Millet

No, it’s not just a food for birds. Millet, technically a seed rather than a grain, is comparable to oatmeal in its health benefits and versatile like rice in its flavor and texture. Fluffy, creamy, and versatile. What’s there not to love?

Disease/Ailment

High blood pressure
Type 2 diabetes
Breast cancer risk
Constipation

Health benefits

Heart health: Magnesium has been shown to lower blood pressure especially in individuals with atherosclerosis and diabetic heart disease.
Diabetes: whole grains contain fiber that is beneficial in preventing sharp blood sugar spikes in type 2 diabetics.
Breast cancer prevention: the fiber in whole grains have been shown to lower the risk of breast cancer. Plant lignans, phytochemicals that are abundant in whole grains, are thought to protect against breast and other hormone-dependent cancers.
GI health: soluble and insoluble fiber are concentrated in whole grains and encourage healthy digestion and excretion.

Purchasing, storing, and enjoying

Purchasing: millet can be purchased in most grocery stores and health foods stores either prepackaged or in bulk. Millet is also commonly sold in prepackaged mixes with other whole grains.

Storing: millet can be stored in an airtight container in a cool, dry, and dark place where it will hold for six months.

Enjoying: rinse millet thoroughly before cooking. Add one part grain to two and a half parts boiling water or broth. After liquid has returned to a boil reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 25 minutes which will produce a fluffy texture. For a creamy texture, as a little water once in a while during the cooking process. For a nutty flavor toast grains before boiling them in liquid.
Add millet to breakfast cereal, salads, soups and stews.

References:

Anderson JW, Hanna TJ, Peng X, Kryscio RJ. Whole grain foods and heart disease risk. J Am Coll Nutr 2000 Jun;19(3 Suppl):291S-9S. 2000. PMID:17670.

Cade JE, Burley VJ, Greenwood DC. Dietary fibre and risk of breast cancer in the UK Women’s Cohort Study. Int J Epidemiol. 2007 Jan 24; [Epub ahead of print] . 2007. PMID:17251246.

Ensminger AH, Ensminger, ME, Kondale JE, Robson JRK. Foods & Nutriton Encyclopedia. Pegus Press, Clovis, California. 1983.

Ensminger AH, Esminger M. K. J. e. al. Food for Health: A Nutrition Encyclopedia. Clovis, California: Pegus Press; 1986. 1986. PMID:15210.

Fortin, Francois, Editorial Director. The Visual Foods Encyclopedia. Macmillan, New York. 1996.

Jensen MK, Koh-Banerjee P, Hu FB, Franz M, Sampson L, Gronbaek M, Rimm EB. Intakes of whole grains, bran, and germ and the risk of coronary heart disease in men. Am J Clin Nutr 2004 Dec;80(6):1492-9. 2004. PMID:15585760.

Wood, Rebecca. The Whole Foods Encyclopedia. New York, NY: Prentice-Hall Press; 1988. 1988. PMID:15220

Ashley Kim
Ashley Kim

"Our bodies are our gardens—our wills are our gardeners." – William Shakespeare

1 Comment
  1. Thank you so much for your articles on different fruits and vegetables!! I write reviews on them every week for my Science class!! Please continue to post them, they really encourage me to want to eat healthier and enjoy the health benefits!!!!

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