Quinoa is the only plant food that contains all the essential amino acids, trace elements and vitamins and contains no gluten. Essential amino acids are found in the nucleus of the grain, unlike other cereals, like rice or wheat, in which they are located in their exosperm or hull.
The unique benefits of quinoa are related to its high nutritional value. Due to the high content of essential amino acids in its protein, quinoa is considered the only plant food that provides all essential amino acids, which are extremely close to human nutrition standards established by the FAO.
A key feature of quinoa is that the grain, leaves and inflorescences are all sources of high quality protein. The nutritional quality of the grain is important due to its protein content and quality. Quinoa is rich in lysine and the sulfur amino acids, while cereal proteins are deficient in these amino acids.
The year 2013 has been declared “The International Year of the Quinoa” (IYQ), recognizing the Andean indigenous peoples, who have maintained, controlled, protected and preserved quinoa as food for present and future generations thanks to their traditional knowledge and practices of living well in harmony with mother earth and nature.
Quinoa is recognized and accepted around the world as a natural food resource with high nutritive value of Andean origin becoming a high quality food for health and food security, for present and future generations.
Source: Quinoa: An ancient crop to contribute to world food security. FAO. July 2011.