Food for thought: Grains - Buckwheat
by FoodMaestro | 17 May 2016
What is Buckwheat?
Buckwheat has numerous health benefits and it’s both tasty and easy to prepare. Known as a pseudo-cereal as it’s not a true cereal grain (like other grasses) but yet the seeds can be ground into flour and used like a cereal. Other examples of pseudo-cereals are amaranth, millet and quinoa. Buckwheat comes in various colours but you are most likely to come across the dark brown variety rather than the green and red. Buckwheat has been a source of essential nutrients, vitamins, energy and fibre for humans for over 8000 years but it is most commonly eaten in Asia and Eastern Europe.
Why choose Buckwheat?
Buckwheat is easy to work with and comes in many forms and is perfect for making porridge, granola, risotto or salads and the flour form is perfect for baking with.
Buckwheat is high in essential nutrients and can aid digestion:
1. High in fibre, helps to slow down the rate of glucose absorption
2. Rich in bound antioxidants (like glutathione and superoxide dismutase) which, fortunately, survive the cooking process. D-chiro insitol is an exciting compound that may improve many important elements of blood sugar metabolism such as production of glycogen and insulin. This means that buckwheat can be especially important to people with type 2 diabetes and pre-diabetes and anyone else trying to maintain blood sugar levels.
Rich in many trace minerals, including manganese, magnesium, copper and good source of the B vitamins: B6, pantothenic acid, niacin, folate, thiamin and choline.
Allergic or special diet, can I eat it?
Buckwheat does not contain gluten and is safe for those with coeliac disorder. For those wanting to maintain even sugar levels, buckwheat is one of the healthier carbs.
Where to source?
You can actually find buckwheat in almost any supermarket. Search with the FoodMaestro app for buckwheat foods such as noodles and gluten-free cereal groats, or foods containing buckwheat flour.
Try something new!
If you have never cooked or made buckwheat before, it’s easier than you might think to prepare something delicious and it is very versatile.
See our recipe for Buckwheat Porridge