In all the research I do in order to direct myself towards a healthier diet, there are certain foods that continue to pop up on a regular basis, so often enough that I know I’d be foolish not to try them out. One of these foods turned out to be, perhaps unsurprisingly, quinoa.
This seed (no, it’s not a grain, believe it or not!) has been a staple in the huan diet for literally thousands of years. It provides loads of protein, fiber, and other important vitamins and minerals such as manganese and iron, which are all crucial to maintaining the proper health and functioning of your body. It’s often referred to as a superfood, but the unfortunate truth is that some people end up experiencing side effects that prevent them from truly being able to enjoy the full benefits that quinoa can provide to the body.
I have recently realized that I am more than likely someone who cannot tolerate quinoa, given that I get stomach aches and nausea almost every time after I eat it – even in small amounts. Here’s what I have learned about quinoa intolerance from a helpful article by Live Strong.
Most people who end up having negative experiences after eating quinoa tend to report stomach aches, cramping, nausea, and diarrhea. Bloating and gas are also some of the more common side effects that come from eating quinoa. These physical symptoms and issues tend to be the consequence of two main issues. The first is the fact that quinoa has a very high amount of fiber per serving. If you do not normally eat much fiber every day, your body may not be able to tolerate the levels of fiber from quinoa. If eating this food leaves you with bloating and gas, the high fiber content may be to blame.
The other issue that comes up when it comes to quinoa’s negative side effects is from something called saponins. Saponins occur naturally in the outer layer of the quinoa seed and they serve mainly to repel insects.While the saponins on legumes are considered safe to eat and nutritious, the saponins found on quinoa may actually cause damage to the small intestine when ingested in large quantities. Some people are ok with simply rinsing the quinoa very thoroughly to avoid any problems, and it is possible to buy brands that are pre-rinsed, but if you get stomach aches or cramping after eating quinoa, you will more than likely want to substitute this food with brown rice or tofu.
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