Sunday, September 11, 2011

The Health Benefits of Millet

While it may not be one of the more popular grains, millet is actually one of the healthiest. Wheat and gluten free and with the most alkaline pH of all the grains, it provides wholegrain nutrition in a versatile package. Millet can be enjoyed both as a sweet porridge or as a savory grain at main meals. The health benefits of millet include heart disease prevention, cancer prevention, digestive health and detoxification.

Millet Nutrition
Millet is a rich source of niacin, thiamin, magnesium and manganese. It is also a good source of carbohydrate. The carbohydrate in millet has a higher GI; making it a good post exercise meal for replacing lost blood sugar faster.

Millet and Heart Disease prevention
Millet is a good source of dietary fibre, which helps mop up unwanted cholesterol in the digestive system. It is also a good source of the cholesterol lowering B vitamin niacin and the blood pressure lowering mineral magnesium. A meta-analysis of 7 studies showed that people with the highest dietary fibre intake had the lowest cardiovascular risk.

Millet for Diabetes Prevention
The mineral magnesium forms part of the glucose-regulating compound (known as glucose tolerance factor), along with chromium and vanadium, which are also found in wholegrains. Studies have shown that regular consumption of wholegrains lowers Type 2 diabetes risk. In one 8-year trial of over 40,000 subjects, risk of Type 2 diabetes was found to be 30% lower in women who frequently consumed wholegrains compared to those who ate the least of these foods.

Millet and Cancer Prevention
Wholegrain compounds in millet may help with cancer prevention. A study of over 35,000 participants showed that those consuming the most wholegrains had a significant reduction in breast cancer risk compared to those with low wholegrain intakes. The main reasons for wholegrains offering protection have to do with their high fibre content as well as their high nutrient and antioxidant content. In addition, wholegrains contain special compound called lignans, which are converted by good bacteria in the gut into useful substance that can help prevent cancer.

Millet for digestive health
Another of the health benefits of millet is its ability to aid digestive health. Wholegrains are a rich source of insoluble fibre, which increases stool bulk and decreases the transit time of waste through the intestines.

Millet Aids Detoxification
Millet is a good grain to include in detoxification programmes because of its ability to make the blood more alkaline. It has the lowest pH of all the grains, making it a popular grain for detox.

Some of the key reasons millet is part of your healthy Body Ecology diet is because it:

* Does NOT feed pathogenic yeast (candida),
* Acts as a prebiotic to feed important microflora in your inner ecosystem
* Provides serotonin to calm and soothe your moods.
* Helps hydrate your colon to keep you regular.
* Is alkaline.
* Digests easily.

Millet is full of nutrients your body needs, such as:

* Magnesium
* Calcium
* Maganese
* Tryptophan
* Phoshorus
* Fiber
* B vitamins
* Antioxidants

And that's not all. Many studies have been done on millet nutrition to identify its benefits for your health. Here are some of the findings1:

* Magnesium in millet can help reduce the affects of migraines and heart attacks.
* Niacin (vitamin B3) in millet can help lower cholesterol.
* Phosphorus in millet helps with fat metabolism, body tissue repair and creating energy (phosphorus is an essential component ofadenosine triphosphate or ATP, a precursor to energy in your body)
* Millet can help lower risk of type 2 diabetes.
* Fiber from whole grains has been shown to protect against breast cancer.
* Whole grains have been shown to protect against childhood asthma.

How to Select and Prepare Healthy Millet
Shiloh Farms millet is a delicious, easily digestible, organic hulled millet that can be delivered directly to your door! Make the most of your millet nutrition with organic Shiloh Farms millet!
Millet can be found in some grocery stores, often in the ethnic foods section. However, to get the most from your millet, choose organic hulled millet.
Here's how to prepare your millet:

* Rinse it off and remove any stones or unhulled pieces.
* Then soak or sprout your millet for 8 - 24 hours prior to preparing it, so that you remove the phytic acid that binds up minerals and enzyme inhibitors that make it difficult to digest.
* Another great option to prepare your millet for easy digestion is to add a small amount of fermented liquid such as BE Wholegrain to the soaking water. Let the soaking millet remain at room temperature for 48 hours. Add a teaspoon of BE Wholegrain Liquid or your favorite probitioic liquid to your soaking water; it's an excellent way to add minerals and will make your grains even easier to digest.
* Cook millet as you would rice but with more water (3 cups water to 1 cup millet). However, if you soak millet, you won't need as much water when you cook it. After soaking, try 1 cup of millet to 2 or 2 ½ cups of water. You determine how much water to use depending on how soft you like your grain.
* You will know your millet is finished because the dark yellow color will become opaque.

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