2023 is International Millet Year and there has been a sudden storm in its increase of awareness. Although it is an ancient grain of India, it lost its value during the green revolution due to this, millet slowly left our diets as refined wheat and rice took over. Now, millets have yet again come into the spotlight due to its nutritional benefits and sustainable features. This means, it is not only good for humans but also very good for the planet- owing to its robust texture, ability to survive drought and ability to grow without fertilisers. This makes millets the solution to India’s food security and nutritional needs. So, when the question arises, how can you add millets to your daily diet, what are the best ways to eat millets & which millets to eat during summer- the answer is easy.
- Ragi - Ragi is high in iron, which our bodies need to make haemoglobin in red blood cells. It's loaded with calcium and potassium. Because of its high fibre content, ragi takes a long time to digest in the stomach, making you feel fuller for longer. It's also high in calcium and Vitamin D, making it a bone-building superfood. The fact that ragi is simple to prepare and can be used in a variety of cuisines comes as no surprise. Maybe a Dessert Mix with Ragi would be a good starting point!
- Jowar - Jowar is a grain that is high in potassium which means it helps repair cells, manages cholesterol and helps manage blood pressure. There are several ways to incorporate Jowar in your diet with Jowar Ladoos, Jowar Flakes and Jowar Upma. An interesting introduction would also be with Cereal Cakes made with Jowar and sweetened with Jowar Plant juice
- Bajra - Bajra is a millet cultivated in Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Gujarat and Haryana. It is also known as a staple dish mostly eaten as a roti. It is rich in iron, protein and phosphates. A Bajra Lassi would definitely be a power-cool drink for the summer! For a fuller meal, Bajra Flakes with Honey would be a great start. It is easy to consume, not quite far from the usual flakes- just healthier
- Kodo - Kodo millet is known to be high in antioxidants and dietary fibre. It is good for postmenopausal women and also tends to have lower calories. If you wish to have a sneaky meal on your cheat days. Make a nice hamburger with Kodo millet. It will also keep you full for longer and reduce over-eating thus making for a great meal on your diet chart
- Amaranth - This is a great source of protein and dietary fibre that helps fight greying of hair and hair loss. A fun and personalised way to consume this millet is by making your own bowl of muesli which includes Amaranta in a flake texture. You can personalise your toppings, sweeteners etc. to make your very own bowl of millet rich breakfast
Adding these millets to your diet can improve your immune system by giving it all the nutritional needs it desires. It's best to start slow, understand how your body reacts to certain millets and if you have underlying health conditions, please consult your doctor before consuming them.