2022-23 announced as ‘International Year of Millet’; learn more about the ‘superfoods of the future’

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Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented the Union’s budget for 2022 on Tuesday, announcing 2022-23 as the International Year of Son.

“Support will be provided for the addition of post-harvest value, improving the consumptionand for branding millet products nationally and internationally,” said Sitharaman.

Previously, the country had observed 2018 as the National Year of Millet to boost production of the nutrient rich cereals.

Karishma Shah, an integrative nutritionist and holistic life coach, called them “the superfoods of the future”, welcomed the decision and advocated the use of millet.

“Millet is the superfood of the future. As Indians, it is our heritage, tradition and culture. For us, millet is very important because we have a very diverse variety of millet that is easily grown and available at a very affordable price. We need to embrace it more and include it in our subsistence allowance,” she said.

Highlighting the increase in cases of gluten intolerance due to wheat consumption, he said, “Due to the gluten content in wheat and genetically modified crops, many people are becoming gluten intolerant. So people are now trying to stay away from eating wheat and turn to millet. Eating millet is extremely beneficial due to your health and also spiritual benefits. Yes, many spiritual people do not eat wheat due to its effects on the body and mind, preferring millet because it is believed to create a synchrony between mind and body.”

He asked people to consume it to have a “healthy body, mind and soul”.

Earlier, celebrity nutritionist Rujuta Diwekar had suggested having a millet bhakri every day. Elucidating the many health benefits of millets, he said, “They are rich in fiber, amino acids, B vitamins, and minerals.”

Most people, however, consume millet in the form of nachni chips, tacos or multigrain bread, which is not the best way to extract all its nutrients, according to the nutritionist. To access all of her nutrients, she suggested eating millet chapati with sabzi, dal or chutney.

Benefits of millet, as shared by Diwekar

*Niacin, a type of B vitamin found in millet, is helpful for Energy production, nerve health and keep the digestive tract healthy. If you have food intolerances, this is very helpful.
*The magnesium, zinc, and fiber found in millet make it an excellent food for regulating blood sugar, especially for PCOD Y diabetes.
*The folic acid helps iron assimilation and improves skin, health and fertility.

In addition, he also shared a seasonal guide for millet.

*Pasha and makai are for winters
*Jowar is best for summers
*Ragi can be eaten throughout the year and can even be made into dosa, laddoo, etc.

The expert, however, said that millet is not a replacement for wheat and rice, which should continue to be consumed.

millet recipes

If you are looking for healthy and delicious millet recipes, try these:

*A warm almond jowar salad recipe that you can customize to your liking

*A fermented ragi kulcha recipe to make good use of discarded sourdough

*This is how you can make sindhi dodoh with sorghum millet

*A recipe to make khichdi exciting with millet

*This is how you can roll out a perfect millet paratha

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