Want help in your weight loss journey? Then enlist amaranth, an ancient grain-like seed popular with the Aztecs many, many centuries ago.
More than just a food, amaranth can have a marked impact on your weight loss results. And on top of that, it can improve your overall health, too.
It’s a powerful food that not only tastes great and fills you up, but it can help you trim that waistline as well.
Let’s take a minute to learn a little more about this wondrous grain.
What is Amaranth?
Amaranth is a grain-like seed that looks similar to quinoa. Many populations consider it a weed, but it has been used for food, medication and even religious rituals for thousands of years.
Like quinoa, it has a high nutritional value and can be very filling either as a side dish or on its own. It’s also gluten free, and many who have eaten it say it has a sweet, yet peppery taste to it.
Though it looks like a seed, amaranth is actually the fruit of a plant. Because of this it contains more complete proteins than you’d find in rice, millet, quinoa and other grains.
How Can Amaranth Help with Weight Loss?
Amaranth can aid weight loss efforts in dozens of ways. First, because amaranth offers complete proteins, it’s able to slow down the rate at which sugar is absorbed into your bloodstream. Subsequently, this reduces your insulin levels, lowers your hunger and makes it easier to burn fat.
Amaranth also makes a better choice for getting your daily protein than, say, meat or other animal by-products. Why? Because these often come chock full of fats, cholesterols and other things that could hurt your weight loss goals.
It’s also a great source of fiber, and as I’ve said before, fiber is key when you’re losing weight. Not only does it keep your body toxin-free (and your digestive system regular), it also takes your body longer to digest. This means you’re fuller longer, and you won’t have those hard-to-fight snack cravings a few hours down the road.
Other Health Benefits of Amaranth
Amaranth offers a slew of other benefits for your health, too. It’s loaded with vitamins and minerals, including iron, magnesium, zinc, potassium, phosphorus, calcium, folate, niacin, riboflavin and vitamins A, C, E, K, B5 and B6, and it’s even been known to ward off issues like anemia and osteoporosis.
Thanks to its high fiber levels, amaranth is also great at staving off heart disease, digestive tract problems and even some types of cancer. This is thanks to the grain’s peptides, as well as high levels of antioxidants, which can help protect the cells from free radicals and other types of cancer-causing damage.
Amaranth also has anti-inflammatory properties, too. It has a number of peptides and oils in it that can both alleviate pain and fight inflammation in the body. This can be especially helpful to those who suffer from diabetes, stroke and other conditions in which inflammation can be dangerous.
The combination of fiber and phytonutrients that amaranth offers also make it great for fighting off high blood pressure. Recent studies even show it can lower cholesterol (particularly the LDL ones), and it can lower blood pressure over time.
Amaranth can impact your physical appearance, too. It has been known to prevent premature graying of the hair, and it can make your skin, nails and hair stronger.
Ways to Eat Amaranth
Amaranth can be subbed in for any sort of grain really – whether it’s rice, quinoa or another one your recipe calls for. You can also eat it as a side dish, or use it to bulk up your meal, as in a stir fry or similar dish. It’s also great in place of oatmeal or porridge, or it can make a delicious pilaf or faux-fried “rice.”
To cook it, you simply boil one cup of amaranth with three cups of water. Let it simmer for about 25 minutes, and it’s ready to serve. Feel free to add salt, pepper or any other seasonings you like. For extra flavoring, use broth instead of water when boiling.
You can also use amaranth as a sort of breading. Just put some in a pan over high heat in a skillet. Let the grain heat up, until it starts to pop (like popcorn does.) Once it’s all crisped up, use it to bread chicken, fish or even veggies (baked of course).
Amaranth is also often used as a binder in many foods – particularly gluten-free ones. You’ll find it in crackers, chips, cereals and sometimes even sweets and pastries.
Give Amaranth a Try
Have you tried amaranth yet? If you’re wanting to lose weight, you might consider trying it today. Not only does it taste great, but it can trim that waistline and help you get healthier overall. Share your thoughts on amaranth in the comments!
Remember to share this article with all your friends and family, so that they can also learn the amazing benefits amaranth has to offer.
Together we can make this world a happier, healthier world!