We have all heard of rice, pasta and corn-most of us have actually tried to include them in our diet. There are many other grains that are a bit more obscure but definitely worth trying if you are feeling adventurous and looking to add variety and health to your diet. The best part is that they are all considered whole grain food and flours and therefore they bring the same health benefits as your usual suspects:
Buckwheat While many people think that buckwheat is a cereal grain, it is actually a fruit seed! Buckwheat is a very good source of manganese and a good source of magnesium, copper, and dietary fiber. Buckwheat contains two flavonoids with significant health-promoting actions: rutin and quercitin. The protein in buckwheat is a high quality protein, containing all eight essential amino acids, and is gluten free. Enjoy buckwheat in pancake mixes, breads and muffins or cook up a pot as part of a hearty breakfast instead of oatmeal.
Quinoa Quinoa is the seed of a dark leafy plant in the Swiss chard and spinach family. Though technically a seed, it’s often considered a grain because of its taste and texture. Quinoa is packed with protein–It’s the only “grain” that’s considered a complete protein – which is especially great for vegans and vegetarians. Quinoa is wheat and gluten-free, low on the glycemic index, and high in fiber, iron, riboflavin, magnesium and vitamin B2.
Sorghum Sorghum is a cereal grain whose usage in the United States has been on the rise, thanks to its gluten-free benefits. Sorghum kernels vary in color from white and pale yellow to deep reds, purples and browns. Sorghum’s are high in antioxidants and can be substituted for wheat flour in a variety of baked goods. Its neutral, sometimes sweet, flavor and light color make it easily adaptable to a variety of dishes. Sorghum improves the texture of recipes and digests more slowly thanks to its lower glycemic index.