Buckwheat is now experiencing its rebirth. This cereal, which we have become accustomed to since childhood, has recently become more and more fashionable and takes pride of place in the most popular nutrition programs. And this is not surprising – with so many useful properties as hers, it is difficult to remain unnoticed by fans of a healthy lifestyle.
In the article, I want to dwell separately on the beneficial properties of buckwheat and figure out with you in which cases it really should be included in the menu, and in which it is better to abstain.
Distribution history and types
Buckwheat has been familiar to man for a very long time. It is believed that it was first used for food five thousand years ago in the Himalayas, where it originally grew. Gradually, people realized that this cereal has many medicinal properties, they began to cultivate it more and more, and as a result, it spread throughout the world. So this plant came to the territory of Russia from Greece, which is clear from its name adopted in our language.
Buckwheat is usually classified into the following types:
- unground or whole grain;
- threaded or grain that has a broken structure;
- Smolensk groats – highly crushed buckwheat;
- buckwheat flour.
Chemical composition and nutritional value
So what substances are buckwheat rich in, why people regularly use it for food for several thousand years? Thanks to modern research, we know for sure that this cereal contains:
- vitamins of group B, A, E;
- fatty acid;
- citric and malic acid;
- fiber and many other trace elements.
More than half (58%) of buckwheat consists of carbohydrates. It also contains proteins – 13%. But the fat in the cereal is only 3%, and its calorie content is average – about 300 kcal per 100 grams.
Given the composition of cereals, it becomes clear that with its regular use, the following results can be achieved:
- cleanse the body of toxins and toxins;
- strengthen blood vessels;
- improve heart function;
- lower cholesterol levels;
- normalize blood glucose;
- improve immunity;
- reduce the risk of anemia;
- get enough protein and amino acids for the normal functioning of the body;
- increase endurance;
- minimize the impact of stress.
Benefits for women
The female body needs buckwheat to replenish the iron deficiency that can occur due to monthly bleeding. Also, this product allows you to maintain hair, skin and nails in good condition, fight premature aging.
Buckwheat helps to stop the development of varicose veins and strengthens bone tissue.
No less appreciated by the fair sex is the fact that cereals are perfect for a dietary menu. It does not contain so many calories, it cleanses the body of toxins and speeds up the metabolic process, which means it contributes to faster weight loss.
Benefits for Pregnant Women and Nursing Mothers
During pregnancy, buckwheat can become a reliable assistant for the female body. She will compensate for the lack of vitamins and nutrients during this important period, give the woman additional strength and energy, and due to the high content of folic acid and proteins, the fetus will develop without pathologies.
Allergy to buckwheat in babies is very rare, so a young mother may well eat buckwheat during lactation. Thus, both she and the child will receive the necessary dose of vitamins and nutrients required for the development of muscles, bones and the nervous system of the baby.
Attention! To completely eliminate the risk of allergies or other unwanted reactions in your baby, consult a pediatrician about using buckwheat.
Benefits for men
Men who are actively involved in sports or simply have regular physical activity will appreciate buckwheat, because it makes the body more enduring, strengthens muscles and quickly satisfies the feeling of hunger.
Due to the fact that buckwheat improves blood circulation, it reduces the risk of stroke and heart attack, which are most often affected by the representatives of the stronger sex.
Also, the product is able to improve potency and reduce the risk of prostate inflammation.
Benefits for children
Buckwheat is not only a permitted product, but also recommended for baby food. You can start complementary foods with her already from 9-10 months of a baby’s life, even if he is still breastfed. Groats will help the baby get the necessary acids and minerals, strengthen bone tissue, improve memory and attention.
Interesting fact: one of the distinguishing characteristics of this cereal is the absence of gluten in it, which means that the risk of developing allergies is very low.
Benefits for athletes and weight loss
Buckwheat will become a real help for those who regularly play sports. Its amino acids are essential for strengthening muscle tissue and bones. Vitamins give you energy and you won’t feel overwhelmed even after an intense workout. With such an energy value, there is very little fat in the croup, which means that it does not harm the figure.
All these qualities make buckwheat useful for those who follow a diet for weight loss. It helps not only to get rid of the feeling of hunger, but also gives a feeling of fullness – and this is exactly what is so difficult for anyone trying to reduce the amount of calories they eat.
If you want to arrange a fasting day for yourself, then I recommend that you make buckwheat porridge for breakfast, although if you wish, you can use it as a main course for lunch and dinner. To diversify the menu and add flavor, combine cereals with fresh or steamed vegetables, as well as yogurt or kefir. Thus, your menu will remain sufficiently nutritious, but at the same time it will be lighter and less nutritious.
On our website you can find recipes for such dishes with this cereal as, for example, classic porridge or buckwheat soup.
Is it ok to eat every day
I think many of us wondered: is it possible to eat buckwheat every day? In theory, yes. It does not contain harmful fats and cholesterol, while vitamins, on the contrary, are more than enough. But in reality, as with all products, you need to remember the measure. Try to combine and alternate buckwheat with other types of cereals, with vegetables and fruits, so that your body gets the maximum possible amount of vitamins and minerals.
It is believed that the daily rate of buckwheat for an adult is no more than 200 grams. At the same time, if possible, it is preferable to use it in the morning to activate metabolism and get enough energy for the rest of the day.
Useful properties of green and sprouted buckwheat
We are used to the fact that buckwheat has a dark brown color. Not everyone, perhaps, knows, but this shade of kernel gets when frying. If not thermally treated, it will retain its natural green tint. Recently, such buckwheat has become easy to find in stores. It is believed that it contains more nutrients – after all, it was not affected by high temperatures.
Most often, green buckwheat is recommended for cleansing the body of toxins, because it retains more fiber than fried cereals.
The method of preparing green buckwheat does not differ from the usual one: pour boiling water over it and cook until tender for 15-20 minutes.
However, if you wish, you can also use the so-called steaming method. Buckwheat should be poured with hot water and left for several hours until it becomes soft. Then you can add milk, salt and a little butter to the dish.
Also green groats are suitable for germination. Buckwheat sprouts help to cope with constipation, increase appetite and regulate metabolism.
Sprouted kernels are best added to a vegetable salad or used on their own as a side dish to ease the liver and speed up the digestion process.
Harm and contraindications
Unfortunately, in some cases, the use of buckwheat is not recommended. We are talking about such diseases as:
- acute pancreatitis;
- renal failure;
- exacerbation of gastritis or stomach ulcers;
- allergic to this type of cereal.
You should be careful not to abuse buckwheat if you have a tendency to constipation or increased gas formation.
How to choose and store
In order to choose the right buckwheat, it is enough to adhere to simple rules:
- Pay attention to the packaging: it must be sealed and not damaged.
- Choose cereals of the same size, without husks and other debris.
- The cereal should not have an unpleasant rancid odor.
- It is better to store the product in a well-closed container, in a dry and dark place.
Buckwheat is a real storehouse of nutrients, so try to find a permanent place for it in your family’s diet, especially since this cereal can be used in a variety of dishes.