Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Is millet beneficial for diabetics? An expert answers


There are many factors that play a role in managing diabetes, including diet.

From monitoring your carbohydrate intake to avoiding sugary foods, there are many changes you need to make to your daily routine to effectively manage your blood sugar levels.

In winter, it is important to choose immunity-boosting foods and diabetes-friendly foods such as millet (pearl millet); It is a nutritious grain widely grown and consumed in India and Africa. An essential ingredient in many cuisines. For this reason, nutritionist Dr. Manipal Hospital, India. Indrani Ghosh has listed the benefits of pearl millet for diabetic patients, according to a new report published by specialist medical website “onlymyhealth”.

Says Ghosh, “Mills are energy-rich and a good source of carbohydrates, essential amino acids, antioxidants, multivitamins like thiamin, riboflavin, folic acid, niacin, beta-carotene and minerals like iron, phosphorus and magnesium. and zinc. He added, “When mixed with pulses, millet becomes a good source of protein and contributes to a healthy diet.”

According to a study published in the Journal of Food Science and Technology, pearl millet is superior to other grains in terms of nutritional value. It is characterized by a balanced composition of amino acids and a high protein content with significant amounts of vitamin A. It is also considered a “high energy” grain due to its high oil content compared to corn.

Compared to wheat, sorghum, rice, and corn, pearl millet provides the same or higher levels of protein that balance amino acids, especially in methionine and lysine. It is higher than that found in maize and sorghum.

Additionally, it stands out for its mineral content, being a rich source of iron, zinc, magnesium, copper, manganese, potassium and phosphorus.

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Finally, the high niacin content in millet helps prevent pellagra (niacin deficiency disease).

According to the Indian Journal of Ophthalmology, nearly 70.7 million people in India were affected by diabetes in 2019, and this number is expected to increase by 2045.

Due to its nutritional composition, pearl millet is especially beneficial for diabetic Indians.

Ghosh adds, “The high fiber content makes millet a healthy choice and ideal food for diabetics. In general, dietary fiber slows down the digestion and absorption of carbohydrates, which prevents a rapid rise in blood sugar levels after a meal. A high-fiber diet like millet has been linked to improved insulin sensitivity, meaning the body can use insulin more effectively to control blood sugar levels. Additionally, millet is low on the glycemic index (GI), which measures how quickly a meal raises blood sugar (glucose). “A low glycemic index diet is associated with a lower risk of type 2 diabetes.”

How to include millets in your diet?

Ghosh called for “inclusion of millets in the diet in the form of chapati/roti, chili or porridge”. Add vegetables and hot pepper. It not only improves the taste of food but also avoids any kind of indigestion. Caution against taking every day. However, it can be slowly added to the diet; Initially millet should be eaten as chapati roti. Elderly people can eat it as porridge (roasted, ground and put in milk). People should check for any indigestion, allergic reactions or inflammation. If any problem persists after a few days, it is recommended to consult a nutritionist. The diet is changed, and after a gap of 10-15 days, millet consumption can be resumed.

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Millet is an important part of managing your diabetes. Its high fiber content contributes to better blood sugar control by slowing digestion, stabilizing glucose levels and improving insulin sensitivity. It promotes satiety and prevents unwanted weight gain, which helps keep blood sugar levels under control.

Remember that it is recommended to consult a doctor, health professional or nutritionist to plan your food choices to effectively manage diabetes.

Nadia Barnett
Nadia Barnett
"Award-winning beer geek. Extreme coffeeaholic. Introvert. Avid travel specialist. Hipster-friendly communicator."

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