Healthy Eating Advisor
Ask Felicity

21 July 2015

An Introduction to Buckwheat

Belonging to the Polygonaceae family, buckwheat grows 75-125 cm high, and has a short growing period of up to 12 weeks. It adapts well to its environment, making it possible to grow in areas, such as Tibetan plateaus, where wheat, for example, cannot survive.  Buckwheat flowers are usually white in colour, though they can also be yellow or pink.

As buckwheat is gluten free it is often used as a substitute for wheat, oats, barley or rye. However, it should also be considered by those not on a gluten free diet, as it is not only very tasty but has many health benefits too.

Buckwheat flour, also gluten-free, is the ground up seeds of the buckwheat plant. It is an effective substitute for standard wheat flour, often being used in baking.

Nutritional information

As buckwheat and buckwheat flour are considered to be gluten-free, these products are seen as suitable for a coeliac diet. A good source of dietary fibre, buckwheat is a source of nearly all of the amino acids. It is also a good source of manganese and magnesium, and is very low in cholesterol and sodium.

100g serving includes:
343kcal, 13.2g protein, 3.4g fat, 71.5g carbohydrate, 10g fibre

Health benefits

High in fibre, buckwheat cleanses the intestines, helping to regulate bowel movements. A diet high in fibre has also been seen to be linked with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease. This is complemented by the high levels of lignans in buckwheat. Lignan is a phytonutrient which is thought to have links with promoting good heart health. Additionally, buckwheat is a good source of magnesium, which relaxes the blood vessels, improving blood flow, and promoting a healthy blood pressure level.

Studies between blood sugar level and buckwheat highlight further potential benefits of this crop. Consumption of buckwheat was seen to lower glucose levels in the blood, suggesting that it may reduce risk of diabetes. Additionally, consumption of buckwheat helps you to feel fuller for longer, reducing snacking and cravings for sugary foods. This can therefore be beneficial in aiding weight loss.

Buckwheat is rich in manganese, a trace mineral which is important for bone health. Manganese should be gleaned from the diet, and buckwheat is a great source of this. Regular consumption of buckwheat can help with strengthening connective tissue, absorbing calcium and reducing risk of developing osteoporosis. 

Buckwheat recipes

Buckwheat & Parsley Yoghurt Burgers
Buckwheat & Banana Pancakes
Gluten-free buckwheat and mushroom risotto

Conquer that Quinoa!

So you've bought yourself a bag of quinoa but now you don't know what to do with it! Don't worry, we're here to help.

How to cook quinoa

Cinnamon Sugar Chickpea Cookies

These cookies might sound a bit strange but they're sweet and chewy making them the perfect partner for a cuppa!

Get the recipe

Video: Fermented Tomato Ketchup

Ready to try something new? Watch Emma's recipe video for a delicious Fermented Tomato Ketchup!

Get the recipe

Kick it up a notch!

Our Herbamare combines herbs and vegetables with a little sea salt to create a delicious, healthy seasoning for any dish!

Find out more

Healthy & nutritious dinner ideas

Get new recipes in your inbox every week. Sign up now

Red, itchy eyes caused by hayfever? Try NEW Pollinosan Hayfever Eye drops

     Receive healthy recipes from A.Vogel      every month.


Receive healthy recipes from A.Vogel every month

Sign up now