Healthful Mind Body and Soul

Be Whole Body Healthly!

Learn From My Quinoa Mistake

Leave a comment

Happy Monday, I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend.

I was having  a wonderful weekend until I had a serving of quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah). I’m sharing my experience with you because I want everyone to be aware of what can happen.


If you haven’t heard of quinoa, you must be living under a rock somewhere, over the last few years it has become more popular. Quinoa is a complete protein source, high in iron, magnesium and fiber and labeled as one of the healthiest staples to keep in the pantry.

Cooking quinoa is very simple to prepare, just boil similar to preparing rice. But before you pour into pan it has to be rinsed thoroughly, let me repeat, you must rinse your quinoa thoroughly before cooking.


Quinoa has a naturally occurring toxic coating called saponin, it can be easily removed by rinsing, most boxed quinoa has been pre-washed, but I would give it a wash before preparing.

If you do not rinse thoroughly, you will ingest this substance, which is there to protect the plant from insects and fungus, and it could make you very sick, very, very sick.  Unfortunately, I learned this first hand last night, when I forgot to rinse before preparing. About two and a half hours after eating I started to feel sick and soon I was doubled over with pain.  I puzzled as to what could be causing me such pain and discomfort, I started to think about all I had eaten during the day and I thought back to the last time I felt this way, was a few weeks ago after eating a quinoa salad at work, however this time it was ten times the pain and it lasted longer.  Could I be allergic to quinoa, oh no I love quinoa.

Quinoa Salad

I searched the internet and  found that there have been others who have had this same experience as I was having due to not rinsing quinoa thoroughly and properly before preparing.  Another little bit of important information was that if you ingest saponin, the body will start to recognize the quinoa protein as a dangerous toxin, and regardless of rinsing throughly, you will continue to have reactions that can worsen each time and possibly cause death.

I love quinoa, but I am afraid. I think I’ll see my Dr. before trying again, if I ever try it again.

For more information on quinoa allergic reactions click here.

Be Marvelous In Your Monday and check out Katie at Healthy Diva Eats and all the other MIMM.