One of the most enjoyable parts of learning about nutrition that I came across when studying nutrition was learning about each food individually and all of the wonderful health benefits they each contain. So when we are eating the food we can know exactly what wonderful thing it is doing for our body!
Today is all about BUCKWHEAT!
Buckwheat is a triangular seed. When toasted it is called Kasha. It is thought to have originated in Centra Asia. Even though the name suggests it – it is a gluten free crop. It’s not necessarily a grain – rather it is the fruit, or seed, of a leafy plant in the rhubarb family! Here are a few cool things about buckwheat you might not know:
- its contains protein
- contains a good amount of lysine ( not in most other plant foods – helps the body absorb calcium, formation of collagen. Important for bones, tissues, ligaments skin, tendons, and cartilage )
- good source of iron, magnesium, and niacin
- reduces risk of anemia
- protects against asthma
- improves bone health
- reduces risk for gallstones
- helps prevent cardiovascular disease
- helps in preventing and managing diabetes
- reduces risk of breast and colon cancers
- helps lower LDL cholesterol
A great way to incorporate buckwheat into your routine is to add it to your oatmeal. Do half parts oats, to have parts buckwheat. It makes for a nice added slightly crunchy texture. For the sake of even easier digestion – buckwheat can be soaked overnight and rinsed in the morning. Don’t be alarmed if the soaking liquid is slightly gelatin like – just drain, rinse thoroughly, and add to your cooking pot. Buckwheat takes about 10 minutes to cook in this way.
A simple recipe is to make your oatmeal as you normally do, just replace part of the oats with buckwheat! That’s it!
Other ideas: buckwheat can be made into a flour and used to make pancakes, crepes, muffins and breads, as well as in salads!