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Bajra (pearl millet) And Its Benefits
By Medicover Hospitals / 11 Mar 2021

Home | blog | Bajra (pearl millet) And Its Benefits
  • Bajra is a traditional Hindi name for the cultivation of Pennisetum glaucum, also known as pearl millet. Also known as dukn, cumbu, gero, sanio, kambu, babala, or bulrush millet in India it is a very commonly cultivated grain but is a staple food in many developing countries. The crop is easy to grow and has a variety of nutrients that are beneficial to the human body. It is rich in essential nutrients such as protein, fiber, phosphorus, magnesium, and iron.
  • Article Context:

    1. Overview
    2. Bajra Nutrition Facts
    3. Bajra Health Benefits
    4. Bajra For Weight Loss
    5. Side Effects
    6. FAQ's


  • Known as Bajra in Hindi and Bengali, Sajjalu in Telugu, Kambu in Tamil and Malayalam, Sajje in Kannada, Bajri in Gujarati - Pearl Millet goes by the scientific name Cenchrus americanus and is a millet widely cultivated in India and West Africa. It is also popularly known as African millet or barbed millet in various parts of the world. According to archaeobotanical researchers, the cultivation of Bajra dates back to 2000 BC. C. and was first cultivated in the Hallur district of Karnataka.
  • Today, Rajasthan is the main producer of Bajra, as this unique crop that is usually grown during summers can withstand severe weather, drought, low soil fertility, and can produce a good harvest even in low salinity land and higher pH. Although Bajra has been a staple food for thousands of years, it became very popular in recent years due to its high nutritional value.
  • Bajra Nutrition Facts:

  • Bajra pearl millet is just one of many types of millet. Some other popular varieties of millet are fonio, finger millet (ragi), Job's tears, foxtail, and kodo millet. Most millets have impressive nutritional profiles, including bajra.
  • Here is the average nutritional profile of 1 cup (170 grams) of cooked millet:
  • Calories 201
    Protein 6 grams
    Fat 1.7 grams
    Carbs 40 grams
    Fiber 2 grams
    Sodium 286 mg
    Folate 8% of the Daily Value (DV)
    Iron 6% of the DV
    Magnesium 18% of the DV
    Thiamine 15% of the DV
    Niacin 14% of the DV
    Phosphorus 14% of the DV
    Zinc 14% of the DV
    Riboflavin 11% of the DV
    Vitamin B6 11% of the DV

    Bajra Health Benefits:

    Control Diabetes:

  • If you have diabetes, the only way to live a healthy life is to know the ways to control and manage it. Bajra is rich in magnesium and it helps control glucose receptors in our body and reduces insulin resistance.
  • Keeps The Heart Healthy:

  • Like all other grains, bajra is good for the heart because it has good amounts of omega-3 fats, magnesium, potassium, fiber, and plant lignans. Omega-3 oils help lower blood pressure, triglycerides, and also regulate heart rate and artery health. Magnesium helps lower blood pressure which protects against a heart attack or stroke. Potassium helps lower BP because it is a good vasodilator. Fiber reduces bad cholesterol and thus protects the heart.
  • Safe For People Intolerant To Gluten:

  • Bajra is an ideal food for gluten intolerant people because it is gluten-free. Gluten intolerance is called celiac disease. Bajra roti is healthier than the majority of other roti varieties.
  • Weight Control:

  • Consisting of complex carbohydrates, it is slowly absorbed into our digestive tract, leading to increased satiety while ensuring a continuous flow of energy. This helps avoid overeating and bingeing between meals.
  • Packed With Omega-3 Fats:

  • Bajra is a better source of healthy omega-3 fats compared to other cereals. Omega-3 oils have been associated with lowering blood pressure, triglycerides, slowing the development of plaque in the arteries, maintaining a regular heart rate, and are known to be cardioprotective.
  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome:

  • PCOS is a common problem that affects women of all age groups, from teenage girls to those who are in menopause. This hormonal disorder can not only wreak havoc on your health, but it also interferes with your mood, causing severe fatigue, leading to unwanted hair growth. In addition to medication, losing weight, strict dietary control helps to overcome this condition and Bajra is one of those food sources that can be of great help. Loaded with iron and fiber, Pearl Millet reduces visceral fat, the type of fat found around the abdominal region, thus regulating the menstrual cycle and preventing other lifestyle disorders.
  • Improves Digestion:

  • A healthy intestine is an indicator of general health and Bajra helps to achieve good digestion and prevent constipation. Being a gluten-free cereal, it is ideal for those who suffer from celiac disease. If you are struggling with constipation, eat low regularly, as the insoluble fiber, it contains adds bulk to your stool and regulates bowel movements.
  • Natural Detoxifier:

  • Pearl millet is a mixture of amazing components and antioxidants including phenols, tannins, and phytic acid that can prevent strokes, cardiovascular problems, and various types of cancer. The catechins, quercetin in Bajra cleanse the liver, kidneys, and detoxify the body from within as well as promoting beautiful skin.
  • Increases lung Power:

  • Particularly for those who suffer from asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease or COPD, Bajra is ideal winter food. The anti-inflammatory properties of pearl millet and the presence of omega-3 oils reduce swelling, clean the mucosa and help you breathe properly.
  • Fight Heartburn:

  • Bajra falls into the category of alkaline foods, which means that it is an ideal food choice to combat acidity. The accumulation of gases can lead to other complications, such as severe discomfort in the chest, a burning sensation in the stomach, and the esophagus. Heartburn can be treated by following strict diet rules, such as eating soft foods, eating on time. Bajra mixed with vegetables greatly reduces acidity.
  • Strengthens Bones:

  • If you are over 30 and already experiencing joint pains, put Bajra on your diet list. This phosphorous-rich millet along with calcium strengthens bones, prevents joint pain, and also prevents the risk of chronic diseases such as osteoporosis.
  • Improve Eyesight:

  • Night blindness is a chronic disease and in few cases, it can be hereditary. Poor eyesight in children and adults can cause serious complications and Bajra, loaded with vitamin A and zinc, prevents night blindness, provides better vision, and reduces other vision-related problems such as macular degeneration or presbyopia.
  • Overcome Fatigue:

  • Do you suddenly feel tired and wonder what could be wrong? Sudden fatigue is often a symbol of poor metabolism, and the body needs to feed itself in the form of food to get that instant energy. Bajra is rich in vitamin B1 and helps in better absorption of nutrients in the body by converting it to adenosine triphosphate or ATP.
  • Benefits of Bajra for hair:

  • Bajra can help with hair loss of the most common hair problem.
  • 1. Prevent Hair Loss:

  • Bajra flour is rich in B and folic acid vitamins and can enhance the quality of hair, preventing hair loss.
  • 2. Strengthens Hair Follicles:

  • Protein strengthens hair follicles, one of the most significant benefits of bajra for hair. According to the magazine 'Dermatology Practical and Conceptual', protein malnutrition can cause hair loss.
  • 3. Prevents Hair Loss With Patterns:

  • The Journal of Korean Medical Science published a study indicating that iron deficiency plays a role in patterned hair loss. Bajra provides a good amount of iron and that will ultimately help to slow or stop patterned hair loss. It provides 11% of the recommended daily intake of iron. The presence of potassium in bajra flour also helps prevent hair loss. An Oxford Biolabs study found a link between hair loss and a decreased function of potassium channels within hair follicles.
  • 4. Prevents Hair Breakage:

  • While too much vitamin A can be dangerous, enough is needed to allow the scalp to produce sebum. The sebum helps to strengthen the hair and prevents breakage. Research published in the journal 'Biochimica et Biophysica Acta' confirms this.
  • Bajra For Weight Loss:

  • Also known as pearl millet, Bajra is an energy-packed grain and can also be called a superfood. Loaded with insoluble fiber that helps you lose weight, lower cholesterol, and lower blood sugar levels. If you are trying to lose weight, adding low-calorie density whole foods to your diet can be beneficial.
  • The caloric density of food measures its caloric content in relation to its weight (in grams) or volume (in ml).
  • For example, a food that has 100 calories per 100-gram (3.5-ounce) serving would have a caloric density of 1.
  • A food that has 400 calories per 100-gram serving would have a caloric density of 4.
  • Foods with a low-calorie density help you feel full but with fewer calories. Foods with a caloric density greater than 2.3 are generally considered high.
  • Bajra has a caloric density of 1.2. Therefore, foods like bajra with a low-calorie density can help you lose weight.
  • As a bonus, it is rich in essential vitamins, especially vitamin B6, potassium, and magnesium, making the grain good for the heart.
  • It is a gluten-free grain and superfood, which helps you lose weight. It is loaded with insoluble fiber that helps burn extra fat.
  • Side Effects:

  • Although bajra or pearl millet is one of the most consumed foods in our country, it has a large number of side effects. If you are eager to add this millet to your daily diet plan, there are a few things to keep in mind. Pearl millet is not recommended for those with thyroid gland dysfunction, as it can further compromise the functioning of this butterfly-shaped gland and lead to various metabolic disorders. The oxalates in Bajra, if not cooked properly, can result in kidney stones and the phytic acid can interfere with the absorption of food in the intestine. Therefore, if you have any of these health problems, talk to your doctor or nutritionist before consuming pearl millet.
  • Frequently Asked Questions:

    • High protein content
    • High fiber content
    • Complete protein for vegetarians
    • Without gluten
    • Good for diabetics
    • Good for the heart
    • Reduce the cholesterol

    Bajra or Pearl Millet top the warming chart, simply because it's packed with starch that is converted to energy, increases blood circulation, and thus increases body temperature.

    Bajra is alkaline in nature and fights acidity.

    Millets should be best eaten during the second and third trimesters, which is best during pregnancy. They are enriched with fiber, antioxidants, iron, zinc, magnesium, copper, and vitamin B.

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