Why all coeliacs should eat quinoa

May 21, 2018 6:35 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Are you coeliac? Or otherwise following a gluten-free diet? If so, you need to get some quinoa into your diet now!

Of course, you might already be doing so. Perhaps you’re one of the hundreds of customers who buy quinoa from Naturally Good Food regularly, in grain form, in puffs or flakes, or as a breakfast cereal, crispbread, type of pasta or flour. Many of our dairy-free customers are fond of our quinoa ‘milk’, too.

Coeliacs should really include quinoa in their diets

Quinoa is an ideal part of a gluten-free diet           Image: @the5th

However, if you’re just starting off on a gluten-free lifestyle, or trying hard to improve your existing gluten-free diet, then quinoa might be a completely new foodstuff to you. We’d like to explain why you should make it an integral part of your diet – and show you how easily you can do so.

Quinoa is naturally gluten-free

Quinoa is the seed of a plant that’s related to spinach (and to amaranth – another gluten-free grain). It’s entirely, 100%, naturally gluten-free. It hasn’t had gluten ‘extracted’ from it; it hasn’t been processed; it hasn’t undergone any particular, painstaking treatment. It’s a simple, pure grain that you can eat without any fear of ill-effects.

Quinoa is naturally gluten-free

Quinoa is a natural gluten-free option     Image: Grupo Colombio

Gluten-free diets can be difficult to manage, especially when you’re first starting off. It can be tempting to rely on the mass-produced, processed options in supermarkets; we sell a number of gluten-free mixes ourselves, and recognise what a lifesaver they are in many ways. However, we’re also keen to encourage people to eat naturally gluten-free foodstuffs. Where there’s an absolute minimum of processing, a product will always be fresher, tastier and richer in vitamins and minerals. With natural products, nothing has been stripped out and no unusual ingredients have been added back in. There won’t be strange chemical-sounding additives, or excess sugar or salt to boost the taste.

Quinoa is a complete protein

We’re also keen to promote quinoa because it’s a good source of protein. It is, in fact, a ‘complete protein’, containing all of the nine essential amino acids that our bodies need to source from food –in one mouthful! If you’re excluding gluten (which is itself a protein), you need to make sure that your diet is rich in protein in other ways. That’s especially true if you’re not only gluten-free, but also vegan. Meat is a complete protein, as are eggs and dairy products, but seeds, nuts and pulses are not – you have to combine them, throughout the day, to take in the full complement of amino acids. Eating quinoa – one single complete protein – is a really good way to make this easy.

Rich in vitamins, minerals and fibre

High in fibre, rich in vitamins and minerals

Quinoa is a highly nutritious grain  Image: Vi..Cult…

Quinoa is also high in fibre – another element that can easily be missing from a gluten-free diet if you’re eating a lot of processed, branded, gluten-free food. Keep everything moving healthily along by incorporating this, and other wholegrains, into your diet regularly. You’ll also reap the benefits of quinoa’s range of vitamins and minerals, including its complement of calcium, iron, manganese and magnesium.

How should I eat quinoa?

We think one of the very best ways to eat quinoa is as a whole grain: simply boiled, as you would for rice. We’ve got instructions here on the perfect way to cook this grain: it’s extremely easy! You can use boiled quinoa as a base for all kinds of meals, with meat, fish, vegetables or pulses.

Quinoa puffs, meanwhile, make a great alternative to wheat-based cereal and can be used in baking too. Quinoa flakes are a good gluten-free porridge option and make wonderful flapjacks and energy bars as well.

Quinoa pasta (we’ve got a good range of options) is a high-fibre, high-protein alternative to standard pasta, while our quinoa crispbreads make a tasty snack. Quinoa drink, a dairy-free ‘milk’ sweetened with agave, is popular with many of our customers too.

We’ve got a full selection of gluten-free food, which you can see here. For all our quinoa, click here.

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This post was written by Yzanne

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