Why Millets are Best Cereal for Breakfast
Millets are cereal crops and small seed grasses. They have been grown for centuries in Africa, Egypt and other parts of Europe. It is an excellent crop which can easily grow in cold and arid regions in a time span of fewer than 70 days.
Millet is considered as one of the world’s healthiest foods. It is fully packed with nutrients and vitamins. Every 100 grams of millets are composed of 14.00 mg calcium, 0.535 mg copper, 3.94 mg iron, 119.0 mg magnesium, 1.002 mg manganese, 32.7 mcg selenium, and 224.00 mg potassium and 285.00 mg phosphorus per 100-grams. It also contains many vitamins such as niacin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid, folate, folic acid, vitamin B6, vitamin C, vitamin E, and vitamin K. These nutritional qualities make it one of the best alternatives to rice and wheat.
Types of millets & its Benefits
There are different varieties of millets and each one of them offers a bouquet of health benefits. Let us take a look at 8 most amazing millets.
It is commonly known as ‘Jowar’ in India. Traditionally, it was used as a grain to make flatbreads or ‘rotis’. Enriched with iron, protein, and fibre, jowar helps in reducing cholesterol levels as it has a component called policosanols (a part of sorghum wax). It is also good for people who have a wheat intolerance.
Ragi (Finger Millet)
Ragi or Finger millet is considered a healthy substitute for rice and wheat. It is undoubtedly a powerhouse of nutrition and is fully loaded with proteins and amino acids. This gluten-free millet is considered good for growing kids as it helps in brain development.
Bajra (Pearl millet)
Pearl millet commonly known as ‘Bajra’ in India is recognized for its innumerable health benefits. It is fully packed with iron, protein, fibre, and minerals such as calcium and magnesium. Being high in fibre content, it takes an extended time for the grain to maneuver from the abdomen to the intestines. This way, bajra curbs hunger for a protracted span of your time. It contains phytochemicals, that is named phytic acid believed to extend cholesterin metabolism. It conjointly stabilizes the amount of cholesterin within the body. Bajra is made in insoluble fibre that aids digestion. It conjointly reduces the secretion of digestive juice acids and is connected to a down risk of concretion formation.
Foxtail millet (Thinai)
Foxtail millet contains blood sugar balancing carbohydrates and is available in the form of semolina and rice flour. This millet helps in strengthening immunity due to the presence of iron and calcium in it.
Barnyard millet (Kuthiraivali)
This nutrient-dense millet has high fibre content, which helps in losing weight. It also helps in the bone building as it is rich in calcium and phosphorous. Its daily consumption can help in fighting bone diseases.
Proso millet (Pani Varagu)
This millet helps in balancing blood sugar levels. Its low glycaemic index has made it extremely popular among weight conscious individuals. In India, it is commonly used for feeding birds.
Little millet (Samai)
Packed with vitamin B and minerals like iron, calcium, potassium, and zinc, little millets provide essential nutrients, which help in weight loss. Its high fiber content makes it a healthy replacement for rice.
Kodo millet (Varagu)
It is easy to digest and is rich in phytochemicals and antioxidants, all of which help in preventing the occurrence of major lifestyle diseases. Kodo millets are also known to help in weight loss, reduce knee and joint pains, and help regularize menstruation in women. This is attributed to its high mineral content like calcium, magnesium, and iron.
Millet has a unique composition of beneficial nutrients. It also enjoys the advantage of growing in a short period in areas where other grains may fail. These gluten-free millets play a pivotal role in preventing and curing several health issues. In addition to the benefits mentioned above, other health benefits include helping in digestion, preventing asthma, helping getting rid of LDL cholesterol, preventing anaemia, help prevent gallstones, clear toxins from the body, help manage diabetes, prevent cancer, repair body tissues, and provide a gluten-free alternative.