Hi Shalini, we are starting to hear this concern more often. It is not something we are able to find good scientific publications for. We do know that various communities in different parts of the world, not just India, have lived on millet based diets for not just centuries but millenia. There are atleast 15 to 20 families in our own friend circle, including my own, that have been eating millets regularly for more than 3 years now. In our houses rice doesn’t just mean paddy rice, it could be little millet rice, foxtail millet rice, kodo millet rice, proso millet rice, barnyard millet rice, etc.
As I have been mentioning in other comments, one needs to practice two things when making changes in one’s food – (i) please try anything new in moderation and (ii) observe your body and discuss with your medical advisor/dietician/doctor to understand what is happening.
First the disclaimer: One needs to understand the individual’s constitution and work on their diet seeing how their body responds to changes. So please consult a medical adviser / dietician / doctor regularly to get the most informed answer.
From the way communities have included these grains in their diets and cuisines, we can see that pearl millet (bajra/kambu/sajje/sadda/…) is a food for winters -i.e. it warms up the body. Foxtail millet also warms up the body, many communities eat it with lot of butter milk and in some communities a small quantity of butter milk is added when cooking !
So one thing we can recognize from this is that what we eat it with, and how we cook it, has a lot of bearing on how the body receives it. Hope this helps.
Thanks for useful information about millets. Please inform which is the most useful millet and why. Please give few recipes for each millet for adults. Is it better to take millets in the form of porridge or solid form. Which millets are useful for controlling blood sugar level and cholesterol.
Thank you Vijayendran sir. There is no magic cereal. Each grain offers a bouquet of nutrients. It is for us to choose which ones we eat and which ones we don’t based on our dietary requirements, taste, cost, availability, etc. We advocate for diversification of the cereals one eats rather than seeking a magic bullet.
You will find different millet recipes on this blog and on other websites. Almost all millets help control blood sugar levels and cholestrol. But please note that a millet based diet cannot cure one of these conditions. Please do consult a dietician or your doctor before drastically changing your diet.
We cook millet (pro so or foxtail) along with brown rice and it tastes just as good. With extra fibre and nutrients it improves digestion dramatically and very healthy. My recipe for plain rice substitute is as under
Take half cup of rice preferably brown) add foxtail or proso millet for the other half. Clean and add 1:2.5 x water and cook in rice cooker. Tastes just like rice along with sambar, rasam or you can also cook it as pasta substitute for Italian dishes. My family likes it so am sure you will like it and feel healthy.
Note: millets are not expensive as mentioned in one of the post.for e.g rice I buy (organic brown is Rs 85 and organic millet is 60 for 500 g.
IT is a very useful information on millets but we would like to know the various recipes that can be prepared with each millet.And also which is the best millet of all those mentioned here, with less fat nutrient.
Thank you Vijayendran! There are a few recipes for each of the millets on this blog itself under the Recipes tab. You can also find many more recipes for millet based dishes online. Please search for these using any search engine/website like google, bing, yahoo, duck duck go etc.
The nutrient profile of the different millets do come across as having considerable fat content. Please note that the fat in millets are of a totally different kind when compared to the fat from animal sources or even the fat/oil from oil seeds. The fat content in cereals such as millets are very sought after component of many diets.
There is no one grain which is ‘the best’. Each millet has a nutrient profile that has certain beneficial aspects. For a healthy diet, please maintain a diversity in the cereals you consume – just as it is advisable to eat different vegetables, pulses, fruits, oil seeds, etc. There is no magic bullet.
Millets are getting popular and hence costlier. People who are used to rice find it easy to adopt some of the millets compared to wheat. South Indian rasam goes well with some of the millets just as rice.
It is best to have diversity in the food – we suggest that you increase the millets proportion in the food and avoid eating of White paddy rice. Change to unpolished paddy rice and when you use wheat for Chapathi add other millets grain to wheat and use. Gradually you can bring down the proportion of Paddy and wheat and shift to more millets based diet.
Hi, I see that the fat in rice is much much lesser when compared to millets and wheat!! Of course carbohydrates content is high (high in wheat as well) and fibre is really low. But please, if fat is less in rice why not eat rice instead?
the paddy rice contains in its whole form(unpolished) contains fat, the rice bran oil that we are all using today is the product of processing the Paddy rice bran. India produce over 7 million tonnes of Rice bran from the rice mills present in the country, from this 9 lakh tonnes of rice bran is produced every year in our oil mills. The rice bran oil comes from the fat present in the rice bran. When you analyse the polished paddy rice it shows no fat. Remember these fat are natural part of any whole grain food and are very essential for our body to keep us healthy.