Finger millet, commonly known as Ragi, is grown as a serial crop in Africa and Asia. The crop can grow in harsh weather conditions, making it perfectly suitable for Indian climatic conditions. Ragi is a whole grain and is a staple in South India.
We bring you some amazing benefits of Ragi
-High protein content: Ragi is rich in protein. There are also significant quantities of tryptophan, cystine, methionine and total aromatic essential amino acids. Hence it is considered as a good source of protein for vegetarians because its methionine content is about 5 per cent of the total protein.
-Rich source of minerals: It has highest calcium content compared to other cereals. It is also rich in minerals like phosphorus, potassium and iron. Finger millet is a healthier alternative for people who might be at risk of osteoporosis or have low hemoglobin levels.
-Diabetes Control: Ragi contains high amount of fiber and phytochemicals. All these components are usually found in the outer layer of the grain (seed coat), and so, consuming this whole grain can help control diabetes.
-Anti-Microbial properties: Finger millet has been found to act against bacteria causing food poisoning, typhoid-like fever or those causing skin infections such as abscesses, furuncles, and cellulitis.
-Anti-cancer potential: It contains antioxidants that prevent excessive oxidation, thereby reducing the risk of cancer and ageing caused due to cell damage.
-Reduces “bad” cholesterol, prevents cardiovascular disease: It reduces the concentrations of serum triglycerides and inhibits lipid oxidation and LDL cholesterol oxidation.
Ragi in diet
Recipes that can be made using Ragi include dosa, vermicili, kanji, malt water (sweet or salty), ragi balls, roti.
(Bipasha Das is a certified health coach and nutritionist. She runs a diet and wellness clinic ‘Sugati’. She has been awarded Most Recommended Nutritionist of the Year 2018-19 by Brands Impact. She has worked with top hospitals, and is a life member of the Indian Dietetic Association and on the panels of renowned corporate houses like Ericsson, GE Power. Bipasha is working with Municipal Corporation of Delhi - Public Health Department( South Zone) as a consultant, and creating awareness programmes on Women and Children Health, Health for Public Health Workers, Office Sedentary Workers etc.
*Answers are based on general queries. Please contact a professional for any personal treatment.)