Latin name: Panicum milaiceum

What is Millet?
The millets are a group of small-seeded species of cereal grains. Though technically a seed, millet is categorized as a grain from a culinary perspective. Coming in colors of white, gray, red, or yellow, the consistency of millet can be anywhere from creamy to fluffy, depending on how it is cooked. The most popular form of millet is the pearled, hulled variety.

The origin of millet is thought to be North Africa, where it has been consumed since prehistoric times and is still made into a traditional flatbread today. Millet has also been eaten in Asia and India since ancient times. Millet is even mentioned in the Bible as an ingredient for unleavened bread.

What are the health benefits of Millet?
Cooling in nature, millet is used by traditional Chinese medicine to stop vomiting, relieve diarrhea, promote urination, soothe morning sickness, and tone the stomach and intestines.

Millet is a good source of some very important nutrients, including manganese, phosphorus, and magnesium. Numerous studies have found that with their rich contents of magnesium and fiber, whole grains, such as millet, can significantly lower risk of cardiovascular disease, obesity, insulin resistance, and type 2 diabetes.

One type of phytonutrient that is particularly abundant in whole grains, including millet, are plant lignans, which are converted into a form of mammalian lignans that may help protect against breast and other hormone-dependent cancers, as well as heart disease.

Because millet does not contain gluten, it is a good grain alternative for gluten-sensitive people.

Where can I find Millet?
Millet can be found in most grocery stores.

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This entry was posted in Foods, Natural Health Dictionary.