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Multigrain foods can help you beat diabetes, cancer and many other diseases!

Learn how you can fortify your regular roti just by mixing different grains.

Thanks to the latest craze of multigrain, everybody wants to buy them to become fit and healthier. The biggest grain of truth lies in the fact that combination of grains helps in accelerating the amino acids content of what you eat, thus, helping you dial up the nutritive value of complementary proteins. Amrita Parab, Nutritionist at Digestive Health Institute by Dr.Muffisuggests why grains should be mixed together and which of the grains work best when mixed.

But first, let us understand why whole grains are 100% better than refined grains:

Food grains chat(Source- whole grain council)

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In all aspects, whole grains supersede their refined counterpart. If we were to analyse the basic nutritional aspects then the fibre content of the whole grains gives good satiety value, slows the rise in blood sugar levels post consumption, improves the gut health. The health benefits of whole grains are attributed in part to their unique phytochemical composition. This may partly explain the use of grain consumption in the prevention of colon cancer, other digestive cancers, breast cancer, and prostate cancer, which is supported by epidemiological studies.The antioxidant content of whole grains explains the studies indicating an association between whole grain intake and lower CVD. Read here Wheat chapatis or bajra roti, oats or ragi, quinoa or brown rice? what s better for weight loss

Importance of mixing together grains and flours for optimum health: The concept of multigrain has caught the attention of diet watchers. Multigrain provides a compact dose of the essential nutrients. Mixing of cereals and grains improves the quality of protein and apes the protein quality of non-vegetarian sources. Mixing of cereal and pulses lowers the glycaemic index (the capacity of food to increase the blood sugar level after consumption). Read here how to know if your atta or wheat flour is pure

At-home method of mixing grains together: We can start by mixing any cereal and any pulse for a usual preparation.

For roti start by experimenting with different cereal combinations:

  • Jowar + whole green mung
  • Bajra + Black urad
  • Ragi + Chickpea flour
  • Wheat + Soya flour

Cereals are deficient in one of the essential amino acids (lysine). While pulses are deficient in one (methionine). So, when combined together they make a complete protein. So, our ancestors were correct when they made khichadi an important part of our diet. Idlis, dosa are a perfect example of this.

Type of flours can be mixed together:

  1. Amaranth: Also called as rajgeera, it is one of the few multi-purpose crop, which can supply grains and tasty leafy vegetables of high nutritional quality. The proteins have high digestibility (approx. 90 %) and are rich with lysine (4.9 to 6.1 g 100 g protein-1), which usually appears in grains as a limiting amino acid. It is gluten free, hence a healthy option in case of gluten intolerance, gluten sensitivity celiac sprue etc. It is a favourite cereal food group for the paediatric population. Read here health benefits of amaranth seeds or rajgira
  2. Barley: Barley is also known as jau. The highlight of this cereal lies in its beautiful fibre quality. This can be used in combination with other cereals to lower the glycaemic index. It is an excellent cereal in case of diabetes, cardiovascular disease/ dyslipidaemia, obesity etc
  3. Jowar or Bajra: These millets have been underestimated cereal have multiple reasons to be included in our daily diet. They are gluten-free and non-GMO. A great source of fiber, they are antioxidants and can be slowly digested, hence balancing the blood sugar in the body. It also helps in fight inflammation, cancer and heart diseases.

Image source: Shutterstock

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