How to Lose Weight With Quinoa

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Quinoa is a nutrient-rich whole grain, similar to brown rice.
Quinoa is a nutrient-rich whole grain, similar to brown rice. (Image: Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Getty Images)

Although your total calorie intake is most important for successful weight loss, the food you choose for your meal plan affects your calorie intake. Quinoa is a whole grain that is rich in fiber and protein, both of which are beneficial for healthy weight management. A 2009 review published in the “Journal of Nutrition” reports protein increases satiety and energy expenditure, which aids in weight loss. High intake of dietary fiber, which is abundant in quinoa, enhances weight loss and reduces your risk for obesity, according to a 2009 article published in “Nutrition Reviews.” Incorporate quinoa into your diet to increase your chances of weight-loss success.

Choose an individualized, reduced-calorie meal plan to effectively lose weight. If you’re an inactive woman weighing less than 165 pounds, pick a 1,000- to 1,200-calorie plan. If you’re a woman who exercises regularly or a female who weighs more than 164 pounds, choose a meal plan containing 1,200 to 1,600 calories daily, suggests the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. If you're a man, choose a low-calorie diet with at least 1,200 to 1,600 calories daily -- but adjust your intake based on your activity level, notes Weight-Control Information Network. Aim to lose 1 to 2 pounds weekly, suggests the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Add quinoa to your daily meal plan to increase satiety and aid with weight loss. Your allotment for grains varies by calorie intake.Coonsume 3 to 5 ounces of grains daily for meal plans of 1,000 to 1,600 calories a day. Eat up to 1.5 cups of cooked quinoa daily when following a 1,000-calorie meal plan, 2 cups of quinoa for 1,200-calorie weight-loss diets, and up to 2.5 cups of cooked quinoa daily when eating 1,600 calories a day for weight loss, according to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010 and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Exercise regularly, with your doctor’s permission, to enhance your quinoa-inspired weight-loss program. Quinoa, rich in complex carbohydrates, is your body’s main source of energy, especially during exercise. Work out 45 to 60 minutes at least five days per week for best results, suggests a 2009 review published in “The Ochsner Journal.” Lift weights regularly to help decrease body fat and reduce your risk for chronic disease, according to a 2009 review in “Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise.”

Tips & Warnings

  • Since the nutritional content between Quinoa and brown rice is very similar, they can be interchangeable in most diet plans.
  • Check with your doctor before starting an exercise program.

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