Pennisetum glaucum, or pearl millet, is known as Bajra in India. It is also known as bulrush millet, dukn, cumbu, gero, sanio, kambu and babala.
Bajra is commonly grown in Africa and India and comes in different colors. The colors are white, yellow, gray, brown and bluish purple.
According to studiesbajra is a millet with an excellent nutritional profile and an exceptionally high fiber content.
It is a slow-digesting starch, which takes longer to convert to glucose, provides energy and aids in weight loss. It is also a viable gluten-free option.
Bajra for Weight Loss – An Overview
Bajra, rich in vitamins and minerals, has many healing qualities. Grain is also good for your heart as it contains important vitamins like vitamin B6 and minerals like magnesium and potassium. In addition, it helps reduce blood sugar and cholesterol levels.
Asthma patients could benefit from its high antioxidant content. By helping with digestion and bowel movements, it helps prevent weight gain.
Is Bajra good for weight loss?
To research suggests that including low-calorie density whole grains in your diet, such as bajra, can be helpful if you’re trying to lose weight. The caloric density of bajra is 1.2. Bajra is a top-notch gluten-free source of fiber that aids in weight reduction and maintenance.
Whole grains are packed with phytonutrients, which function in our bodies as antioxidants. Moreover, Bajra contains a trace element, zinc, which is also crucial for human health. As a result, bajra is a fantastic alternative if you’re trying to adjust your diet to lose weight.
Note from The Fitness Freak
Bajra is rich in phytochemicals, polyphenols and antioxidants. All of these have the potential to improve health in different ways. However, according to a to study, the beneficial polyphenols in bajra prevent certain minerals (iron and zinc) from being absorbed by your body. Thus, it is essential to eat bajra in moderate amounts, so that it can benefit your health.
Benefits of Bajra for Weight Loss
In general, gluten-free meals are healthy for you. They help prevent celiac disease, in which gluten consumption damages the small intestine.
Also, you cannot consume gluten if you have celiac disease. As a gluten-free food, bajra is excellent for people with celiac disease.
Helps manage diabetes
Bajra contains a substantial amount of magnesium, which helps regulate the body’s glucose receptors. High in fiber, it also helps with weight control, which is crucial if you have diabetes.
Aid in digestion
Bajra is full of insoluble fiber, which aids digestion. Additionally, it decreases the release of bile acids and decreases the incidence of gallstone development. Fiber-rich foods are great for your digestive system.
All grains are beneficial for heart health, and bajra is no exception. It lowers blood pressure and helps the proper functioning of the cardiovascular system because it is rich in magnesium. As a result, it reduces your risk of heart attack or stroke.
Rich in protein
Bajra is also a high source of protein. Because they promote muscle growth and tissue healing, proteins are known as the “building blocks” of the body. Therefore, you need to incorporate protein into your diet.
How to consume Bajra?
Here are some ways to consume bajra:
Bajra is a versatile ingredient that you can substitute with wheat flatbread, rice, quinoa, oats, and other grains.
- Before cooking, soak the bajra for a few hours in water: Bring 2 cups of water and 1 cup of millet to a boil. Then lower the heat to simmer and continue cooking for about 15 minutes. A light, fluffy grain should result from this process.
- You can include up to an extra cup of water, milk, or broth to make your bajra more porridge-like. To bring out the rich, nutty flavor of the grain, you can toast the dry millet for a little while before adding the liquids.
- Bajra is frequently made into fine flour suitable for making roti and other flatbreads. In many recipes, bajra flour replaces other flours to produce pasta and cakes.
- You can also consume bajra as a bag of popcorn-flavored millet. But, again, you can either buy it or make it at home.
You can consume bajra in different ways, including in the form of flour. Rotis made from this flour are a more nutritious option than bread. However, it is important to be careful about how much bajra you eat, as it may affect your health. Regular consumption of bajra can lead to constipation due to its high fiber content.
Bajra or Jowar – Which is Better for Weight Loss?
This is a common question that puzzles many. One of the healthiest grains in the world is jowar. Also, jowar has a much higher content of nutritional fiber compared to bajra.
By preventing feelings of hunger, the high fiber content promotes higher levels of satiety, which reduces consumption. As a result, it helps people lose weight by preventing them from consuming too many calories. In addition, it is rich in essential vitamins and minerals.
Jowar is grown almost everywhere, but bajra is mainly grown in specific sites in Africa and India under certain climatic circumstances. Jowar has a range of phenolic components not seen in Bajra.
Bajra is a high source of insoluble fiber which minimizes the risk of developing gallstones by decreasing the production of bile acids.
As a result, eating bajra can prevent problems such as bloating, gas, cramps, and bowel issues. Overall, it promotes weight management and may even facilitate weight loss.
Plus, it can protect you against several health issues like celiac disease and heart disease.
Nutritionists recommend exciting ways to incorporate millets like bajra into your diet. Try experimenting with using it in place of quinoa or rice in your favorite grain-based meals.
You can even book a personal consultation with HealthifyMe experts to understand which food combinations work best for you.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Q. Can I eat bajra daily?
A: Yes, you can eat a small amount of bajra daily as it has many benefits including weight loss. But bajra rotis tend to raise body temperature in the heat, which some people may find troubling, so be careful.
Q. Which is better for weight loss: bajra or jowar?
A: The high quality fiber in jowar aids digestion, fights obesity and maintains healthy blood sugar levels. On the contrary, bajra is low in carbohydrates and rich in vitamins, minerals, essential amino acids, insoluble fiber, protein and other nutrients. As a result, it helps regulate blood sugar levels. However, jowar has the edge over bajra due to its range of phenolic components not found in bajra. Both are gluten-free options. Also, jowar and bajra help in weight loss.
Q. What happens if we eat bajra daily?
A: According to to researchRegularly eating whole grains like bajra can help ward off chronic diseases like diabetes, heart disease, and certain malignancies. However, bajra rotis tend to raise body temperature, which some people may find uncomfortable.
Q. Is bajra heavy on the stomach?
A: Yes. Due to their high fiber content, cereals take longer to pass from the stomach to the intestines. In this way, bajra effectively suppresses appetite for an extended period while being simple to eat.
Q. Which is better: ragi or bajra?
A: The main distinction between bajra and ragi is that bajra is a common millet which is much easier to obtain and widely used by people. However, despite being a healthier option, ragi is more difficult to market than other millets. Ragi is often shelled before use because the bottom of the grain is difficult to digest. It started to be combined with other cereals like rice and wheat to create regional dishes like idli, upma and rotis.
Q. Who should not consume bajra?
A: If your thyroid gland is not functioning properly, you should not eat bajra as it can make things worse and lead to further metabolic issues. Also, you should avoid it if you have a digestive problem.
Sources of support
1. Bora P, Ragaee S, Marcone M. Characterization of several types of millets as functional food ingredients. Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2019 Sep;70(6):714-724. DOI: 10.1080/09637486.2019.1570086. Published online April 10, 2019. PMID: 30969135.
2. Krishnan R, Meera MS. Pearl millet minerals: effect of treatment on bioaccessibility. J Food Sci Technol. 2018 Sep;55(9):3362-3372. DOI: 10.1007/s13197-018-3305-9. Published online June 27, 2018. PMID: 30150794; PMCID: PMC6098803.
3. Vernarelli JA, Mitchell DC, Rolls BJ, Hartman TJ. Dietary energy density and obesity: how consumption patterns differ by body weight. Eur J Nutr. 2018 Feb;57(1):351-361. DOI: 10.1007/s00394-016-1324-8. Published online October 13, 2016. PMID: 27738811.
4. Kirwan JP, Malin SK, Scelsi AR, Kullman EL, Navaneethan SD, Pagadala MR, Haus JM, Filion J, Godin JP, Kochhar S, Ross AB. A whole-grain diet reduces cardiovascular risk factors in overweight and obese adults: a randomized controlled trial. J Nutr. 2016 Nov;146(11):2244-2251. doi: 10.3945/jn.116.230508. Published online October 19, 2016. PMID: 27798329; PMCID: PMC5086786.