By Pramod Kumar Jha
New Delhi, Oct 4 (IANS) Kodo is more beneficial for health than polished rice sold in the market. Kodo is a type of coarse grain and coarse cereals are rich in micronutrients as well as fibre so it is necessary to include coarse grains in your food intake for boosting fitness.
Renowned cooking expert Sanjeev Kapoor, who is always vocal for local food, says coarse grains like kodo, ragi, jowar are more beneficial for health than polished grains so the menu at five-star hotels also includes millets.
Kapoor, who is also the Onboard Chef at Tata Sampann, told IANS that local food is not only beneficial for health but is also delicious so the menu of five-star hotels includes area-specific local foods which are in demand. He said,”We launched a khichdi with Tata Sampann in which we included a lot of millets and spices along with lentil rice and there is a lot of demand for it.”
Kapoor, who considers homemade food important, said it would be a better prospect if pizzas, burgers and other continental foods were prepared at home.
People’s increasing interest in foods containing coarse grains is undoubtedly beneficial for health as scientists have found they contain lot of rich micronutrients.
However, scientists from the National Institute of Nutrition (NIN) under the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) say that a limited amount of coarse grains should be included in the diet.
Dr Subba Rao M. Gavaravarapu, scientist at NIN, Hyderabad and Chief of Nutrition Information and Communication division, said at present, the market offers only coarse grains except all other grains which is not good because maintaining diversity in food is important.
“NIN says that a person must have food which provides 2,000 calories a day, which includes nearly 270 grams of grains in it. It is good to take 40 to 50 per cent or 120 to 130 gram coarse grains. The rest of the grains we have been eating since childhood must be included in the diet,” Dr Subba Rao added.
Micronutrients and fibre, he said, are found in coarse grains so it is beneficial to include them in food for daily intake but eating only coarse grains is not recommended.
September was celebrated as the ‘Nutrition Month’. A special programme “Local Diet With Proper Nutrition” highlighted the importance of local food. Food experts described the consumption of seasonal crops grown in different parts of the country as more beneficial. In this event organised by NIN and Tata Sampann, Director of the National Institute of Nutrition Dr R. Hemlata said there is need to talk openly about the local food items.