Pass on the brown rice and quinoa and add more excitement to your dishes with these healthy grains and seeds!
The following healthy grains and seeds have elite status in the foodie world. Not only do they balance fiber with protein and offer an extensive list of nutrients that’ll keep you energized long after mealtime, they also taste really good. Enjoy!
5 Healthy Grains To Try ASAP
Amaranth was domesticated as early as 4000 BC. Like many other healthy grains, it’s incredibly high in protein and thus great for food for vegans and vegetarians. Amaranth contains more of the amino acid lysine, which helps in collagen production, than other grains and is rich in iron, magnesium, and calcium as well.
Nutritional Profile: One cup of cooked amaranth has 251 calories, 4 grams of fat, 5 grams of dietary fiber, 9 grams of protein, 12 percent of the RDA of calcium and 29 percent of the RDA of iron.
All barley has to have the hull removed in order to be edible, but pearled barley also has the bran removed, which allows it to cook faster. Among healthy grains, barley is a top source of B vitamins. Vitamin B9, known as folic acid, is particular beneficial in preventing birth defects in pregnant women.
Nutritional Profile: One cup of cooked barley contains 193 calories, 1 grams of fat, 4 grams of protein, 6 grams of dietary fiber, 2 percent of the RDA of calcium, and 12 percent of the RDA of iron.
Buckwheat is a fruit seed originally from China, that later spread to Europe and Russia. In the US, it is celebrated at the annual buckwheat festival in West Virginia. It contains all eight essential amino acids, including lysine.
Nutritional Profile: One cup of cooked buckwheat groats contains 155 calories, 1 gram of fat, 5 grams of dietary fiber, 6 grams of protein, and 7 percent of the RDA of iron.
Bulgur is the by-product of wheat kernels that have been steamed, dried, and crushed. It is a staple in the Middle Eastern diet and is available as coarse, medium, and fine. Coarse bulgur is great for pilaf or stuffing, medium-grind is for cereals, and fine bulgur is for tabbouleh. It is low in calories, along with high levels of fiber and protein.
Nutritional Profile: One cup of cooked bulgur has 151 calories, 8 grams of dietary fiber, 6 grams of protein, 2 percent of the RDA of calcium, and 10 percent of the RDA of iron.
Millet does not form acid in the body and is thus a great complement to an alkaline diet. The seed is highly digestible and gluten-free, which is ideal for celiacs. It’s also a great source of energy with plenty of protein, B-complex vitamins, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese, potassium, essential amino acids, and phytochemicals.
Nutritional Profile: One cup of cooked millet contains 207 calories, 2 grams of fat, 2 grams of dietary fiber, 6 grams of protein, and 6 percent of the RDA of iron.
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Image Credit: Alexandra Guerson