Foxtail Millet: A Boon For Health

Long list of millets includes Proso, Teff, Pearl, Finger but it is not possible to include all these millets in the diet in one go. But the top five that have been making way to our diet are Little, Kodo, Barnyard, Foxtail and Brown Top. These millets can actually help us in getting rid of several diseases that we suffer from. Did you know that water, desertification, global warming, and carbon footprints are some of the serious problems that that these five millets can solve? 

This piece is dedicated to Foxtail millet known as ‘Kangni’ in Hindi, ‘Korralu’ in Telugu, ‘Korul’ in Tamil and ‘Navane’ in Kannada. It is an annual grass and known as the second-most widely planted species of millets. This millet majorly grows in Karnataka, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu and in parts of Northeast India, as per the Indian Institue of Millets Research.  

Some historians have claimed that the oldest cultivation of foxtail millet was found along the ancient course of the Yellow River in Cishan, China. Foxtail millet is packed with nutrients and considered good for smooth digestion and healthy heart. As per a report of shethepeople, the protein content of Foxtail millet is 2.3 gm % which is the highest in its class. Moreover, its fibre content is 8.0. Let us know more about the benefits of its health benefits.  

Manages Diabetes Level 

Many people don’t know but foxtail millet could be a great substitute for rice. This millet prevents unwanted hunger pangs and avoid sudden spike in sugar levels. Because of being a low glycaemic index food, it could be highly beneficial. 

Promotes Stronger Bones 

Because of being rich in calcium and iron, foxtail millets are extremely beneficial for muscles and bones. They fulfil the calcium requirements of the body and fights diseases like inflammation, arthritis, spondylitis and brittle bones.  

Aids Weight Loss 

Foxtail millet is packed with high content of Tryptophan which avoids hunger pangs and keeps you full for a longer time. Besides, it also prevents the accumulation of fats on the body and thus is considered ideal for weight loss. 

Promotes Good Heart Health 

Rich in protein, foxtail millet is gluten-free as well as low in carbs. This property helps in the formation of neurotransmitter acetylcholine and smoothens the transfer of messages between muscle and nerves. 

Works As Immunity Booster 

Foxtail millet is loaded with nutrients and thus also acts as an immunity booster. It helps in keeping up the stamina and keep infections and diseases at bay.  

Vishesh Tippani 

Foxtail millet needs to be soaked in water for at least 6-8 hours because of its high carbohydrate-to-fibre ratio. Soaking ensures the breakdown of phytic acid responsible for impairing nutrient absorption. 

Just now we have discussed about the benefits of Foxtail millet, let us give you a quick recipe of Foxtail idli that you can make at home. Pair this idli with sambar or chutney, as per your wish. Here you go! 


  • 1 cup foxtail millet 
  • 2 cups white urad dal 
  • 1 tsp methi seeds 
  • Salt to taste 


  • Wash and soak millets in a bowl. Also soak methi seeds and urad dal in another bowl for at least 8 hours. 
  • When done, drain the excess water from urad dal and blend it to form a thick and smooth batter.  
  • Keep it aside. Meanwhile, blend foxtail millet separately. 
  • Then, transfer both the batters together and mix. 
  • Also add 2 tsp salt and mix well. 
  • Keep it for fermentation for at least 5 to 6 hours. 
  • Thereafter, pour the batter into idli makers after greasing it properly with oil. 
  • Steam the idlis for 9 to 10 minutes.  
  • When done, remove the idlis and serve with sambar or chutney.