Quinoa is one of best ‘superfood‘. It is an excellent gluten free source of protein and fibre. It is also high in minerals that people lack in the modern diets (especially magnesium, potassium, zinc and iron), high in antioxidants which neutralize free radicals and also a great source of thousands of trace nutrients which are extremely healthy, ie:

*flavonoids- which are plant antioxidants, especially:

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*quercetin- quinoa contains more of it than cranberries
*kaempferol

These molecules have been shown to have anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-depressant and anti-cancer properties.

Because quinoa has low glycemic index and as mentioned already it is loaded with protein and fibre, it is a great food for everybody, even for those who are on diet as it can increase metabolism and reduce appetite significantly.

Loaded in fibre means 100g of uncooked quinoa contains 10-16g of fibre which is more than twice as high as most grains contain. It is unfortunately insoluble fibre.

More beneficial for our health is soluble fibre and quinoa contains 1.5g of it in 100g which is still pretty good. It is also worth to mention this superfood contains a small amount of omega-3 fatty acids too.

Quinoa comes from South America, where it has been consumed for thousands of years but it became known worldwide only few years ago. It is a seed but it is eaten similarly to a grain as it counts as a whole grain food.

Quinoa is versatile, it goes well with various types of food. It tastes great and it is easy to use. Also it is easy to grow and usually grows organically so it is non-GMO.

Before cooking you should give it a good rinse to rinse out a substance called phytic acid which can reduce minerals absorption ad also to get rid of saponins which are on the outer layer and have a bitter flavour.

Then pour 1.5 glass of water into pot with 1 glass of quinoa, add pinch of salt and bring it to boil. Boil for 13 minutes without cover, after that time cover it, take if of the gas and keep covered for 10 minutes for water absorption.

Drain the rest of water if needed. Such prepared quinoa can be a base of any salad or an extra to a meal. You can eat it for any meal. Boiled with milk quinoa is a great option for breakfast instead of porridge. But today I’s like to give some ideas for tasty, healthy and colorful quinoa salads.

deliciously colorful quinoa salad

Quinoa salad

1 glass of quinoa (prepare as above)
6 green asparagus (put in to boiling water and boil for 2 minutes)
6 radish (chopped)
2 medium wine tomatoes (cut into small pieces)
1 small onion (chopped)
1 cucumber (cut in slices)
pieces of feta cheese
3 tbsp chopped chives
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp freshly squeezed  lemon juice
2 tbsp chopped parsley
0.5 piece of chopped garlic
0.5 red chilli
Mix together first 8 ingredients. Prepare a dressing from the rest of ingredients, pour it on the salad and enjoy.

Quinoa salad with chicken served with hummus and seeds

0.3-0.5 glass of quinoa (prepare as above)
1 chicken fillet (boil with a drop of olive oil)
1 red pepper (cut)
1 small onion (chopped)
handful of cocktail tomatoes (cut in halves)
0.5 tsp fennel
0.5 tsp dried oregano
fresh chopped herbs: (1 tsp of each)
*mint
*basil
*parsley
1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Mix all ingredients.
Serve on a lettuce with 1 tbsp of hummus and 1 tsp of each: sesame  seeds, chia seeds,flaxseeds.
Enjoy.

Refreshing quinoa salad

1.5 glass of quinoa (prepare as above)
2 ripe avocados (cut)
4 small cucumbers (sliced)
200g strawberries (cut)
1 small bunch of mint leaves or basil leaves (chopped)
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1.5 bag mixed leaves
Mix all ingredients. Add salt and black pepper if needed.
Enjoy.

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