index are known to cause hunger and can lead to obesity and chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

It Helps Lower Your Diabetes Risk

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Along with its magnesium content that can help reduce your risk of Type 2 diabetes, one study shows that eating quinoa, in particular, may help reduce the risk in older adults with prediabetes.

Ultimately, eating quinoa in addition to fruits, veggies, and whole grains can significantly help prevent diabetes.

It’s a Gluten-Free Option

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If you suffer from celiac disease or choose to follow a gluten-free diet, quinoa is a great option. 

What’s more? Studies have found that opting for quinoa over typical gluten-free ingredients, such as refined tapioca, potato, corn, and rice flour, can significantly boost the amount of nutrients and antioxidants you get in your diet.

21 Healthy Quinoa Recipes You’ll Want to Make ASAP

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On the hunt for the best quinoa recipes? We don’t blame you! Quinoa—an edible seed and plant-based protein—is known for being a nutritional powerhouse and easy to incorporate into any meal needing a healthy boost.  

Check out our favorite quinoa recipes that are so delicious, you’ll forget how healthy they are!

21 Healthy Quinoa Recipes You’ll Want to Make ASAP

14 Health Benefits of Cucumbers (And a Few Refreshing Recipes)

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From healthy skin to improved memory, check out the top 14 health benefits of cucumbers!

And if you’re lucky enough to have a load from your garden or farmers market on hand, you’ll definitely want to check out some of our favorite cucumber recipes, too.

14 Health Benefits of Cucumbers (And a Few Refreshing Recipes)

5 Powerful Health Benefits of Artichokes (+ 7 Yummy Recipes!)

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Whether you’re looking for a reason to add artichokes to your diet once and for all or just another reason to keep eating them, you’ll definitely want to check out their best health benefits!

Plus, we’ve added some delightful recipes to try.

5 Powerful Health Benefits of Artichokes (+ 7 Yummy Recipes!)

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