Prairie Quinoa – from South America’s “Mother Grain”, to Grown In Manitoba

The Incas of South America referred to quinoa as the “Mother Grain,” and considered it to be sacred. They grew quinoa in the high altitude of the Andes from present Educator, Peru, Bolivia, and Chile & Northern Argentina. There are 3200 varieties of quinoa in Bolivia and 2400 varieties in Peru. It is a small seed about the size of millet, very high in protein and is closer to the United Nation’s FAO ideal balance for amino acids than any other common cereal grain. It is particularly important for vegetarian diets and in correcting deficiencies in legume diets. Quinoa is high in calcium, phosphorus, iron, vitamin E and some of the B vitamins.

The health and nutritional benefits of Quinoa include:
  • Quinoa is high in protein — its protein balance is similar to milk and has more protein compared to rice, millet or wheat.
  • Quinoa is a good source of riboflavin — riboflavin helps reduce the frequency attacks in migraine sufferers by improving the energy metabolism within the brain and muscle cells.
  • The saponins from quinoa – present in minute amounts in edible quinoa – are used to promote healing of skin injuries in South America, making it a good antiseptic.
  • Quinoa is alkaline-forming, although it is not strongly alkaline-forming, it is comparable to wild rice, amaranth, and sprouted grains.
  • It only has 172 calories per ¼ cup of dry quinoa.
  • Since it is not related to wheat or grain, it’s gluten-free. Millions are discovering they feel better and lose weight when they reduce gluten grains or at least wheat products in their diet.
  • It is a complex carbohydrate with low glycemic index – again it is good for weight management.