Nutritional composition of millet, another undeservedly neglected traditional culture at the expense of modern-day super foods such as quinoa and chia. Most often it can’t even be found in the store, even at the food stalls. And if you ask for it, you will be directed to bird food. Extremely undeserved for such useful, cheap and delicious food.

Nutritional composition of millet
Nutritional composition of millet

Millet – food with a long history in the modern world

Millet is among the oldest cultures that humanity has lived on. Traces of it have been discovered 7,000 years ago in the remains of ceramic products that served for my preservation – first in Ethiopia and later in India and Pakistan. Prior to the spread of rice, it was also a major cereal crop in China. Millet is not actually a grain, but a seed of a family of plants under the generic name Panicum miliaceum L. (in English Millet). It is extremely durable and needs very little water, but it tolerates hot sun.

These peculiarities make it a common food in the poorest and scarcest natural resources. Its pest resistance makes it uninteresting for pesticide-producing companies, and it is one of the cleanest crops. India is the leader in production with over 10 million tonnes a year, followed by Nigeria and Niger. In Bulgaria, the millet was talked about during the founding of the Bulgarian state and for centuries the people ate a millet (in which maize flour was also heavily involved) – tough bread that does not flourish but is satiating and difficult to mold.

Millet is made from the finest boza, and there is a similar drink, with varying degrees of alcohol content, in all countries where it is grown. Today, millet deserves its own Renaissance, because against the backdrop of other gluten-free superfoods from the other side of the world, it is far cheaper, and the benefits are few, even more so.

Nutritional composition of millet: Calories 1,582 kJ (378 kcal), Carbohydrates – 72.8 g (of which fiber – 8.5 g), Fat 4.2 g (of which polyunsaturated – omega-3 – 0.1 g, omega-6 – 2.0 g
Protein – 11.0 g, Vitamin B1 0.42 mg (37% of daily requirement), Vitamin B2 0.29 mg (24%), Vitamin B 4.72 mg (31%), Vitamin B5 0.85 mg (17%), Vitamin B6 0.38 mg (29%), Vitamin B9 85 μg (21%), Vitamin K 0.9 μg (1%), Calcium 8 mg (1%), Iron 3.0 mg (23%), Magnesium 114 mg (32%), Manganese 1.6 mg (76%), Phosphorus 285 mg (41%), Sodium 195 mg (4%), Zinc 1.7 mg (18%), Cuprum 0.8 mg, Selenium 2.7 µg, glycemic index

Millet and health benefits

First of all, millet is a gluten-free food and is suitable for people with nutritional intolerance to gluten. This puts her on a very limited list of products and her price stands out immediately. The second trend in nutrition, in which it fits perfectly, is that millet remains an alkaline food after cooking. If we are careful about the alkaline-acid balance, it is again an excellent choice. It has recently been argued that maintaining the alkaline environment is the most potent anticancer agent.

Millet is a food with many health applications. Taken together, but especially because of magnesium, it is extremely beneficial for menopausal women because of the increased risk of breast cancer, osteoporosis and inflammation of the joints.  It protects the heart and arteries from sclerosis, increases heart tone. Prevention of diabetes II and high “bad” cholesterol.
Phosphorus is involved in the construction of our DNA code – nucleic acids, and is an important element of a healthy cell. Therefore, it is recommended to consume millet when recovering from disease. The high amount of fiber and easy absorption protects against any conditions of the digestive system and also from kidney stones. Of particular importance is the importance of fiber to colon health, where many other diseases begin.

About cooking

Millet is more useful to consume bleached and polished – it does not lose valuable qualities, but it overcomes tannins in its hard shell. The fibers in the sheath are also found in the grain itself and remain part of its useful properties. The peeled millet is washed thoroughly until the water is clear and can soak for 1-2 hours. Another option is to put on a dry pan and crack the nipples to whisk faster. But overall – it doesn’t need a lot of culinary processing. Millet can participate in any recipes with rice, couscous, buckwheat, bulgur, etc. It has a soft but relatively neutral taste. It absorbs a lot of water and boils in a ratio of 1: 2.5 water. After boiling, the heat is reduced and allowed to simmer for about 25-30 minutes. If we want a creamy texture – stir and gradually boil. If we hold the individual grains – we do not mix, but finally add the fat and mix it very slightly to penetrate it between the grains.