Diet and NutritionFitness

Different Types of Millets with Their Nutrition and Benefits

Are you looking for a healthy meal? Your search ends here. Millets can be the best meal. Millets are of different types and known best as nutritious grains with many benefits. 

These grains are the source of energy, fatty acid, protein, minerals, vitamins, dietary fibers, and polyphenols. In fact, millets have a high amount of fibers and minerals as compared to rice and wheat. 

types of millets
Millets types and benefits

The production of millets doesn’t require a favorable condition. They can be cultivated in drought conditions and don’t need any pesticides for growth. 

Total millet and sorghum production is 4.7% of the whole grain production of the world.  

In this article, we will focus on the variety types of millets and their benefits. We will also explain the most basic and easy method to consume millet as your meal.

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Nutritional value:

The nutritional content of 100g of millets is given below:

NutrientsQuantity
Energy378 kcal
Moisture8.7g
Carbohydrates72.8g
Protein11g
Fat4.3g
Dietary fiber8.5g
Vitamins
Vitamin B20.29 mg
Vitamin B34.72 mg
Vitamin B50.85 mg
Vitamin B60.38 mg
Vitamin B985 microgram
Vitamin C1.6 mg
Vitamin K0.9 microgram
Minerals
Calcium8 mg
Iron3 mg
Magnesium114 mg
Phosphorous285 mg
Potassium195 mg
Sodium5 mg
Zinc1.7 mg
Manganese1.6 mg

Types of millets:

Various types of millets are cultivated. Those are sorghum, finger millets, pearl millets, Kodo millet, proso millet, foxtail millet, and little millet.

Sorghum:

It is commonly called jowar. Sorghum is the earliest cereal grain. It is entirely gluten-free, so that it can be used as an alternative for wheat by gluten sensitive persons.

It contains a high percentage of calcium and also has some amount of iron, proteins, and fiber. Sorghum contains policosanols and thus results in a lower cholesterol level

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The percentage of protein, fiber, minerals in sorghum is 11g, 6.7g, and 2.7g, respectively. (1)

Finger millet:

Finger millet is the most nutritious cereal. It is a good source of calcium and iron. Due to the presence of calcium, finger millet is helpful in bone strength and beneficial for elders and pregnant women. A high percentage of iron in finger millet is useful for anemia and increases hemoglobin. The high fiber content in finger millet helps to cure constipation. It contains a high nutritious value, thus fights against malnutrition. (1)

Per 100g of finger millets (2)

Energy: 328kcal

Carbohydrates: 72g

Protein: 7.3g

Fats: 1.3g

Fibers: 3.6g

Minerals: 2.7g

Pearl millet:

Pearl millet is the most widely grown millet in the world. More than 15,000 pearl millet lines have been collected in the world germplasm collection located in India.

Pearl millet has a high amount of magnesium, which reduces the possibilities of respiratory diseases like asthma and prevents migration. Fibers of pearl reduce excessive bile secretion and prevent gallstones. (1)

100g of pearl millet contains: (2)

Energy: 361kcal

Carbohydrates: 11.6g

Protein: 67.5g

Fats: 5.0g

Fibers: 1.2g

Minerals: 2.3g

Kodo millet:

These millets are traditional foods that help in weight loss. Kodo millets bear a resemblance to rice. These are rich in phytochemicals and antioxidants. Kodo millets are very helpful for women for their regular menstrual cycle. (1)

100g of Kodo millets contain: (2)

Energy: 309kcal

Carbohydrates: 65.9g

Proteins: 8.3g

Fats: 1.4g

Fibers: 9.0g

Minerals: 2.6g

Proso millet:

Proso millets are used as a curative food after childbirth or illness. These grains are a significant source of vitamin B3 and proteins.

Due to the presence of vitamin B3 proso millets can prevent pellagra conditions, which is a skin disease. 100g of proso millets contain approximately 12.5g of proteins, 2.2g of fibers, and 1.9g of minerals. (1)

Types of millets quotes

Foxtail millets:

Foxtail millets help with the consistent arrival of glucose without influencing the metabolism of the body.

These millets are also called healthy heart foods, as these are a good source of magnesium. Do you want to know its primary benefits? Well, these grains are beneficial for diabetic patients. (1)

100g of foxtail millet contains: (2)

Energy: 331

Carbohydrates: 60.9

Protein: 12.3

Fats: 4.3

Fiber: 8.0

Minerals: 3.3

Little millet:

Don’t get confused with the name. Do you think ‘little’ indicates their small size? No, it has standard size as other millets.

Do not keep any misconceptions like they may have fewer nutrients. They are rich in many minerals and vitamins, especially vitamin B. It also provides essential fats and high amounts of fiber. (1) 100g of little millet contains: (2)

Energy: 341kcal

Carbohydrates: 75.7g

Protein: 8.7g

Fats: 5.3g

Fiber: 8.6g

Minerals: 1.5g

Health benefits of different types of millets:

  • Millets are healthy for the heart, as these are the source of magnesium. Magnesium helps in lowering blood pressure and reduces the risk of a heart attack. Vitamin B3, which is present in millets, lowers cholesterol, which is also beneficial for the heart. (2)
  • Millets repair body tissue by providing phosphorus to the body. Phosphorus is a significant component of the cell membrane and nervous system structures and ATP. ATP is the energy source of our body. (2)
  • Millets are also helpful in diabetes. Magnesium-rich millets prevent type II diabetes. Magnesium increases the efficiency of insulin and helps in the secretion of many carbohydrate digestive enzymes. (1)
  • The insoluble fibers present in millets prevent the formation of gallstones. (1)
  • Millets are rich in fibers, and these fibers give protection against breast cancer. (2)
  • Millets prevent coeliac disease as these are gluten-free, whereas wheat, barley, etc. contain gluten. Coeliac disease is an immune response that takes place against the protein gluten.
  • The high dietary fiber content of millets improves our peristaltic movement and digestive and absorption. Thus millets prevent obesity. (1)
  • Millets are rich in antioxidants. Antioxidants repair our cells fast and prevent acne. (1)
Benefits of Eating Millets
Benefits of Eating Millets

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How can we cook millets?

Millets can be cooked by several methods. But we will guide you on the most basic and most comfortable way to cook millet.

  • One cup of raw millet is used to prepare 3 cups of cooked millet.
  • The first step is to roast millet grains until they turn golden brown, and then 2 cups of water can be added along with vegetables and salt.
  • Boil it until all the water gets absorbed, and your meal is ready.

Conclusion:

No doubt, millets have more benefits as compared to other cereals, but one should not completely replace all the grains in his diet with millet.

Before taking this step, you should consult the physician. Usually, people of Africa and India use millets to prepare many dishes.

It can be eaten as breakfast or lunch, or dinner. India is the largest producer of millets in the world (1).

So millets should be considered as a significant food like other cereals as these are better than those.

References:
1. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-662-09544-7_6
2. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Millet
3. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0733521006000828
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