Is Quinoa Really Fattening?

Every couple of months, out of nowhere, a new craze takes over the nutrition sphere and another food is deemed to be “fattening” until a few months later this craze is debunked and the world returns to normal. The newest victim of the nutrition world’s witch-hunting is quinoa. So, I will become the witness, the prosecutor and the judge in this tribunal to answer the question: Is quinoa fattening?

But before answering this question, we need to define what is the in first figure out what is “fattening” and “weight gain”.

The Basics of Weight

Weight gain is actually a very simple process to understand. The fat your body stores is its energy reserve, which you’ve accumulated when you have eaten more than you have burned throughout the day. So in order to deplete your fat stores, you should do exactly the opposite – burn more than you consume. 

There are many ways to burn more calories than you consume, such as using natural weight loss supplements like Tea Burn and exercising, but in terms of food you can lower your caloric consumption by eating foods that contain less calories. 

So, now that we understood how weight loss works, let’s go back to quinoa!

Quinoa’s nutrition:

Calories per 100 gram dry: 368
Protein: 14.1 grams
Fat: 6.1 grams
Carbs: 64.2

Surprisingly enough, Quinoa is higher protein that most other grains, which makes it more filling than many other side dishes like pasta. Also, it takes your body more energy to digest quinoa, since protein is a hard micro element for our body to digest. Basically what it comes down to, in that your burn more calories digesting quinoa than you do digesting a processed food such as pasta.

Quinoa also ranks relatively low in the Glycemic Index, which means it is not a food that will spike your blood sugar and make you hungry soon after consuming it.

However this is theory. In practice, because everyone is different you will have to eat the food yourself to find out whether it is filling or not for you.

Quinoa’s micronutrients

Another question worth answering when discussing whether a certain food is good or bad in terms of being “fattening”, is what vitamins and minerals does it include, and whether they have a positive or a negative effect on weight loss.

Although quinoa doesn’t have any micro elements that were shown to directly positively influence fat burn, it has a lot of other micro elements that are known to have a generally good effect on the body. For example, phosphorus (necessary for bone health), zinc (a very important part of hormone production), and many types of different antioxidants that have various positive effects on the human body.


Unfortunately, it is hard to give a “one size fits all” conclusion for everyone because every body is different and has different preferences. Generally speaking quinoa is not fattening, however because it is a relatively calorie dense food you should be careful about how much of it you consume because it is easy to overeat.

If you want to check out other articles about whether a food is good for weight loss, check out my latest article on whether watermelon is good for weight loss!

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