Pearl Millet Description
Pearl Millet (Cenchrus Americanus, commonly known as Pennisetum glaucum) is the most widely grown type of millet. Bajra is the traditional Hindi name for Pearl Millet. Some common names of Pearl Millet are Dukn, Cumbu, Gero, Sanio, Kambu, Babala, or Bulrush millet. Pearl Millet grows in various shades of white, yellow, gray, brown, and bluish-purple. Pearl Millets or Bajra can be found in multiple edible forms for daily consumption. It can be used it as flour to make flatbreads or dosa, grains to make porridge, processed grains as poha or upma for breakfast, and ready to eat snacks or multigrain cookies. The enormous health benefits of Bajra make it a perfect nutraceutical food, optimum for regular consumption by all.
Bajra is of high nutritional value and thus is one of the healthiest edible millet in Indian Households. It contains Calories: 201, Protein: 6 grams, Fat: 1.7 grams, Carbohydrates: 40 grams, Fiber: 2 grams, Sodium: 286 mg, Folate: 8% of the Daily Value (DV), Iron: 6% of the DV, Magnesium: 18% of the DV, Thiamine: 15% of the DV, Niacin: 14% of the DV, Phosphorus: 14% of the DV, Zinc: 14% of the DV, Riboflavin: 11% of the DV and Vitamin B6: 11% of the DV.
Bajra is high in beneficial plant chemicals like antioxidants, polyphenols, and photochemicals, all of which contributes to optimal human health in many ways. Like most other millets, Bajra is a nutrient-dense ‘super food’ which is rich in protein, carbohydrates, vitamins, mineral and plant chemicals. Little babies and easily digest and tolerate the pearl millets and this makes them a mandatory ingredient for baby food preparations during the weaning period and even later on.
Health Benefits of Pearl Millet
Pearl Millets contain carbohydrates, essential amino acids, antioxidants, thiamine, riboflavin, folic acid, niacin, beta carotene, and minerals like iron, phosphorus, magnesium, and zinc. And because of these properties, it becomes a wonderful ‘super food’ which can be included in the diet without any doubt. It fulfills the requirements of an adult human body and along with this, people consider it as one of the most nutritious baby foods. So, here are some of the renowned health benefits of Pearl Millet or Bajra are:
Maintains Blood Sugar Level
Pearl Millet/Bajra contains ample amounts of carbohydrates that take time to digest and maintain a stable blood glucose level for a long period, and, this makes them a healthy food option for diabetics.
People with celiac disease and gluten intolerance can opt for a pearl millet-based diet because it is gluten-free and everyone can tolerate it easily.
Maintains Bone Health
The high phosphorus, iron and calcium content of Bajra helps in making your bones stronger. Along with this, it also provides stamina to the body.
Reduces Bad Cholesterol
Pearl millets contain an adequate amount of good fat which is the desired quality of food for high cholesterol patients.
Pearl Millet, being rich in dietary fibers, helps in preventing constipation, and therefore, keeps the digestive system healthy.
Ideal for Weight Management
It is an ideal ‘super food’ for weight management and obesity. Hence, provides proper nutrition to the weight conscious people.
Rich in Antioxidants
Bajra being rich in antioxidants, reduces the free radical damage in the body and prevents early ageing. Further it prevents Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, cardiovascular diseases, and also, aids in wound healing.
Pearl millet or Bajra is one of the few foods which reduce the acidity of the stomach thereby, limiting ulcer formation and discomfort due to frequent bouts of acidity.
Healthy Recipes of Pearl Millet
Pearl Millet or Bajra or Kambu is one of the most prominent millets and is widely used because of the health benefits it offers, and so, here we present the 5 Most Loved Recipes of Pearl Millet:
Pearl Millet or Bajra Idli
We require whole Bajra, rice, urad dal and a few fenugreek seeds to make the batter. And then we ferment the batter and cook it.
Pearl Millet or Bajra Dosa
We prepare it with pearl millet, pressed rice, salt, water, urad dal, fenugreek seeds and refined oil.
Pearl Millet or Bajra Khichdi
We can make it like the normal moong dal khichdi with Bajra, moong dal, salt and ghee.
We usually prepare it with Bajra dough, like a normal roti, water and ghee.
We cook them by using Bajra flour, ghee and cardamom. Firstly, we prepare the dough using all these ingredients and then we bake them in an oven.