Amaranth, nutritional properties and benefits

Amaranth, nutritional properties and benefits

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L'Amaranth, herbaceous characterized by large green leaves and elongated amaranth-colored inflorescences, it has exceptional nutritional properties especially at the protein level, it is also highly digestible and good. On the market we can easily find the seeds of Amaranthus Caudatus: they can be purchased in herbalist's shops, in organic food stores. It should be noted that theamaranth it is not a cereal even if the appearance and the food use traditionally made of it can be misleading: the cereals derive from the grass family, while theamaranth derives from a different botanical species.

Amaranth, beneficial properties

Amaranth is very rich in calcium: three times higher than that of cereals. It also has a fair amount of iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and vitamins including vitamin C which is not found in grains.
Studies conducted recently would have highlighted three important reasons for adding it to our diet.

  1. It is a rich source of protein: it is one of the seeds with the highest protein content. Among other things, proteins contain lysine, an amino acid that is found in negligible quantities in cereals. From a study conducted in 1993 by the Institute of Nutrition of Central America in the comparison between the proteins of amaranth and those of cheese, it emerges that the proteins of amaranth are among the most nutritious proteins of vegetable origin, similar to those of foods of animal origin.
  2. According to scholars, amaranth would be able to reduce cholesterol: a study conducted on animals in 1996 by the U.S. Department of Agriculture - Madison (WI) demonstrated how the oil contained in amaranth seeds had the property of significantly reducing total and LDL cholesterol in guinea pigs.
  3. It is gluten-free so it is a valid alternative to the more common gluten-free cereals for people suffering from celiac disease.

How to take amaranth

  • Amaranth seeds are ideal for flavoring bread as an alternative to sesame seeds: just put a handful of seeds in the dough
  • They can be stir-fried to make them "pop" like popcorn.
  • They can be cooked in water (or broth, milk….) To create soups, croquettes and puddings.

Vegan alternative: due to its abundance of nutritional properties and the presence of protein, it is a valid ingredient in the diet of all those people who for one reason or another decide not to eat meat anymore.

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