Quinoa

Quinoa [keen-wah] is a grain-like crop originating from the Andean region of South America, where it has been an important food for 6,000 years. It is a pseudocereal rather than a true cereal, or grain because it is not a member of the grass family. Quinoa is closely related to species such as beets, spinach, and tumbleweeds, and is grown primarily for its edible seeds, although its leaves are also edible.

Quinoa has become highly appreciated for its nutritional value, as its protein content is very high (12%–18%). Unlike wheat or rice (which are low in lysine), quinoa contains a balanced set of essential amino acids for humans, making it an unusually complete protein source among plant foods.

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