Why You Need To Choose Indigenous Whole Grains Over Foreign Imports

Why You Need To Choose Indigenous Whole Grains Over Foreign Imports

According to food activists, indigenous crops like millets require less water, less power and are rich in micronutrients. Activists demand that such crops should be encouraged by the State Governments of both Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.


Food activists are upset that instead of indigenous home grains, crops from South American shores like quinoa are being experimentally grown.


P V Satheesh, Director of Deccan Development Society, said, “Why is money being wasted on a foreign grain? Millets like Bajra, Korra, Sama and Variga require very little water, less power and can be easily grown on dry soil.”


Research has shown that millets are rich in micronutrients and minerals and low on fat. Food activist state that Indian millets have all nutrients present in Quinoa.


Common properties found in millets and quinoa:


1) Rich in magnesium.


2) High antioxidant content. 


3) Improve digestive health.


4) Low glycemic index. 


5) Anti-inflammatory, antiviral, anti-cancer and anti-depressant properties.


6) Reduce blood sugar and cholesterol levels. Also help in weight loss.


7) High protein content.


8) Gluten-free and very useful for people with wheat intolerance.


Differences between quinoa and millets:


1) Korra (Foxtail millet) provides 30 percent more energy than quinoa.


2) Millets have more fiber than quinoa.


Nutritionists And Activists Concur


Dr P Janaki Srinath, Senior Consultant Nutritionist, explained, “Quinoa has been marketed across the world as it’s low on fat and high in proteins. It has essential amino acids with a high amount of antioxidants. But these properties are also present in Indian millets as well. When we can get the same micronutrients and the same benefits from millets, what is the need to bring in quinoa into our diets?”


Research shows that millets protect against stroke, diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular diseases and premature death.


With so many benefits available, activists are angry that Indian consumers are again being misled to believe in a wonder food. Earlier it was oats, then came soya and now, it’s quinoa. Back in 1965, the food plate of Indians consisted of 65 percent millets and less wheat or rice. But over the years, the equation has changed drastically.

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