#Superfoods: Amaranth Is The Ultimate Grain Replacement

Carbs are not a dirty word, I repeat: carbs are NOT a dirty word!

Carbohydrates are your body's preferred energy source, helping to process nutrients and maintain good gut health.

The good news is carbohydrate-rich foods like fruits, vegetables, legumes and whole-grains are a fantastic source of important nutrients like antioxidants.

The bad news is a lot of the carbs in the western diet are chockers full of sugar and refined grains.

My key takeaway message on carbs is this. You can replace many of the carbs you’re currently eating every day with healthier, more nutritious options that are far better for you!

We all know the health benefits of quinoa as a great go-to carb replacement (if not, read my previous article and discover why). Quinoa is also a dead simple grain to whip up during the busy working week.

But there’s a new grain in town taking quinoa head-on in the fight for superfood supremacy. It’s not exactly new – humans have been harvesting it since the Aztecs.

Meet Amaranth, your new grain replacement and all-round superfood. Here’s the skinny on all the good stuff inside!

Amaranth Is Gluten Free. It sure looks like a grain, but Amaranth is classified as a ‘pseudo-cereal’. Easy to cook on the stovetop, amaranth is a fabulous option to ‘bulk up’ soups and stews.

The oils and phytosterols in amaranth help lower cholesterol levels. Phytosterols are literally steroids from plants and can reduce heart disease and prevent alzheimers in the long term.

The anti-inflammatory properties of peptides and oils found amaranth can ease pain and reduce inflammation. This is especially important for chronic conditions, including diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.

The same peptides in amaranth that protect against inflammation may also help prevent cancer. The antioxidants may even help protect cells from other damage that can lead to cancer.

Cooking amaranth is comparable to cooking pasta or rice. Boil plenty of water (six cups of water per one cup of amaranth), measure the grain into it, cook and stir for 15 to 20 minutes, drain, rinse, and eat. Here are some delish recipes to get your started replacing those tired old starchy grains with something a bit sexier and South American!

Try these delicious and nutritious amaranth-based recipes and #getyourgrainon!

Mexican Ranchero Amaranth Stew

Popped Amaranth Protein Balls

Amaranth 'Risotto' with Mushroom