Tag Archives: Wheat

Crataegus columbiana

Botanical Name : Crataegus columbiana
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Crataegus
Series: Diltatae
Kingdom:Plaantae
Order: Rosales

Common Name : Columbian Hawthorn

Habitat: Crataegus columbiana is native to Western N. AmericaBritish Columbia to California, east to Idaho and Oregon. It grows in meadows and near streams in California.

Description:
Crataegus columbiana is a deciduous Tree growing to 5 m (16ft 5in).It is not frost tender. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Midges.Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and can grow in heavy clay soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very alkaline soils.

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It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist or wet soil and can tolerate drought. The plant can tolerates strong winds but not maritime exposure. It can tolerate atmospheric pollution.

Cultivation:
A very easily grown plant, it prefers a well-drained moisture retentive loamy soil but is not at all fussy. Once established, it succeeds in excessively moist soils and also tolerates drought. It grows well on a chalk soil and also in heavy clay soils. A position in full sun is best when plants are being grown for their fruit, they also succeed in semi-shade though fruit yields and quality will be lower in such a position. Most members of this genus succeed in exposed positions, they also tolerate atmospheric pollution. Hybridizes freely with other members of this genus. Seedling trees take from 5 – 8 years before they start bearing fruit, though grafted trees will often flower heavily in their third year. The flowers have a foetid smell somewhat like decaying fish. This attracts midges which are the main means of fertilization. When freshly open, the flowers have more pleasant scent with balsamic undertones. Seedlings should not be left in a seedbed for more than 2 years without being transplanted. This species is closely related to C. douglasii.

Propagation:
Seed – this is best sown as soon as it is ripe in the autumn in a cold frame, some of the seed will germinate in the spring, though most will probably take another year. Stored seed can be very slow and erratic to germinate, it should be warm stratified for 3 months at 15°c and then cold stratified for another 3 months at 4°c. It may still take another 18 months to germinate. Scarifying the seed before stratifying it might reduce this time. Fermenting the seed for a few days in its own pulp may also speed up the germination process. Another possibility is to harvest the seed ‘green’ (as soon as the embryo has fully developed but before the seedcoat hardens) and sow it immediately in a cold frame. If timed well, it can germinate in the spring. If you are only growing small quantities of plants, it is best to pot up the seedlings as soon as they are large enough to handle and grow them on in individual pots for their first year, planting them out in late spring into nursery beds or their final positions. When growing larger quantities, it might be best to sow them directly outdoors in a seedbed, but with protection from mice and other seed-eating creatures. Grow them on in the seedbed until large enough to plant out, but undercut the roots if they are to be left undisturbed for more than two years.

Edible Uses:
Fruit – raw or cooked. A very pleasant flavour, it is slightly mealy but juicy and can be eaten in quantity as a dessert fruit. It is also used in making pies, preserves etc and can be dried for later use. The fruit is up to 11mm in diameter and is borne in small clusters. There are up to five fairly large seeds in the centre of the fruit, these often stick together and so the effect is of eating a cherry-like fruit with a single seed.
Medicinal Uses:
Cardiotonic; Hypotensive.

Although no specific mention has been seen for this species, the fruits and flowers of many hawthorns are well-known in herbal folk medicine as a heart tonic and modern research has borne out this use. The fruits and flowers have a hypotensive effect as well as acting as a direct and mild heart tonic. They are especially indicated in the treatment of weak heart combined with high blood pressure. Prolonged use is necessary for it to be efficacious. It is normally used either as a tea or a tincture.

Other Uses :
Honey Plants; Birds & Wildlife; Bonsai-Suitable; Western Native; Deer Resistant; Small Flowering Tree; Wind-Breaks; Street Tree. Wood – heavy, hard, tough, close-grained. Useful for making tool handles, mallets and other small items.
Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.
Resources:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crataegus_columbiana
https://www.forestfarm.com/product.php?id=1447
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Crataegus+columbiana

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Melampyrum pratense

Botanical Name : Melampyrum pratense
Family: Orobanchaceae
Genus: Melampyrum
Species: M. pratense
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Lamiales

Synonyms: Horse Floure. Triticum vaccinium.

Common Name :Cow-Wheat or common cow-wheat

Local Names:
dansk: Almindelig Kohvede · Deutsch: Wiesen-Wachtelweizen · eesti: Palu-härghein · suomi: Kangasmaitikka · français: Mélampyre des prés · hornjoserbsce: L?sny sparik · lietuvi?: Pievinis k?polis · Nederlands: Hengel · norsk bokmål: Stormarimjelle · polski: Pszeniec zwyczajny · sámegiella: Gieddesáhpal · svenska: Ängskovall ·

The name of Cow-wheat is said to be derived from an extraordinary notion prevalent in some country districts among the peasantry of the Middle Ages, that the small seeds were capable of being converted into wheat, a supposition probably originating in the sudden appearance of the plants among corn, on land that had been recently cleared of wood.

Another reason for the meaning of Melampyrum is given in Lindley’s Treasury of Botany, i.e. it refers to an ancient belief that the seeds, when mixed with grains of wheat and ground into flour tended to make the bread black.

The seeds, which bear some little resemblance to wheat, are generally eaten by swine, though they will not touch the herb. Cows and sheep are extremely fond of the plant, and Dr. Prior explains the name of the plant on the score that though its seed resembles wheat, it is only fit for cows. In old Herbals, we find it named ‘Horse Floure’ and also Triticum vaccinium. The generic name is derived from the Greek melas (black) and pyros (wheat), because the seeds made bread black when mixed with them.

Habitat :Melampyrum pratense is found throughout the UK and Ireland. It is also found throughout many countries in northern and central Europe including Slovenia.I grow in Woods, moorlands, pastureland and meados

Description:
Melampyrum pratense is an annual, with slender, branched stems, about a foot high, bearing stalkless, narrow, tapering, smooth leaves in distant pairs, each pair at right angles to those that are next to it, and long-tubed, pale yellow flowers which are placed in the axils of the upper leaves in pairs, all turning one way.Height c 20-50 cm.  Flower c 12-18 mm long. The corolla is four times as long as the calyx, and the lower lip longer than the upper standing sharply out instead of hanging downwards as in most labiate flowers. The colour is somewhat between the delicate pale yellow of the primrose and the rich bright yellow of the buttercup. The plant is in flower from June to September.
Click to see the pictures
Medicinal Uses:
M. pratense herb has been used in the traditional Austrian medicine internally as tea or externally as pillow filling for treatment of rheumatism and blood vessels calcification.

Other Uses:   Cow-wheat is said to afford fodder for cattle, though not cultivated in this country for that purpose. Linnaeus states that when cows are fed in fields where the Meadow Cow-wheat is abundant, the butter yielded by their milk is peculiarly rich and of a brilliant yellow colour, but in England the plant grows more frequently in the undergrowth of woods and thickets than in meadows, abounding in nearly all copses and woods throughout Great Britain.
The seed of the plant has an elaiosome, which is attractive to wood ants (Formica spp.). The ants disperse the seeds of the plant when they take them back to their nests to feed their young. The plant is an Ancient Woodland indicator, as the ants rarely carry the seeds more than a few yards, seldom crossing a field to go to a new woodland.

M. pratense is a food plant of the caterpillars of the Heath Fritillary (Melitaea athalia), a butterfly.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Melampyrum_pratense
http://www.first-nature.com/flowers/melampyrum_pratense.php
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Melampyrum_pratense
http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/c/cowwh113.html

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Lolium temulentum

Botanical Name: Lolium temulentum
Family: Poaceae
Genus: Lolium
Species: L. temulentum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Poales

Synonyms:
XWALK: Lolium temulentum var. leptochaeton
ICPN: Lolium temulentum ssp. temulentum

Common Names:Darnel or Cockle

Habitat:It has a global distribution.

Description:
Lolium temulentum, a monocot, is an annual herb. The plant stem can grow up to 1 meter tall,

Spikes many-flowered, distichous, sessile, contrary to the rachis. Flowers beardless at the base. Glumes 2, nearly equal, herbaceous, lanceolate, channelled, awnless; the lower or inner ones very often deficient in the lateral spikelets. Paleae 2, herbaceous; the lower concave, awnless, or awned below the point; the upper bicarinate. Stamens 3. Ovary smooth; styles 2, very short, inserted below the point; stigmas feathery, with long, simple, finely-toothed, transparent hairs; scales 2, fleshy, smooth, acute, entire or two-lobed. Caryopsis smooth, adhering to the upper paleae (Kunth).

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Darnel usually grows in the same production zones as wheat and is considered a weed. The similarity between these two plants is so extensive that in some regions cockle is referred to as false wheat. It bears a close resemblance to wheat until the ear appears. The ears on the real wheat are so heavy that it makes the entire plant droop downward, but L. temulentum, whose ears are light, stands up straight. The wheat will also appear brown when ripe, whereas the darnel is black. When the Lolium matures, the spikelets turn edge ways to the rachis where the wheat spikelets remain as they grew previously.

The darnel can be infected by an endophytic fungus of the genus Neotyphodium, and the endophyte-produced, insecticidal loline alkaloids were first isolated from this plant. It parasitizes wheat fields. The French word for darnel is “ivraie” (from Latin ebriacus, ‘intoxicated’), which expresses that weed’s characteristic of making one feel poisoned with drunkenness, and can cause death. This characteristic is also alluded to in the scientific name (Latin temulentus = drunk).

Chemical Characteristics:
According to Ruspini , the presence of grains of Lolium temulentum in wheat-flour may be detected by digesting the suspected farina in rectified spirit. If the Lolium be present, the spirit immediately acquires a characteristic green tint, which gradually deepens; and the taste of the tincture is astringent, and so disagreeable that it may even excite vomiting. By evaporation it yields a green resin. But I have not succeeded in obtaining these results. By digesting bruised and coarsely powdered grains of Lolium temulentum in rectified spirit, the liquid had acquired in forty eight hours a pale yellow colour and scarcely any flavour, and yielded, by spontaneous evaporation, a minute portion of yellowish residue with a saline taste.

Medicinal Uses:
This grass was used medicinally by the ancient Greeks and Romans, though it is somewhat remarkable that it is mentioned neither by Hippocrates nor Celsus.

Darnel has been recently employed in headache, in rheumatic meningitis, and in sciatica. Fantoni used it with success in the case of a widow who, at the climacteric period, was affected with giddiness, headache, and epistaxis, which had resisted various other remedies. In a case of violent rheumatic meningitis, very great benefit was obtained by its use.

Occasionally used in folk medicine to treat headache, rheumatism, and sciatica.  It is occasionally used externally in cases of skin eruption and tumorous growth.  It is sometimes used by doctors to treat dizziness, insomnia, blood congestion, and stomach problems. It may also be used for skin problems like herpes, scurf, and sores.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_DE.htm
http://www.henriettesherbal.com/eclectic/pereira/lolium.html
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=LOTE2&photoID=lote2_001_avd.tif
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lolium_temulentum

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Calliopsis

Botanical Name :Coreopsis tinctoria
Family: Asteraceae
Genus: Coreopsis
Species: C. tinctoria
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asterales

Common Name :Calliopsis ,:Plains coreopsis, golden tickseed

Habitat :Calliopsis is common to much of the United States, especially the Great Plains and southern states .

Description:
Calliopsis is an annual forb. The small, slender seeds germinate in fall (overwintering as a low rosette) or early spring. Growing quickly, plants attain heights of 12 to 40 inches (30–100 cm). Leaves are pinnately-divided, glabrous and tending to thin at the top of the plant where numerous 1- to 1.5-inch (2.5-to 4-cm) flowers sit atop slender stems. Flowers are brilliant yellow with maroon or brown centers of various sizes. Flowering typically occurs in mid-summer.

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Cultivation:
Plains coreopsis grows well in many types of soil, but seems to prefer sandy or well-drained soils. Although somewhat drought-tolerant, naturally growing plants are usually found in areas with regular rainfall. It is often grows in disturbed areas such as roadsides or cultivated fields. Preferring full sun, it will also grow in partial shade.

Because of its easy growing habits and bright, showy flowers such as Roulettte (tiger stripes of gold on a deep mahogany ground), Plains coreopsis is increasingly used for landscape beautification and in flower gardens.

Medicinal Uses:
Native Americans chewed the leaves for toothache, and applied a poultice of them to skin sores and bruises.  The powdered root in warm water was used as a wash for sore eyes.  A tea made of the root was used for stomachache, diarrhea, and fever. This plant is an effective astringent and hemostatic, with its effects lasting the length of the intestinal tract and therefore of use in dysentery and general intestinal inflammations.  It may be used as a systemic hemostatic; when drunk after a sprain or major bruise or hematoma will help stabilize the injury and facilitate quicker healing.  The tea will also lessen menstrual flow.  A few leaves in a little water or a weak tea is a soothing eyewash.

Other Uses:This plant is used mainly for landscape beautification.  It has potential for use in cultivated, garden situations, in naturalized prairie or meadow plantings, and along roadsides.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Sources:
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_C.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plains_coreopsis
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=COTI3&photoID=coti3_004_ahp.tif

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Quinoa

Botanical Name : Chenopodium quinoa
Family: Amaranthaceae
Subfamily: Chenopodioideae
Genus: Chenopodium
Species: C. quinoa
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Caryophyllales
Common Spanish Name :Quinua, from Quechua kinwa

Habitat :The original habitat is obscure, the plant probably arose through cultivation.

Quinoa originated in the Andean region of South America, where it has been an important food for 6,000 years. Its name is the Spanish spelling of the Quechua name. Quinoa is generally undemanding and altitude-hardy, so it can be easily cultivated in the Andes up to about 4,000 meters. Even so, it grows best in well-drained soils and requires a relatively long growing season. In eastern North America, it is susceptible to a leaf miner that may reduce crop success; this leaf miner also affects the common weed and close relative Chenopodium album, but C. album is much more resistant.

Similar Chenopodium species, such as pitseed goosefoot (Chenopodium berlandieri) and fat hen (Chenopodium album), were grown and domesticated in North America as part of the Eastern Agricultural Complex before maize agriculture became popular. Fat hen, which has a widespread distribution in the Northern Hemisphere, produces edible seeds and greens much like quinoa, but in lower quantities.

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ANNUAL growing to 1.5 m (5ft) by 0.3 m (1ft in).
It is not frost tender. It is in flower from Jul to August, and the seeds ripen from Aug to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Wind, self.The plant is self-fertile.

The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil.The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. and can grow in very alkaline and saline soils.
It cannot grow in the shade.It requires moist soil and can tolerate drought.The plant can tolerates strong winds but not maritime exposure.

Quinoa is a species of goosefoot (Chenopodium), is a grain-like crop grown primarily for its edible seeds. It is a pseudocereal rather than a true cereal, or grain, as it is not a member of the grass family. As a chenopod, quinoa is closely related to species such as beets, spinach, and tumbleweeds. Its leaves are also eaten as a leaf vegetable, much like amaranth, but the commercial availability of quinoa greens is currently limited.

Chenopodium quinoa (and a related species from Mexico, Chenopodium nuttalliae) is most familiar as a fully domesticated plant, but it was believed to have been domesticated in the Andes from wild populations of Chenopodium quinoa. There are non-cultivated quinoa plants (Chenopodium quinoa var. melanospermum) which grow in the same area where it is cultivated; those are probably related to quinoa’s wild predecessors, but could instead be descendants of cultivated plants.

History & Culture:
The Incas, who held the crop to be sacred, referred to quinoa as chisaya mama or mother of all grains, and it was the Inca emperor who would traditionally sow the first seeds of the season using ‘golden implements’. During the European conquest of South America quinoa was scorned by the Spanish colonists as food for Indians, and even actively suppressed, due to its status within indigenous non-Christian ceremonies. In fact, the conquistadors forbade quinoa cultivation for a time and the Incas were forced to grow corn instead.

Cultivation:
An easily grown plant, it requires a rich moist well-drained soil and a warm position if it is to do really well, but it also succeeds in less than optimum conditions.   Tolerates a pH range from 6 to 8.5 and moderate soil salinity. Plants are quite wind resistant. Plants are drought tolerant once they are established. Plants tolerate light frosts at any stage in their development except when flowering. Quinoa (pronounced keen-wa) is commonly cultivated as a grain crop in Chile and Peru. This plant is receiving considerable attention world-wide as a trouble-free easily grown seed crop for warm temperate and tropical zones. It has the potential to outcrop cereals on light land in Britain. There are a great many named varieties. The plant is day-length sensitive and many varieties fail to flower properly away from equatorial regions, however those varieties coming from the south of its range in Chile are more likely to do well in Britain. Different cultivars take from 90 – 220 days from seed sowing to harvest. Yields as high as 5 tonnes per hectare have been recorded in the Andes, which compares favourably with wheat in that area[196]. Young plants look remarkably like the common garden weed fat hen (Chenopodium album). Be careful not to weed the seedlings out in error. The seed is not attacked by birds because it has a coating of bitter tasting saponins. These saponins are very easily removed by soaking the seed overnight and then thoroughly rinsing it until there is no sign of any soapiness in the water. The seed itself is very easy to harvest by hand on a small scale and is usually ripe in August. Cut down the plants when the first ripe seeds are falling easily from the flower head, lay out the stems on a sheet in a warm dry position for a few days and then simply beat the stems against a wall or some other surface, the seed will fall out easily if it is fully ripe and then merely requires winnowing to get rid of the chaff.

Propagation :
Seed – sow April in situ. The seed can either be sown broadcast or in rows about 25cm apart, thinning the plants to about every 10cm. Germination is rapid, even in fairly dry conditions. Be careful not to weed out the seedlings because they look very similar to some common garden weeds[

Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves;  Seed.

Seed – cooked. A pleasant mild flavour, the seed can absorb the flavour of other foods that are cooked with it and so it can be used in a wide variety of ways. It should be thoroughly soaked and rinsed to remove a coating of saponins on the seed surface. The seed can be used in all the ways that rice is used, as a savoury or sweet dish. It can also be ground into a powder and used as a porridge. The seed can also be sprouted and used in salads though many people find the sprouted seed unpleasant. The seed contains a very high quality protein that is rich in the amino acids lysine, methionine and cystine, it has the same biological value as milk. The seed contains about 38% carbohydrate, 19% protein, 5% fat, 5% sugar. Leaves – raw or cooked. The young leaves are cooked like spinach. It is best not to eat large quantities of the raw leaves, see the notes above on toxicity.

Nutritional Value :
Quinoa was of great nutritional importance in pre-Columbian Andean civilizations, being secondary only to the potato, and was followed in importance by maize. In contemporary times, this crop has become highly appreciated for its nutritional value, as its protein content is very high (12%–18%). Unlike wheat or rice (which are low in lysine), and like oats, quinoa contains a balanced set of essential amino acids for humans, making it an unusually complete protein source among plant foods. It is a good source of dietary fiber and phosphorus and is high in magnesium and iron. Quinoa is gluten-free and considered easy to digest. Because of all these characteristics, quinoa is being considered a possible crop in NASA’s Controlled Ecological Life Support System for long-duration manned spaceflights

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The Health Benefits of Quinoa

Chenopodium quinoa as World’s most Healthy Food :

Preparation:
Quinoa has a light, fluffy texture when cooked, and its mild, slightly nutty flavor makes it an alternative to white rice or couscous.

The first step in preparing quinoa is to remove the saponins, a process that requires soaking the grain in water for a few hours, then changing the water and resoaking, or rinsing it in ample running water either in a fine strainer or in cheesecloth. Removal of the saponin helps with digestion; the soapy nature of the compound makes it act as a laxative. Most boxed quinoa has been pre-rinsed for convenience.

A common cooking method is to treat quinoa much like rice, bringing two cups of water to a boil with one cup of grain, covering at a low simmer and cooking for 14–18 minutes or until the germ separates from the seed. The cooked germ looks like a tiny curl and should have a slight bite to it (like al dente pasta). As an alternative, one can use a rice cooker to prepare quinoa, treating it just like white rice (for both cooking cycle and water amounts).

Vegetables and seasonings can also be added to make a wide range of dishes. Chicken or vegetable stock can be substituted for water during cooking, adding flavor. It is also suited to vegetable pilafs, complementing bitter greens like kale.

Quinoa can serve as a high-protein breakfast food mixed with honey, almonds, or berries; it is also sold as a dry product, much like corn flakes. Quinoa flour can be used in wheat-based and gluten-free baking.

Quinoa may be germinated in its raw form to boost its nutritional value. Germination activates its natural enzymes and multiplies its vitamin content.[6] In fact, quinoa has a notably short germination period: Only 2–4 hours resting in a glass of clean water is enough to make it sprout and release gases, as opposed to, e.g., 12 hours overnight with wheat.[citation needed] This process, besides its nutritional enhancements, softens the grains, making them suitable to be added to salads and other cold foods


Name of crops:

This crop is known as quinoa in English and, according to Merriam-Webster, the primary pronunciation is with two syllables with the accent on the first (English pronunciation:KEEN-wah). It may also be pronounced with three syllables, with the stress on either the first syllable  or on the second . In Spanish, the spelling and pronunciation vary by region. The accent may be on the first syllable, in which case it is usually spelled quinua [kinwa], with quínoa [kinoa] being a variant; or on the second syllable: [ki?noa]), in which case it is spelled quinoa. The name derives from the Quechua kinwa, pronounced in the standard dialect [kinwa]. There are multiple other native names in South America:
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Quechua: ayara, kiuna, kuchikinwa, achita, kinua, kinoa, chisaya mama
Aymara: supha, jopa, jupha, juira, ära, qallapi, vocali
Chibchan: Suba, pasca
Mapudungun: dawe, sawe


Other Uses

Dye;  Repellent;  Soap.

Gold/green dyes can be obtained from the whole plant. Saponins on the seed can be used as a bird and insect deterrent by spraying them on growing plants. The saponins are obtained by saving the soak-water used when preparing the seed for eating. The spray remains effective for a few weeks or until washed off by rain.

Known Hazards :  The leaves and seeds of all members of this genus are more or less edible. However, many of the species in this genus contain saponins, though usually in quantities too small to do any harm. Although toxic, saponins are poorly absorbed by the body and most pass straight through without any problem. They are also broken down to a large extent in the cooking process. Saponins are found in many foods, such as some beans. Saponins are much more toxic to some creatures, such as fish, and hunting tribes have traditionally put large quantities of them in streams, lakes etc in order to stupefy or kill the fish[K]. The plants also contain some oxalic acid, which in large quantities can lock up some of the nutrients in the food. However, even considering this, they are very nutritious vegetables in reasonable quantities. Cooking the plants will reduce their content of oxalic acid. People with a tendency to rheumatism, arthritis, gout, kidney stones or hyperacidity should take especial caution if including this plant in their diet since it can aggravate their condition.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://www.hub-uk.com/interesting/quinoa.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quinoa
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Chenopodium%20quinoa

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