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Contrary to the way its name sounds, buckwheat is not part of the wheat family which is good new for the people with a wheat or gluten allergy. It is not even a cereal grain. Rather buckwheat is the seed of a fruit! Despite this fact, it is usually classified as a grain because most people use it as such.

The buckwheat seed is found inside a very hard shell which must be removed before the seed can be used. When the buckwheat seed is roasted it is then called "kasha."
Buckwheat can be used as a rice alternative and/or as flour when it is ground.

So to recap... what is buckwheat? If you answered a seed, you are correct!

Aside from being delicious in pancakes or other dishes, does buckwheat have any health benefits?

The answer to this question is a resounding yes. I don't intend to go into details about all those health benefits for it is beyond the scope of this article. However, allow me to name a few:

  • Lowers the risk of high cholesterol and high blood pressure
  • Lowers the risk of diabetes and affords better blood sugar control
  • Helps prevent gallstones
  • Give you better nutrition than fruits and vegetables
  • Protects against heart disease and heart failure
  • Gives post-menopausal women significant cardiovascular benefits
  • Protects against breast cancer (thanks to its high fiber content)
  • Protects against childhood asthma
  • Etc

So now the answer to "what is buckwheat" should be: a delicious seed than is good for you in many many ways. Don't you think?

If you are interested in making some buckwheat pancakes, here is an easy recipe for a homemade mix!

Florence is an amateur cook and a stay-at-home-mom. Aside from cooking she enjoys, reading, learning, coaching, walking and many more activities. Florence is the owner of where she shares her recipes and always welcomes yours.

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