Ragi The Super Food – 5 Best Health Benefits Of Eating Ragi
Ragi is an annual herbaceous plant widely grown as a cereal crop in the arid and semiarid areas in Africa and Asia. It is a tetraploid and self-pollinating species probably evolved from its wild relative Eleusine africana.
Ragi is a rich source of good carbohydrates and since it is too tiny to be polished or processed it is mostly consumed in its purest form. The cereal is gluten-free and highly suitable for those who are gluten or lactose intolerant. Besides this, it can easily become a part of your daily diet in the form of chappatis for breakfast. Some modern spins on finger millets include Ragi Cookies and Ragi Flakes (Noodles) that make for easy-to-cook and healthy snacks.
Good for Weight Loss
It holds a significant place in diet programs for weight loss. A special amino acid, Tryptophan present in Ragi helps in curbing appetite. It has a higher rate of fiber compared to any other grain or rice. The high amount of dietary fiber combines with water and keeps the stomach fuller for a longer period of time. It is low in unsaturated fats that make it the ideal cereal for those looking to lose weight. The heaviness of the dietary fiber slows down the rate of digestion thereby keeping us fuller for longer with very less calories.
Improves Bone Strength
It is loaded with calcium and vitamin D that makes it a vital component for increasing bone strength. Go natural, replace over the counter calcium supplements with Ragi porridge that works as a super calcium supplier for growing children and aging people. It helps development of bones in children, maintains bone health and prevents bone erosion in adults. It also works as an effective food to avert Osteoporosis.
Regular consumption of Ragi has been found to reduce the risk of Diabetes Mellitus because of its high content of dietary fibers and polyphenols. It has a higher amount of fiber compared to rice, wheat or any other grains. The high level of fibers in Ragi slows down the pace of digestion thereby helping in lowering blood sugar levels. It also has a low glycemic index that makes it an ideal snack to prevent late night food cravings and help to maintain blood sugar within safe range.
It has been proved to work wonders in bringing down blood cholesterol levels. And is one of the best home remedies for heart health. It controls the cholesterol level by reducing plaque formation and preventing blockage of blood vessels. Thereby cutting down the risk of stroke and other heart diseases. The key amino acids Lecithin and Methionine present in the cereal helps in lowering cholesterol by extracting and cutting out excess fat from the liver, and the amino acid Threonine prevents formation of fat in the liver. Ragi, in the unripe, green form can also help in controlling high blood pressure and hypertension.
The abundance of antioxidants, and amino acids in Ragi help in fighting damage causing free radicals and reducing oxidative stress. It works as a natural relaxant and helps in relieving stress related ailments like anxiety, hypertension, depression and headaches. It also helps in relieving sleep disorders like Insomnia along with cerebral pains and Migraine.