Read full article By Vivek Phadnis @Deccan Herald Photo Credit: Thamizhpparithi Maari
It can be used to make yummy dishes but it is also a superfood as we are just about to find out.
According to the National Center of Biotechnology Information (USA): “Foxtail millet is a member
of the Paniceae tribe and came from green millet domestication in northern China about for 8000
years ago,” a published paper says.
“Foxtail millet is extensively cultivated in the developing countries in semiarid and arid regions of
Africa, Americas, Asia because of its health benefits (a particular balance of nutrients, e.g., starch,
protein, dietary fibres, fat, vitamins, and low-glycemic and hypolipidemic effects), good yield with
minimal agricultural inputs, and adaptation to different biotic and abiotic stresses such as salinity,
drought, and fungal diseases,” it adds.
It also contains calcium, iron, crude protein, crude fibre, crude fat, among others. Clearly, it can be
classified as a superfood.
DH lists some health benefits of foxtail millet:
A paper published in the NCBI says: “Mature foxtail seeds mainly consist of proline-rich proteins
(prolamin) comprising about 60 per cent of the total protein, with less content of disulfide crosslinked proteins than with other cereal and millets. Owing to its low cost and excellent functional
properties of flour and protein concentrate, foxtail millet can be considered as good candidate for
replacing animal protein foods.
“Furthermore, there is huge potential for successfully developing low-cost, protein-rich functional
food products helpful in the prevention and management of lifestyle-related chronic diseases,” it
Another research paper says: “The intake of 50 g of foxtail millet per day significantly improved
the glycemic control, especially the postprandial glucose, in free-living subjects with impaired
glucose tolerance. The glucose-lowering effect of foxtail millet might be a result of the interaction
of increased leptin concentrations, decreased insulin resistance and reduced inflammation. It is
suggested that modern people should appropriately increase and insist on the intake of whole
May help bone health:
Foxtail millet has high amounts of calcium. This means that it could very well help for bone health
and could even fight osteoporosis. Even the chance of fractures could probably be reduced.
Besides, it is also known to be rich in Vitamin B12 that aids heart health, it has also proven to be
beneficial for weight loss, improving immunity, proper functioning of the nervous system among
How to consume:
In North Karnataka, there is a sweet dish called hurakki holige. This can be made from foxtail
Foxtail millet can be cooked like rice and eaten with curd.
Foxtail upma can me made like regular upma and consumed.
The internet is teeming with recipes related to foxtail millet.