Everyone wants to stay healthy, there is no question about that. Especially in these times when we all are facing the pandemic of this highly contagious coronavirus.
And if you are looking for foods that can keep you healthy and active, then millets are one of the best answers for you.
So, you will know here in a brief what are the health benefits of millets and why it can be a good idea to add this cereal into your diet plan.
Health Benefits of Millets: 4 Reasons to Add It In Your Diet
1. Contains Antioxidants that Prevents Cell Damages
Millets are a rich source of phenolic anti-oxidants such as ferulic and catechins.
Antioxidants are chemical compounds that prevent oxidation in our bodies. Oxidation inside your body produces free radicals that damage your cells and tissues.
Research conducted in mice has found that ferulic may help in skin protection, wound healing, and inflammatory issues inside the body.
2. Helpful in Diabetes
Millets can be a boon for people with diabetes.
Reason? The cereal is rich in fiber and non-starchy polysaccharides and has a low glycemic index(GI), meaning it helps to control the blood sugar levels inside your body.
3. Reduces the Risk of Heart Attack
Millets also reduce the risk of heart attacks, as it helps in maintaining or lowering the cholesterol level inside your body.
Know a fact that Cholesterol is a waxy or fat-like substance that our body cells produce to make Vitamin D, hormones, and other substances which help indigestion. So it’s not as bad as it’s known to be!
Your cells produce enough cholesterol which is required for the proper functioning of your body. But its level may arise due to unhealthy eating habits like overconsumption of fatty foods. This may cause the formation of a substance called “plague” that sticks to the wall of your arteries. This can narrow or even block your arteries increasing the risk of heart attack and other cardiovascular diseases.
Millets provide your body with soluble fibers that produce a viscous substance inside your stomach and traps extra fats. This helps in reducing the cholesterol level inside your body.
4. Very Helpful for People with Celiac Disease
Millets being gluten-free can be a perfect meal for people looking to follow a gluten-free diet or suffering from celiac disease.
Celiac disease is a chronic disease of the digestive system where your body’s immune system starts reacting to the gluten, which damages your small intestine’s linings.
Know that gluten is a protein that is found in vegetarian foods such as wheat, barley, and rye.
However, before purchasing a millet packet, make sure it certifies on its pack that it is free from gluten.
A Small Downside of Millets
Millets are quite healthy meals, but it is also important to note that these cereals contain some anti-nutrients such as phytic acid and goitrogenic polyphenols.
Phytic acid reduces your body’s ability to absorb essential nutrients like potassium, magnesium, calcium, iron, and zinc.
Goitrogenic polyphenols are found to be responsible for causing Goitre, a thyroid disease that results in the enlargement of the thyroid gland. But these complications can only occur in case of overconsumption of millets, ie. if consumed more than 73% of the total daily calorie intake. And this situation will hardly arise when it’s made a part of your balanced diet.
But the good news is that you can reduce the antinutrient properties of millets by soaking it overnight (for 8-12 hours) and then cooking for consumption. The best option for most benefits will be to make millets sprout by soaking them for (2-3) days. Make sure you keep changing the water every night.
Last Words on Millets
So above was some benefits of eating millets.
Millets are overall very healthy foods to take as they are packed with nutrients such as proteins and antioxidants. Apart from reducing the risk of diabetes and heart attack, they fit perfectly in a gluten-free diet which is required for people with celiac disease.
Lastly, considering their anti-nutrient property, it can be greatly reduced by sprouting them. We can also say that excess of everything is bad and it goes with every food item that we consume.