Nutraceutical value of kiwicha (Amaranthus caudatus L.).
Amaranthus caudatus L. (Amaranthaceae), commonly known as kiwicha, is considered as one of the few multipurpose pseudocereal crops which supply higher nutritional seeds in huge quantities. A. caudatus is rich source of proteins, β-carotene, vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber. Amaranth starch is of promising use by its high solubility and digestibility, compared to wheat, rice, and oat, seeds of amaranths are gluten-free and contain 30% more protein with complete set of amino acid, offering new possibilities for food processing, pharmacology, and cosmetics. In addition to its nutritional value, several studies have highlighted the importance of this A. caudatus as potential sources of biologically active compounds with anti-diabetic, anti-hyperlipidemic, and anti-hypercholesterolemic effects and antioxidant and antimicrobial activities. Therefore, the introduction in the diet of A. caudatus seeds could be associated with health promotion and prevention of diseases.