10 Health benefits of Millet
You might have thought that millet was only used as an animal feed and a bird seed, but it is rapidly gaining popularity as a grain for human consumption, because it is gluten free and it is highly nutritious. Millet has been cultivated for centuries, primarily in Africa and India, and it is a staple part of the diet for some people. The most popular type of millet grain that is grown is called pearl millet, which contains a whole range of nutrients and essential minerals and it tastes good too. It’s so easy to add millet to your diet, because it can be used in many different recipes, including smoothies, in baking, soups and stews. So, if you thought millet was just a bird seed, here are ten of the wonderful health benefits of millet.
1. Helps to protect against diabetes
Millet is a good source of magnesium, which is known to increase the effectiveness of insulin in the body and help to avoid diabetes developing. Studies have proven that people who eat a diet rich in magnesium have up to 30% less chance of developing Type 2 diabetes.
2. It provides a good source of energy
Millet is an amazingly cheap source of nutrition and energy, which is why it is so often eaten as a staple in poorer, developing countries. It has a high starch content, which provides energy and it is also a good source of fibre and protein. The amino acids that are found in pearl millet are also much easier for the body to digest, than those that are found in wheat.
3. It can be an aid to weight loss
Another one of great health benefits of millet is that adding it to your diet can also help you to lose weight. Because of the high fibre and protein content in the grain, millet will make you feel full up and keep you feeling full for longer. It will also provide you with a steady source of energy, so you won’t feel the need to eat snacks after you have eaten a meal that contains millet.
4. Prevents anaemia
Millet contains a perfect combination of ingredients to combat iron deficiency in the body. It has iron, which is what is needed to fight anaemia, but it also contains Vitamin C, which helps the body to absorb the iron into the bloodstream. Eating millet is said to be an even more effective remedy for anaemia, than taking simple iron supplements.
5. It is a gluten free alternative
If you suffer with gluten intolerance or celiac disease, then you could safely use millet as an alternative to wheat. You can use this healthy grain alternative in baking recipes for bread, cakes and biscuits.
6. Reduces cholesterol
One of amazing health benefits of millet is that it has also been found to be very effective at reducing the levels of cholesterol in the blood. Millet contains amino acids that help to reduce the production of plaque in the blood vessels that can lead to strokes and heart disease. It also helps to control the levels of fat that are deposited in the liver.
7. Prevents premature ageing
Millet can also be used to add nutrition to smoothies, and one of the amazing health benefits of millet is its ability to help stop premature ageing of the skin. Millet contains two powerful amino acids called Methionine and Lysine, both of which help to create collagen. Collagen is the substance that keeps skin firm, stops sagging of the skin and helps to stop wrinkles forming.
8. Keeps the digestive system healthy
If you suffer with digestive problems and constipation, then adding millet to your diet will improve the digestive system too. Millet contains plenty of fibre, both soluble and insoluble, that will help the food move through your system properly and keep you regular.
9. Helps you to relax
Millet contains the amino acid, tryptophan, which works as a natural relaxant. It will help you to feel less stressed out during the day and it will help you sleep better at night. The relaxing properties of millet can also help to reduce blood pressure, ward of tension headaches and reduce anxiety.
10. Increases the strength of bones
And finally, health benefits of millet also include stronger bones. Millet is one of the best natural sources of calcium that there is, as well as Vitamin D. Eating millet will strengthen the bones and the teeth, and it will help to prevent bone diseases, such as osteoporosis, in later life. It’s also a great way of providing children with the extra calcium that they need, while their bones and teeth are growing.
Do you know other health benefits of millet?