The Best Millets for Winter: Why You Need to Incorporate Them Into Your Diet
Winter is a time when our bodies require extra nourishment to combat the cold weather and stay healthy. One excellent way to achieve this is by including millets in our diet. Millets are nutritious grains that offer a range of health benefits, making them a perfect addition to our winter meals. In this article, we will explore the top millets for winter and delve into the reasons why you should incorporate them into your diet.
1. Jowar (Sorghum): A Powerhouse of Nutrients
Jowar, also known as sorghum, is an incredibly nutritious millet that can provide a range of health benefits. It is rich in calcium, vitamin B, dietary fiber, iron, and phosphorus. These nutrients are essential for maintaining overall health and well-being. Additionally, jowar is loaded with antioxidants, which help protect the body against diseases like cancer.
You can easily incorporate jowar flour into your diet by making rotis or mixing it with other flours to create delicious dishes such as paranthas, khakras, pooris, cookies, and bread. For those with a sweet tooth, jowar flour can be used to make treats like banana cake or apple crumble.
2. Makki (Maize): A Gluten-Free Grain with Multiple Health Benefits
Maize, also known as corn, is another excellent millet to include in your winter diet. It is a rich source of vitamins A, B, and E, as well as essential minerals. Maize is high in fiber, which aids in digestion and is particularly beneficial for those following a gluten-free diet.
There are various ways to incorporate maize into your meals. You can use fresh corn in salads and soups, maize flour for baking cookies and breadsticks, or frozen corn with herbs and masala to make delicious chat.
3. Bajra (Pearl Millet): Managing Diabetes and Cholesterol Levels
Bajra, or pearl millet, is a millet that is rich in fiber and protein. It has been found to help manage diabetes and cholesterol levels. Bajra roti and khichdi are popular dishes made with this millet, but you can also experiment with bajra crepes, tarts, and wraps for a unique and nutritious meal.
4. Kangni (Foxtail Millet): A Heart-Healthy Grain
Foxtail millet, or kangni, is loaded with fiber, protein, antioxidants, iron, and copper. It helps in keeping heart disease and diabetes at bay. This millet can be used to make a variety of dishes, such as porridge, kheer, or added to idli and dosa batter as a substitute for rice. Its ability to remove bad cholesterol makes it an excellent choice for those looking to improve their immune system and promote weight loss.
5. Ragi (Finger Millet): A Calcium-Rich Superfood
Ragi, also known as finger millet, is a superfood that is rich in calcium. It is a great option for vegetarians who may struggle to meet their calcium needs without consuming non-vegetarian foods. Ragi is also beneficial for conditions like insomnia, depression, and anxiety. It is often recommended for diabetic and anemic patients due to its nutritional profile.
To incorporate ragi into your diet, you can make ragi roti, ragi porridge, ragi soup, or even use ragi flour to make delicious desserts like ragi laddoos. Ragi is a versatile millet that can be enjoyed throughout the year, but it is particularly beneficial during the winter months.
How to Incorporate Millets Into Your Winter Diet
Now that we've explored the top millets for winter, let's discuss how to incorporate them into your diet. We have put together a sample winter meal plan to give you some ideas:
Timings Menu Quantity Early Morning Herbal Tea/ Kadha + Soaked Almonds + Soaked Walnuts / Roasted Flaxseed Powder 1 Cup / 1 Fistful / 1 Teaspoon Breakfast Foxtail Millet Porridge/ Vegetable Daliya/ Ragi Idli / Methi Stuffed Paratha + Low Fat Milk/ Curd + Seasonal Fruit 1 Bowl / 1 Bowl / 4 Small Pieces / 2 No. / 1 Medium Glass / 1 Bowl / 1 Whole Mid-Morning Snack Vegetable Soup / Tulsi Ginger Tea 1 Bowl / 1 Cup Lunch Green Salad + Vegetable (Mixed Vegetable/ Peas Mushroom/ Peas with Carrot And Cabbage/ Methi with Carrot / Sarso Ka Saag) + Rajma Curry/ Mix Dal/ Whole Dal + Multigrain Chapati/ Palak Roti/ Makki Roti / Millet Roti + Curd/ Bathua Raita 1 Bowl / 1 Bowl / 1 Bowl / 2 No. / 1 Bowl Evening Snack Herbal Tea + Roasted Chana/ Boiled Sweet Potato/ Corn Chaat 1 Cup / 1 Handful / 1 Bowl Dinner Broccoli Salad/ Cabbage Salad + Palak Paneer/ Spinach Curry/ Radish Leaves Curry /Cauliflower Peas Vegetable/ Vegetable Kadhi + Split Lentils + Jowar Roti/ Multigrain Chapati/ Bajra Roti/ Bajre Ki Khichdi Or Rasam/SoupRagi Idli Sambhar with Coconut and Mint Chutney/ Green Moong Dal Dosa with Sambhar 1 Bowl / 1 Bowl / 1 Bowl / 2 No. / 1 Bowl / 1 Bowl / 1 Serving / 1 Piece Post Dinner Turmeric Milk/ Milk with Dates 1 Glass / 1 Glass + 2 No. It is important to note that millets can be used in various forms, such as flour or whole grains, and can be incorporated into a wide range of dishes. You can experiment with different recipes and find what works best for you and your taste preferences.
Other Ways to Enjoy Millets
In addition to the sample winter meal plan, there are several other ways to enjoy millets in your diet.
- Naario's 9 in 1 Flour Mix: Consider using Naario's 9 in 1 flour mix, which contains the goodness of 8 different millets and chana. This flour mix is a convenient and nutritious option for incorporating multiple millets into your meals.
- Naario's Millet Muesli: For a healthy snack option or dessert, try Naario's Millet Muesli. It is a delicious and nutritious blend of millets and other ingredients, providing a satisfying and wholesome treat.
By exploring different millet-based products and recipes, you can add variety to your winter diet and reap the benefits of these nutritious grains.
Incorporating millets into your winter diet is a great way to nourish your body and promote overall health. The top millets for winter, including jowar, makki, bajra, kangni, and ragi, offer a range of health benefits, from providing essential nutrients to managing diabetes and cholesterol levels. You can easily incorporate millets into your meals through various recipes, such as rotis, parathas, porridge, and desserts. Additionally, products like Naario's 9 in 1 flour mix and Millet Muesli offer convenient and nutritious options for enjoying millets. Embrace the goodness of millets this winter and experience the health benefits and warmth they provide.