1

votes

Quinoa_Is this grain safe to consume??

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created June 08, 2012 at 11:46 AM

I've read that this and all grain are bad for you and I'va also read that it's one of the most perfect foods to eat. Does anyone actually know an answer to this??

4c9076c15636143e8ad1bce3830c2012

on August 18, 2012
at 07:39 AM

That's the best comment on Paleo I have read so far mate, well done !! :-)

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on July 04, 2012
at 10:43 PM

Who obsesses over eating quinoa? Why eat it? I dunno, maybe people like it.

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on July 04, 2012
at 10:42 PM

The Inca considered it the "mother of all grains." I don't know if they got 70% of their calories from it (is that a totally arbitrary number, or does it reflect something specific?), but they ate plenty of it. Most indigenous American people did not cultivate animals, and did not eat the amount of meat commonly eaten in Europe or today worldwide. They also didn't have access to the fats/oils we take for granted--no lard, no coconut oil, no olive oil, etc. The Inca didn't fall because of their quinoa consumption.

E753cf7753e7be889ca68b1a4203483f

(722)

on June 10, 2012
at 08:06 PM

Quinoa is pretty high in phytates and saponins and according to WAPF were traditionally considered toxic unless pre soaked.

5ef574d7893bc816ec52e04139e9bc09

(6097)

on June 10, 2012
at 04:18 PM

Durr http://i.imgur.com/JzTVJ.jpg

3ab5e1b9eba22a071f653330b7fc9579

(2262)

on June 10, 2012
at 01:23 PM

Ben, women tend to need more carbs then men for health Ben, women tend to need more carbs then men for health http://www.paleoforwomen.com/carbohydrates-for-fertility-and-health/ Athletic women need even more than that, if someone had a really tight budget or higher carb needs because of athletic endeavors, I cannot condemn them for eating a little quinoa here and there. I dont eat quinoa personally, but not everyone has the options and resources that I have either

3ab5e1b9eba22a071f653330b7fc9579

(2262)

on June 10, 2012
at 01:21 PM

Ben, women tend to need more carbs then men for healthpaleoforwomen.com/…Athletic women need even more than that, if someone had a really tight budget or higher carb needs because of athletic endeavors, I cannot condemn them for eating a little quinoa here and there. I dont eat quinoa personally, but not everyone has the options and resources that I have either.

3ab5e1b9eba22a071f653330b7fc9579

(2262)

on June 10, 2012
at 01:20 PM

Ben, women tend to need more carbs then men for health http://www.paleoforwomen.com/carbohydrates-for-fertility-and-health/ Athletic women need even more than that, if someone had a really tight budget or higher carb needs because of athletic endeavors, I cannot condemn them for eating a little quinoa here and there. I dont eat quinoa personally but I cant condemn someone else because they might need to.

8508fec4bae4a580d1e1b807058fee8e

(6259)

on June 10, 2012
at 03:56 AM

Are you suggesting that quinoa that is not soaked and fermented won't irritate the gut lining - especially for those with autoimmune disease? Who are you endorsing quinoa for and in what quantities?

8508fec4bae4a580d1e1b807058fee8e

(6259)

on June 10, 2012
at 03:54 AM

Which cultures have thrived on wheat and quinoa and what percentage of their diet was those foods as opposed to meat and veggies? Americans are consuming large percentage of wheat and not thriving on it??!! I don't know of any thriving culture who got 70% of their calories from wheat and/or quinoa?

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 09, 2012
at 04:52 PM

KA24, I'm all ears: what food do you have in mind? Please go ahead and educate us.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 09, 2012
at 04:52 PM

linearly? I don't that's quite the term you're looking for. Nonetheless, what you're intimating is the reason people lose weight on LC or paleo: they don't realize that in making these new food choices they are unconsciously eating less calories than they previously were.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 09, 2012
at 04:50 PM

it's a cheap source of protein for one. starch too of course. Actually, come to think of it it's a darn near perfect little bundle of calories, no?

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 09, 2012
at 04:49 PM

ugh, it's so silly when people just hear something on a podcast once and then quote it to the world as if it's established fact. Cultures have thrived on a diet high in quinoa, high in rice, high in wheat. If one is a healthy normal person they should be able to digest what millions of other healthy normal people digest. If they can not, they have an issue in their body. The food is not to blame.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 09, 2012
at 04:48 PM

nonsense. I've never read of any culture that soaked or fermented quinoa. Rather, a simple wash, as many do with sushi rice, is all that people do. Rinse, cook, eat. You won't have any problems.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 09, 2012
at 04:46 PM

whether someone on some internet board calls quinoa a "pseudo grain" or a "grain" or an "apple" doesn't matter. Quinoa is highly nutritious. Many people eat it with no problems. Eat it and see. You'll be happy once you stop fearing something and just eat it.

707342e3cb97e0fc088917919a154b8a

(1657)

on June 08, 2012
at 05:57 PM

@Ben: You're thinking way too linearly, it may not be a caloric equivalent, but cauliflower IS a substitute for taste and mouth feel for rice, pasta and other higher carb (and non paleo) side dishes. It's also an inexpensive way to stretch out proteins.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on June 08, 2012
at 05:43 PM

Yeah, I am thinking about giving this stuff a try and in my gradual introduction of grains back into my diet. WOuld this be the place to start, as it is non-gluten and only a "pseudo grain"?

64433a05384cd9717c1aa6bf7e98b661

(15236)

on June 08, 2012
at 05:35 PM

Saponins come out with soaking

64433a05384cd9717c1aa6bf7e98b661

(15236)

on June 08, 2012
at 05:35 PM

It is a staple protein source for many cultures in S America

64433a05384cd9717c1aa6bf7e98b661

(15236)

on June 08, 2012
at 05:34 PM

Not many cheaper proteins (that include lysine)

68294383ced9a0eafc16133aa80d1905

(5795)

on June 08, 2012
at 02:09 PM

There are cheaper, more nutrient-dense sources of food available for a lot of humans. That was my point.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 08, 2012
at 01:28 PM

Quinoa is cheap and easily available for a lot of humans. THAT is the why.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 08, 2012
at 01:28 PM

Eating cauliflower in place of any grain, quinoa included, will net you way less calories. It's not a substitute at all.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 08, 2012
at 01:25 PM

Safe? I'd say any of us, or the millions of other humans both now and throughout history, can tell you it's safe. Whether you'll like it, feel good eating it, etc is more a personal issue for you. I don't think cooked quinoa has anything inherently deleterious to you.

7d64d3988de1b0e493aacf37843c5596

(2861)

on June 08, 2012
at 01:04 PM

Nobody knows. The idea that grains are bad for you is just a premise for the Paleo diet. Phytates, lectins, and whatever are just speculation. I do kind of doubt though that a grain would be a “perfect food.” Grains are cheap filler calories.

Frontpage book

Get FREE instant access to our Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!

9 Answers

3
7cf9f5b08a41ecf2a2d2bc0b31ea6fa0

on June 08, 2012
at 12:44 PM

CHRIS PITTS, seriously, do some research about paleo before asking these basic questions, it's clear from this and you're other posts that you've done none

Start here http://www.marksdailyapple.com/definitive-guide-primal-blueprint/#axzz1xCmn6af5

5ef574d7893bc816ec52e04139e9bc09

(6097)

on June 10, 2012
at 04:18 PM

Durr http://i.imgur.com/JzTVJ.jpg

3
C6e32ff9978fe287aa8c1c6be52d9524

(1548)

on June 08, 2012
at 12:14 PM

Quinoa still has phytic acid content to it. Rendering it potential to bind to vital minerals (like zinc and magnesium) making it undigestable. That's one of the largest issue with grains (aside gut disturbances).

Quinoa, from last time I did research, is one of the lesser of defenders (gluten free, part of the spinach family, better in protein quality, etc.) It (neither any grain) still doesn't beat meat (that sounded funny!) in nutrient density, though. At the end of the day, I'll stick with a big steak or burger.

If you are going to eat it, I wouldn't eat it religiously, however I would soak it and prepare it for 12+ hours to release some of the phytates in it and increase its nutrient bioavailability.

2
3ab5e1b9eba22a071f653330b7fc9579

on September 07, 2013
at 12:44 AM

It has saponins, which are like the toxins in grains, they are meant to prevent it from being eaten, these can, of course, be removed, through proper cleaning. My personal opinion of it is that it is high in carbs, which is good if you have higher carb needs, but I would not eat too often. Also if you are trying to stretch a budget I see how it could be helpful as well.

Try making cauliflower "rice" instead, shred a whole head of cauliflower with a cheese grater and cook lightly in butter

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 09, 2012
at 04:52 PM

linearly? I don't that's quite the term you're looking for. Nonetheless, what you're intimating is the reason people lose weight on LC or paleo: they don't realize that in making these new food choices they are unconsciously eating less calories than they previously were.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 08, 2012
at 01:28 PM

Eating cauliflower in place of any grain, quinoa included, will net you way less calories. It's not a substitute at all.

707342e3cb97e0fc088917919a154b8a

(1657)

on June 08, 2012
at 05:57 PM

@Ben: You're thinking way too linearly, it may not be a caloric equivalent, but cauliflower IS a substitute for taste and mouth feel for rice, pasta and other higher carb (and non paleo) side dishes. It's also an inexpensive way to stretch out proteins.

3ab5e1b9eba22a071f653330b7fc9579

(2262)

on June 10, 2012
at 01:21 PM

Ben, women tend to need more carbs then men for healthpaleoforwomen.com/…Athletic women need even more than that, if someone had a really tight budget or higher carb needs because of athletic endeavors, I cannot condemn them for eating a little quinoa here and there. I dont eat quinoa personally, but not everyone has the options and resources that I have either.

3ab5e1b9eba22a071f653330b7fc9579

(2262)

on June 10, 2012
at 01:20 PM

Ben, women tend to need more carbs then men for health http://www.paleoforwomen.com/carbohydrates-for-fertility-and-health/ Athletic women need even more than that, if someone had a really tight budget or higher carb needs because of athletic endeavors, I cannot condemn them for eating a little quinoa here and there. I dont eat quinoa personally but I cant condemn someone else because they might need to.

3ab5e1b9eba22a071f653330b7fc9579

(2262)

on June 10, 2012
at 01:23 PM

Ben, women tend to need more carbs then men for health Ben, women tend to need more carbs then men for health http://www.paleoforwomen.com/carbohydrates-for-fertility-and-health/ Athletic women need even more than that, if someone had a really tight budget or higher carb needs because of athletic endeavors, I cannot condemn them for eating a little quinoa here and there. I dont eat quinoa personally, but not everyone has the options and resources that I have either

2
Medium avatar

(1536)

on June 08, 2012
at 01:40 PM

You have started coming to Paleohacks and asking questions. Awesome. But have you done any real research into the paleo way of eating before you started asking questions? If not, cool, it is the typical American thing to ask questions and be spoonfed the answers w/out performing any of the real research yourself. End rant.

A lot of people are going to come down pretty hard on you for asking this question. So I'm going to respond with a little bit more of an open mind.

I think hardcore paleo eaters are just as bad as the pot smoking, hippie, vegan crowd. They are pretentious and think that their diet is premier. Take the paleo diet as a framework for determining what works best for you. Do a 30 day paleo challenge. Eliminate all grains, legumes, and dairy. See how you feel. If you want, add back some of the "safer" whole foods that aren't considered paleo. I'd suggest adding back one food at a time and seeing how you react. Since going paleo for 4 months, I have added quinoa and rice with no negative side effects. I've also added fermented soy and properly prepared beans. I'm an avid endurance athlete so these higher carb foods have actually made me feel a lot better. My sleep is better than it was during my low carb/high fat paleo kick (3-4 hours per night and now I'm sleeping 7-8 hours) and my recovery between workouts is pretty awesome. The paleo diet is an awesome experiment into what is the best form of fuel for you. What works for some of these people might not work for you. You also have to ask yourself who is responding to these questions and what are their goals for paleo. Everyone comes into paleo for their own reasons: Lose weight, get healthy, become a crossfit super athlete, increase libido, blah blah blah. And some people answer the questions with their own personal agendas behind the scenes.

In summary (b/c this isn't already too freakin' long), do a 30 day strict paleo diet. Assess how you feel. Determine your goals. Go from there. In all, if you are eating whole unprocessed food, regardless if it's rice, quinoa, sweet potatoes, celery, etc.. you're doing better than the average fat guy munching doritos and twinkies

4c9076c15636143e8ad1bce3830c2012

on August 18, 2012
at 07:39 AM

That's the best comment on Paleo I have read so far mate, well done !! :-)

2
68294383ced9a0eafc16133aa80d1905

(5795)

on June 08, 2012
at 12:40 PM

The issue with the digestion is one thing. However, that can also be applied to many other foods that are considered "Paleo." That has to do with the individual. If you notice issues with them, don't eat them. Regardless of whether others approve of them or not.

The biggest issue with Quinoa is...WHY??? The short answer, and one most people who can't fully give up their grains hate to hear is that there are many other foods I would rather eat than Quinoa that taste better, are more nutrient-dense and have no side effects at all in-terms of blood sugar, digestion, etc. So why eat the Quinoa?

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 08, 2012
at 01:28 PM

Quinoa is cheap and easily available for a lot of humans. THAT is the why.

64433a05384cd9717c1aa6bf7e98b661

(15236)

on June 08, 2012
at 05:34 PM

Not many cheaper proteins (that include lysine)

68294383ced9a0eafc16133aa80d1905

(5795)

on June 08, 2012
at 02:09 PM

There are cheaper, more nutrient-dense sources of food available for a lot of humans. That was my point.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 09, 2012
at 04:52 PM

KA24, I'm all ears: what food do you have in mind? Please go ahead and educate us.

1
8508fec4bae4a580d1e1b807058fee8e

on June 08, 2012
at 05:30 PM

Robb Wolf mentions in a podcast something like how quinoa is one of the latest vegan fads and supposed superfoods.

I like Tim Ferriss's take: http://www.fourhourworkweek.com/blog/2010/09/19/paleo-diet-solution/

"Quinoa pops up frequently and the refrain goes like this, ???Robb! Have you tried this stuff Quinoa (the pronunciation varies depending on how big a hippy you are). It???s NOT a grain! It???s fine, right????

Well, you???ve likely heard the expression, ???If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck?????? Quinoa is botanically not a grain, but because it has evolved in a similar biological niche, Quinoa has similar properties to grains, including chemical defense systems that irritate the gut. In the case of Quinoa, it contains soap-like molecules called saponins. Unlike gluten, which attaches to a carrier molecule in the intestines, saponins simply punch holes in the membranes of the microvilli cells. Yes, that???s bad. Saponins are so irritating to the immune system that they are used in vaccine research to help the body mount a powerful immune response. The bottom line is if you think grains or grain-like items like Quinoa are healthy or benign, you are not considering the full picture."

8508fec4bae4a580d1e1b807058fee8e

(6259)

on June 10, 2012
at 03:54 AM

Which cultures have thrived on wheat and quinoa and what percentage of their diet was those foods as opposed to meat and veggies? Americans are consuming large percentage of wheat and not thriving on it??!! I don't know of any thriving culture who got 70% of their calories from wheat and/or quinoa?

64433a05384cd9717c1aa6bf7e98b661

(15236)

on June 08, 2012
at 05:35 PM

Saponins come out with soaking

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 09, 2012
at 04:49 PM

ugh, it's so silly when people just hear something on a podcast once and then quote it to the world as if it's established fact. Cultures have thrived on a diet high in quinoa, high in rice, high in wheat. If one is a healthy normal person they should be able to digest what millions of other healthy normal people digest. If they can not, they have an issue in their body. The food is not to blame.

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on July 04, 2012
at 10:42 PM

The Inca considered it the "mother of all grains." I don't know if they got 70% of their calories from it (is that a totally arbitrary number, or does it reflect something specific?), but they ate plenty of it. Most indigenous American people did not cultivate animals, and did not eat the amount of meat commonly eaten in Europe or today worldwide. They also didn't have access to the fats/oils we take for granted--no lard, no coconut oil, no olive oil, etc. The Inca didn't fall because of their quinoa consumption.

0
E753cf7753e7be889ca68b1a4203483f

on June 09, 2012
at 09:32 AM

Quinoa needs to be soaked and/or fermented before boiling. It's loaded with anti nutrients and irritants like many whole grains.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 09, 2012
at 04:48 PM

nonsense. I've never read of any culture that soaked or fermented quinoa. Rather, a simple wash, as many do with sushi rice, is all that people do. Rinse, cook, eat. You won't have any problems.

8508fec4bae4a580d1e1b807058fee8e

(6259)

on June 10, 2012
at 03:56 AM

Are you suggesting that quinoa that is not soaked and fermented won't irritate the gut lining - especially for those with autoimmune disease? Who are you endorsing quinoa for and in what quantities?

E753cf7753e7be889ca68b1a4203483f

(722)

on June 10, 2012
at 08:06 PM

Quinoa is pretty high in phytates and saponins and according to WAPF were traditionally considered toxic unless pre soaked.

0
474ae29b80569199c6589e879e6cd7d1

on June 08, 2012
at 01:50 PM

Quinoa baffles me. Why and how did it become so popular? Why is it a societally endorsed super food? Even if you aren't specifically affected by grains, why obsess over eating Quinoa? As it pertains to me, grains seem to be relatively innocuous, at least in the short-to-mid-term. That being said, why eat them? And, if you are going to eat them, may as well make it something appealing, say beer or a pretzel dog? If you are going to eat something that has negative attributes, you may as well at least derive maximum taste enjoyment.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on June 09, 2012
at 04:50 PM

it's a cheap source of protein for one. starch too of course. Actually, come to think of it it's a darn near perfect little bundle of calories, no?

64433a05384cd9717c1aa6bf7e98b661

(15236)

on June 08, 2012
at 05:35 PM

It is a staple protein source for many cultures in S America

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on July 04, 2012
at 10:43 PM

Who obsesses over eating quinoa? Why eat it? I dunno, maybe people like it.

-2
44f0901d5b0e85d8b00315c892d00f8a

on June 08, 2012
at 02:10 PM

i don't think grain are bad for health :)

Answer Question


Get FREE instant access to our
Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!