About Amaranth – Health benefits
My experience with amaranth
Amaranth is the new gluten-free trendy grain and has been used for centuries. It is a staple food of the ancient Aztecs, dating back to 8000 years ago. I discovered it a few months ago when googling for healthy whole grains. I was looking for new grains to keep me full longer and provide my body with many nutrients. It was part of my goal to get rid of a few extra pounds I had gained during this pandemic.
I set out to achieve a healthy weight without dieting. Also, I am not a fan of calorie counting. My approach to weight loss is to incorporate more nutrient-dense foods into my diet. It is the best choice for optimal health and feeling full.
I discovered a tiny grain that is amazingly effective as an appetite suppressant. It was love at first sight. Amaranth seeds are highly nutritious, gluten-free, and provide plenty of fiber, protein, and other essential micronutrients. Eating enough fiber and protein every day goes hand in hand with my goal of losing weight, as it helps me feel full and not overeat. Since then, amaranth seeds have been part of my daily diet.
If you are looking for an additional source of plant-based protein and fiber, amaranth is for you. One cup (246 g) of cooked amaranth contains 9.3 g of protein and 5.2 g of fiber.
In the beginning, I tried it with cooked amaranth. The taste was quite strange: earthy and nutty. The secret to falling in love with amaranth is to add spices or herbs to change its flavor and make it palatable. It’s worth the effort. Amaranth’s high nutrient, protein, and fiber content will keep you full for hours.
When I decided to use this wonderful grain, my imagination started working for me. The first thing I did was to replace my oatmeal with amaranth. I eat my breakfast around 7 am. The amaranth porridge keeps me full for a few hours, about 6 hours. My goal was to get rid of the snack I ate between breakfast and lunch. Hooray, mission accomplished!
The second step was to mix 2 or 3 heaping tablespoons of cooked amaranth into my post-workout snack or drink. It was an incredibly delicious idea. And, of course, so healthy.
In summary, I can say that getting started using amaranth was not difficult. The most important thing is knowing the basics and letting your imagination run wild to create delicious combinations with amaranth.
The combination I love to eat for lunch is delicious amaranth caviar. When amaranth seeds swell with water, they look like pale caviar pearls. Olive oil, a little milk, lemon juice, salt, and chopped green onions are all you need to turn the sticky pearls into delicious amaranth caviar. Then all you have to do is add whatever vegetables you like to the dish and start dipping. Check out my recipe and give it a try.
Since the first day, I added amaranth to my diet, I have noticed that my cravings for sweets have disappeared. Hooray, another victory for my weight loss goal! Amaranth is a nutritional superstar, providing our bodies with all the micronutrients they need. As a result, my cravings for sweets are gone.
The biggest challenge is eating in moderation and avoiding unhealthy sweets like cookies, soda, etc. Amaranth is a natural, healthy alternative that you can incorporate into your diet to curb your appetite and avoid snacking between meals.
Amaranth is a pseudo-grain like quinoa and buckwheat, but it is not one of the grains like rice and wheat. I recommend adding amaranth to your diet for its nutritional profile, affordability, and versatility. Give it a try. It’s nutritious and filling. For people with certain health conditions, there are some precautions you should be aware of.
First of all, these tiny seeds are the most nutritious vegetable protein. The significant advantage is that amaranth is an excellent gluten-free grain that is a good source of protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals such as potassium, manganese, selenium, zinc, and iron. Amaranth is also a good source of magnesium and phosphorus. It contains at least half of the recommended daily requirement of manganese, which aids in the metabolism of protein and other macronutrients.
This superstar food contains LUNASIN, which is believed to have cancer-preventing effects.
Let us take a closer look at the health benefits of amaranth. As part of a healthy diet, these nutrients in amaranth can significantly impact your overall health.
Some impressive reasons to add amaranth to your diet
- AMARANTH IS A NATURAL GLUTEN-FREE
Since amaranth is naturally gluten-free, it is excellent for people sensitive to gluten or who have a gluten intolerance. People who have celiac disease can eat this nutritious grain.
A gluten-sensitive diet includes grains such as quinoa, amaranth, and buckwheat.
- IT HELPS WEIGHT LOSS AND MUSCLE MASS
Some research has shown that amaranth is one of the most nutrient-dense plant proteins. The protein found in amaranth is of high quality, providing 9 grams for one cup (246 grams) of cooked grain. Protein is vital for building muscle mass and contributes to natural hormone balance, and is used in every cell of our body.
If you want to lose weight and maintain your weight, high-quality protein will keep you feeling full and not overeating at every meal. Since amaranth contains a lot of fiber, it keeps the digestive system going. Amaranth is an excellent source of plant-based protein that will keep you fuller longer. This tiny grain is one of the richest forms of protein available, with nearly twice the amount found in corn and rice. One cup (246 grams) of uncooked amaranth contains 26 grams of protein.
This superstar food is considered a complete protein and contains all nine essential amino acids that our bodies need for good health and normal function.
Amaranth is rich in LYSINE, which is not the case with most grains. This protein powerhouse is a spectacular addition to your diet and is easily absorbed by the body.
Protein is essential for maintaining muscle mass and blood flow in the body. As we age, we begin to lose muscle mass. After age 30, physically inactive people can lose between 3% and 5% of their muscle mass per decade. Even active people lose some muscle mass. Menopausal women struggle with a loss of muscle mass due to the natural decline of estrogen. Being a menopausal woman myself, I can attest from personal experience how much work it takes to maintain muscle mass and optimal weight. Switching to a healthy diet with healthy protein sources is critical during this phase of your life. Exercise and a healthy diet will help you strengthen your muscles. Regular exercise combined with healthy eating habits can be the key to optimal health.
- CAN IMPROVE DIGESTION
Due to its high fiber content, amaranth stimulates the digestive system. Referred to as “Food of immortality” by the Aztecs, Amaranth has gained popularity in the health food industry. Amaranth grains are easily digestible due to their amino acid content. It is an excellent source of high soluble fiber. Women’s recommended daily fiber intake is between 21 and 25 grams (depending on age). The high fiber content in amaranth can help your digestive system and improve or eliminate constipation, bloating, and even more severe conditions like stomach ulcers. The fiber in amaranth seeds helps increase the efficiency of nutrient absorption.
- BOOSTS THE HEART HEALTH
The high potassium content in amaranth seeds promotes heart health by relaxing blood vessels, as potassium acts as a vasodilator.
- HELPS LOWER CHOLESTEROL
Amaranth is a great choice when it comes to lowering high cholesterol naturally. This grain is a cholesterol-lowering food.
- HELPS FIGHT DIABETES
You already know that elevated insulin levels and obesity are the two main signs of diabetes. Amaranth can lower insulin levels due to its high manganese content. Just one cup (246 grams) of amaranth provides more than 100 percent of the recommended daily manganese intake. This nutritious superstar can be part of a diabetic diet. It’s a good idea to include amaranth in your diet because it does not spike blood sugar levels. Whole grains like amaranth can help people with diabetes control their blood sugar better.
- PREVENTS OSTEOPOROSIS and SUPPORTS BONE HEALTH
Amaranth is rich in manganese. Combined with nutrients such as calcium, zinc, and copper, manganese supports bone mineral density, essential for older and menopausal women. Amaranth strengthens bones by providing a large amount of calcium for our bones. Without enough calcium in the body, bones become weak and are more prone to fractures. Calcium deficiency increases the risk of osteoporosis. An adequate supply of calcium is vital at all stages of life.
- HELPS FIGHT INFLAMMATION
Amaranth is an anti-inflammatory food that can fight inflammation, the starting point for any health disorder. Inflammation is the cause of most diseases.
Amaranth is safe for general consumption. However, it should not be consumed raw because it contains oxalates and nitrates. These can be eliminated by cooking.
People with hypoglycemia need to be careful, as too much amaranth could lower insulin levels, as it has this ability.
The lysine found in amaranth increases the body’s absorption of calcium. Therefore, avoid taking large amounts of calcium supplements or lysine simultaneously.
How to include AMARANTH grains in your daily diet
- Serve amaranth instead of rice, pasta, or couscous.
- Replace your morning oats with amaranth grains by mixing them with fruit, yogurt, and nuts. A great way to incorporate this grain into your diet is at breakfast. Many people start their day with oatmeal. Try amaranth instead. It combines well with fruit and raw yogurt.
- Add amaranth to a soup for a thicker texture.
- Amaranth is a gluten-free grain and an excellent source of high-quality protein, fiber, and many micronutrients.
- Amaranth is a superfood with a nutritional profile that offers numerous health benefits.
- This protein powerhouse is a spectacular addition to your diet. The grain has an earthy, nutty flavor and a crunchy texture. It is suitable for many dishes, from breakfast to dessert. Studies have shown that the health benefits of amaranth are due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
- Amaranth can be used instead of any other grain. It is also suitable for thickening dishes.
- If you suffer from hypoglycemia, excessive consumption of amaranth could cause your blood sugar levels to spike. So start with small amounts of cooked amaranth and watch how your blood sugar reacts.
- Combine amaranth or other whole grains with different foods like unsaturated fats and healthy protein to help your body process sugar better and keep you full longer. Good sources of unsaturated fats include olive oil, avocados, and most nuts. These fats can boost your overall health, lower your cholesterol, and reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke. Some good sources of protein are nuts, seeds, and beans.
If you are looking for more healthy living inspiration, stop by! I look forward to your comments, which you can leave below!
Hugs for now,
No content on this blog should ever be used to substitute for medical advice from your practitioner or other qualified doctors.