Andhra Pradesh

Include millets in regular diet, say experts

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Millets are nutritious, non-glutinous and are not acid-forming foods

The practice of consuming rice and its allied products are ingrained in our DNA and its influence in the nutritional habits is undisputed. In the last few years, however, thanks to research on the role of rice, especially polished rice, in diabetes and weight gain, nutritionists assert that there is a need to include millets in one's diet for a healthy living.

For those who are health conscious and are wary about what they eat, experts suggest that millets should be a part of their daily regular diet. Millets are nutritious, non-glutinous (non-sticky) and are not acid-forming foods, thus making them very easy to digest.

“Millets are low in carbohydrate and take longer to digest. That's why breakdown of glucose is slower. It takes longer for glucose to enter bloodstream and hence blood sugar levels are stable. This is beneficial for diabetics who have to control rapid rise and decline of glucose in blood. Millets are high on fibre and satiate hunger quickly preventing from overeating,” Professor (Food and Nutrition) and Associate Dean, College of Home Science, ANGRAU, Dr. Anurag Chaturvedi.

Best bet

As part of the attempts to promote consumption of millets, the ANGRAU Home Science College organised a Millet Festival at People's Plaza. “There is a need for dietary modifications because of sedentary lifestyle. A proper diet has become very important and millets are the best bet,” says Dean, Home Science College, ANGRAU, Dr.A. Sharada Devi.

Rich in minerals

The most common millets available at Jowar (Sorghum), Bajra (Pearl Millet), Ragi (Finger Millet), Korra (Foxtail millet), Sama (Little millet) and Variga (Proso millet). “They have huge nutritive value. Bajra and Sama are high on fat while Ragi has lowest fat. They are rich in Iron and phosphorus. Ragi has the highest Calcium content among all the food grains. They are rich sources in B vitamins especially in Niacin, B6, Folic Acid, Calcium, Iron, Potassium, Magnesium and Zinc,” explains Ms. Anurag Chaturvedi.

There are myriad health benefits of millets. Regular consumption of millets is beneficial for postmenopausal women suffering from signs of heart ailments, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. They help women to combat occurrence of gallstones because they are rich in fibre.

They reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes because millets are rich in magnesium, which regulates secretion of glucose and insulin.

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Printable version | Dec 16, 2018 10:18:16 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/include-millets-in-regular-diet-say-experts/article3248602.ece

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