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Is quinoa the best super food?

Kale, chia seeds and even cauliflower have all been called a super food, but now quinoa (keen-wah) might be the next big thing, according to a new study.

This small protein-laden, gluten-free grain might just be the key to living a long and healthy life, with researchers finding the effects it has on the body.

In a study undertaken by the Harvard Public School of Health, researchers took a look at the diets of more than 350,000 people over 14 years and found that the inclusion of grains like quinoa in the diet can do wonders for one’s health.

They found that eating just one bowl of the grain can significantly reduce the risk of death from heart disease, respiratory disease and even cancer.

People who ate approximately 34 grams of the grain a day, or other whole grains, lowered their risk of premature death by 17 per cent.

But the researchers behind the study say this is just the tip of the iceberg. There is further research to go to determine how grains can impact our health and longevity.

“Our findings should motivate future studies especially clinical trials and experimental studies to further testify the beneficial effects of whole grains and potential effective components such as fibre and other nutrients, and explore mechanisms.”

They next time you’re at the supermarket looking to buy pasta or rice, swap them for quinoa. You don’t need to be able to pronounce it to give it a go. And how else can we go about incorporating more grains, like quinoa, into our diets?

  • Use quinoa as a substitute for white rice. Simply put it in the rice cooker or cook it on the stove as you normally would with rice.
  • Add cooked quinoa to salads. Quinoa has a mild nutty flavour and is a great addition to salads. It gives it a nice crunch, too.
  • Use quinoa in biscuit and muffin recipes.
  • Add it to stir-fries and curries for added crunch and extra protein.
  • Use it as an alternative to rice in sushi rolls. Yum!

What’s your favourite way to cook quinoa? Share your recipe ideas in the comments section below.

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