Ragi, scientifically known as Eleusine coracana, is an annual grain crop widely grown in Africa and Asia's tropical regions, such as Ethiopia, India, and Sri Lanka. Ragi gives numerous health benefits such as improving digestion, lowering the risk of heart disease, slowing the ageing process, and managing diabetes because it is densely packed with a variety of nutrients.
Ragi is also known as finger millet because of the look of the grain head, which has five spikes and so resembles the five fingers attached to the palm of the hand. The seeds are placed in florets on the straight or curved branches, which might be brown, red, or purple in colour. It is known by several different names in different parts of India, including "Ragi" in Kannada, Hindi, and Telugu, "Nachni" in Marathi, "Madua" in Bengali, and "Kezhvaragu" in Tamil.
Ragi nutrition content
Ragi has an outstanding nutritional profile, with high quantities of vital micronutrients like vitamins and minerals, as well as all of the major macronutrients including carbohydrates, fibres, fats, and proteins. It has very low cholesterol and sodium levels, which helps to keep your heart healthy. Ragi also includes significant amounts of vitamins C and E, which help to improve immunological, skin, and hair health.
Ragi flour is high in the B complex vitamins thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, and folic acid, as well as calcium, magnesium, iron, and phosphorus, proving its reputation as a healthy breakfast cereal and superfood. Ragi is a high-fiber Indian meal that can be used instead of rice, wheat, or barley in Indian diets. It is a relatively rare plant source of important amino acids such as isoleucine, tryptophan, valine, methionine, and threonine, and hence complements both vegetarian and vegan diets.
Benefits of ragi for weight loss
The best part about including ragi into your diet is that it is gluten-free. Gluten is a major contributor to weight gain. Gluten-free foods, especially those that are high in fibre, aid in weight loss, particularly in the stomach area. It is an excellent source of nourishment for celiac disease sufferers. When it comes to people who are attempting to lose weight, ragi is an excellent source of fibre. It aids in the management of diabetes in the body while also ensuring that the individual is healthy and strong. Ragi also helps to prevent weight, increase energy, enhance digestion, and avoid chronic diseases. Ragi should be consumed regularly, particularly by breastfeeding moms.
- Combats deficiencies
Inflammation and anemia are caused by an iron deficit in the body. Ragi is high in vitamin C, which aids iron absorption in the bloodstream. This aids in the natural treatment of anaemia. Ragi seeds and sprouts also aid in iron absorption, as well as weight control and inflammation reduction in the body.
- Induces sleep
A good night's sleep and a calm mind aid with weight maintenance. Ragi is beneficial to one's cognitive wellness. It aids in the treatment of anxiety, sleeplessness, headaches, and depression by calming the nerves. The presence of tryptophan, an amino acid, aids in nerve relaxation.
- Manages cholesterol
Ragi aids in the prevention and treatment of high blood pressure and cholesterol. Not only may including ragi in your daily diet lower your risk of cardiovascular disease, but it can also lower your risk of stroke. Ragi, in its raw form, aids in the prevention of plaque development and vessel obstruction. As a result, the risk of hypertension, heart disease, and stroke is greatly reduced.
- Helps in digestion
Ragi is high in dietary fibre, which aids digestion and helps to reduce constipation and other digestive issues. Dietary fibre helps to keep the stomach full and prevents overeating. Furthermore, it is gluten-free, which is a significant benefit.
- Great source of proteins and amino acids
The building blocks of the human body are proteins, and Ragi is a great source of natural protein. It's also high in amino acids, which help the body function properly and play a key part in tissue repair. Ragi is also abundant in minerals like calcium, iron, and riboflavin, all of which are extremely important to our general health. Valine, Threonine, Isoleucine, Methionine, and Tryptophan are the essential amino acids found in Ragi.
Healthy recipes using ragi for weight loss:
- Ragi porridge
A nutritious and delectable breakfast recipe that your kids will enjoy as well! It's also gluten-free and easy to stomach. It is one of the most effective weight-loss recipes.
- Ragi mudde
These nutrient-dense balls, also known as ragi balls, are typically served with sambar or another curry.
- Ragi cookies
These crunchy cookies are a healthy snack recipe that also happens to be delicious.
- Ragi idli
Another great breakfast option for reducing weight and kicking off your day with a healthy boost
- Ragi rotis
Ragi can also be consumed in the shape of soft rotis, which are as simple to prepare.
Precautions and risks
Ragi should be consumed in moderation because excess of anything is undesirable. Ragi can cause an increase in the amount of oxalic acid in the body, which is why it is not suggested for individuals with kidney stones. As a result, it is clear that Ragi is a powerhouse of healthful nutrients. It fights infections, soothes the body, and aids in overall health maintenance. As a result, it should be a regular part of your diet.
Ragi is an extremely beneficial cereal crop that may be consumed by individuals of all ages. It is a true superfood, rich in all important nutrients such as dietary fibres, proteins, iron, calcium, antioxidants, and vitamins, as well as being gluten-free and hence suitable for individuals with special cereal and gluten allergies.