Bajra or pearl millet is dense in nutrients and consumed mainly in two forms, cereal grains or flour. These millets are a good source of protein and carbs and are also rich in antioxidants. There are a variety of ways in which this super-healthy grain is eaten in India during winter, including bajre ki roti, khichdi and raab.
Winter is all about relishing warm and comforting food, be it gajar ka halwa or Kashmiri gushtaba. It is very important to consume nutrient-rich food during this season to protect oneself from cold, flu and other winter illnesses. Millets are one such food that has remarkable benefits and is also gluten-free. There are various types of millet available in India that not only improve immunity but also promote weight loss. Bajra, also known as pearl millet, is one of them.
These tiny grains are dense in vital nutrients and are consumed in two forms, cereal grains or flour. These millets are a good source of protein and carbs and are also rich in antioxidants. According to Healthline, it is packed with multiple vitamins and minerals that makes it a perfect source of carbohydrates.
Here are five reasons to include bajra in your winter diet:
1. Weight Management
If you are trying to lose weight during winter, then bajra is an ideal solution. It not only keeps you warm during winter but provides greater satiety which prevents overeating. Being low in calories, pearl millet ensures a continuous flow of energy.
2. Heart Health
Known for being rich in protein, bajra is helpful in flushing out extra sodium from the body. This is beneficial for maintaining blood pressure. Pearl millet also contains an adequate amount of healthy fat that is good for cholesterol maintenance. Overall, bajra is useful for promoting heart health.
3. Gut Health
Being packed with insoluble fibre, pearl millet is beneficial in maintaining digestive health. They are also effective in preventing constipation and if you are gluten-intolerant, this millet is perfect for you as it provides all required nutrients.
4. Protein For Vegetarians
Protein is essential for immunity building and during winter, it helps in fighting against viruses that cause cold and flu. But as vegetarians, we cannot get the needed protein from meat and fish products so pearl millet can compensate for the requirement of protein.
5. Bone Health
Just like other millets, bajra is also rich in phosphorus and calcium which helps in making the bones stronger. During winter, the blood flow in the peripheral areas of the body decreases that can lead to stiffness and pain in the joints. Therefore, it’s important to eat calcium-rich food during winter.
There are a variety of ways in which this super-healthy grain is consumed in India during winter. Bajre ki roti is the most popular among all dishes. Also known as bajra bhakri, this gluten-free flatbread makes a wholesome meal during the cold weather when paired with lentils or any vegetable curry. Bajre ki khichdi is another nutritious meal that is made during winter. Popular in regions like Rajasthan and Haryana, this comforting khichdi is made with bajra and moong dal along with a few spices and herbs.
But have you tried bajra raab? This winter-special drink is a staple in the state of Gujarat and Haryana. It is a thick porridge that is served specially at Rajasthani weddings and is very simple to make. Just roast bajra flour in desi ghee and carom seeds and season with ginger powder. Add a pinch of salt along with jaggery for flavour. Add water to it and let it boil. This recipe is good for building immunity during winter and is also recommended for pregnant and nursing mothers, as it is very nutritious for them.
Make sure you include bajra in your winter diet and keep yourself and your family safe during this chilly season.