Millets have been said to be one of the first grains to be domesticated, and evidence suggests that it was consumed during the ancient Indus valley civilization. The post-independence food shortage crisis prompted the green revolution, and rice and wheat overtook millets as the primary grains in India. There has been a revival of interest in millets in recent years, and we say, better late than never! With this renewed interest, India is hoping to position itself as the global hub for millets.
The UN has declared 2023 as the International Year of Millets in response to a proposal by India that was supported by 70 nations. The move aims to create awareness about millets and their nutritional benefits, their importance for food security and the environment, and promote research and development.
What are millets and why are they important?
Millets are a family of small-seeded grasses that have been cultivated and eaten by humans for over 10,000 years. They are a versatile and nutritious food source, as well as a sustainable crop that is widely grown in India and some other countries in Asia and Africa.
The most common millets are pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum), finger millet (Eleusine coracana), foxtail millet (Setaria italica), proso millet (Panicum miliaceum), kodo millet (Paspalum scorbiculatum), little millet (Panicum sumatrense) and barnyard millet (Echinochloa frumentacea).
The importance of millets for your health
Millets are gluten-free, making them an excellent choice for individuals with gluten intolerance or celiac disease
- Millet is rich in B vitamins, iron, magnesium, phosphorous and potassium.
- It is also high in dietary fibre and antioxidants.
- They aid in weight reduction and control.
- Millets help in diabetes management.
- Millet is an excellent choice for those wishing to add more nutritious whole grains to their diet.
How can you include millets in your diet for health benefits?
Millets have multiple health benefits. They are an excellent choice for anyone looking to combine health and deliciousness. Not only are millets much lower in cholesterol than other grains, but they also contain abundant nutrients such as calcium and B vitamins. Incorporating millets into your diet is easy; you can cook them like rice or add them to salads, soups, and stews for extra texture and flavour. It can also be ground into flour and used to make flatbreads, pancakes and baked goods. Millets are so versatile that you may even experience unexpected benefits such as improved digestion and sustained energy levels throughout the day! So why not start adding more millets to your meals today? Your body will thank you!
How has the popularity of millets grown in recent years, and what's driving that trend?
In recent years, millets have gone from being seen as an old-fashioned, marginal food to becoming a new superfood that is all the rage among modern consumers. This shift has been driven mostly by increased interest in health and wellness, with people becoming increasingly conscious of their diet and looking for healthier alternatives to traditional staples. Millets are naturally high in fibre and other essential nutrients like zinc, magnesium, and iron. They also have very low levels of glycemic index, making them ideal for those monitoring their blood sugar levels or suffering from diabetic conditions.
Millets are also environment-friendly - they have a low carbon footprint and need much less water than traditional grains like rice. They can grow in soil with lesser nutrient content and low irrigation and are resistant to climate change.
This newfound awareness of the benefits of millets for health and food security has helped propel the demand and supply across India and the world.
Make Millets your Best Friends
Always look for farm-sourced and organic millets to add to your diet. You will be supporting your health and also the traditional farmers of the land. Grain Forests has been doing exactly that - connecting the conscious eater to the traditional growers of organic products. Our range of organic millets comes with the goodness of flavour and nutrition. All of our grains are grown on indigenous family-run farms, ensuring the highest quality and sustainability standards. With Grain Forests, you can enjoy delicious organic millet without worrying about its origin or quality. Visit grainforests.com today and start living healthy!
The information contained in the article does not constitute medical advice. Speak to your doctor before making any dietary changes.