Finger Millet (Ragi, Eleusine coracana L.): A Review of Its Nutritional Properties, Processing, and Plausible Health Benefits

Shobana, S. and Krishnaswamy, K. and Sudha, V. and et al, . (2013) Finger Millet (Ragi, Eleusine coracana L.): A Review of Its Nutritional Properties, Processing, and Plausible Health Benefits. In: Advances in Food and Nutrition Research. Elsevier Inc., pp. 1-39. ISBN 978-0-12-410540-9

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Finger millet or ragi is one of the ancient millets in India (2300 BC), and this review focuses on its antiquity, consumption, nutrient composition, processing, and health benefits. Of all the cereals and millets, finger millet has the highest amount of calcium (344 mg%) and potassium (408 mg%). It has higher dietary fiber, minerals, and sulfur containing amino acids compared to white rice, the current major staple in India. Despite finger millet's rich nutrient profile, recent studies indicate lower consumption of millets in general by urban Indians. Finger millet is processed by milling, malting, fermentation, popping, and decortication. Noodles, vermicilli, pasta, Indian sweet (halwa) mixes, papads, soups, and bakery products from finger millet are also emerging. In vitro and in vivo (animal) studies indicated the blood glucose lowering, cholesterol lowering, antiulcerative, wound healing properties, etc., of finger millet. However, appropriate intervention or randomized clinical trials are lacking on these health effects. Glycemic index (GI) studies on finger millet preparations indicate low to high values, but most of the studies were conducted with outdated methodology. Hence, appropriate GI testing of finger millet preparations and short- and long-term human intervention trials may be helpful to establish evidence-based health benefits.

Item Type: Book Section
Uncontrolled Keywords: Glycemic index; Diabetes; White rice; Obesity; Available carbohydrates
Author Affiliation: Madras Diabetes Research Foundation, WHO Collaborating Centre for Non-communicable Diseases Prevention and Control, IDF Centre of Education, Gopalapuram, Chennai, India
Subjects: Postharvest Management > Food Technology
Divisions: Maize
Depositing User: Mr Siva Shankar
Date Deposited: 21 Aug 2013 03:28
Last Modified: 21 Aug 2013 03:28
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