Few years back I had a bit of confusion between jowar and bajra, as both are used to make rotis at my home. Anyhow, my mom cleared the turmoil. I can’t guarantee you of a mouth watering feast, but health benefits of jowar (sorghum) can be assured.
Best thing about sorghum is that you’ll not be hungry for long time. New research carried out concludes that jowar is a gluten-free cereal grain.
People with celiac disease or gluten sensitive may experience digestive problems, joint pains and abdominal pain when they consume gluten protein, which is housed in common grains like wheat and barley.
Experts say the only way to avoid this intolerance is to have gluten-free grains like sorghum.
Also read: Benefits of Bajra
Let me clear this to you, sorghum is a broad name for 30 different species, of which only one is harvested for human consumption and other are used for animals. Below listed are uses of jowar for health
12 Health Benefits of Jowar
Nutritionist and author Carol Fenster, says that sorghum has numerous health benefits over other ancient grains. After research she found that sorghum has 16 grams of protein, while brown rice flour has 12 grams and white rice flour has 8 grams. It’s also packed with 12 grams of fiber concludes Fenster. (1)
1. Reduces Cholesterol
A research carried out in 2005 states that sorghum is packed with phytochemicals, which can effectively reduce bad cholesterol in your body. The research was carried out on hamster by supplying extracts of sorghum for 4 weeks, which significantly reduced plasma non-HDL cholesterol level. (2)
There are different ways you can have sorghum, like in salads, sorghum bowls or sweet syrup. You can find a bunch of sorghum recipes here and here.
2. Inhibits Cancer Growth
3-Deoxyanthoxyanins, a chemical compound present in sorghum can be used to reduce gastrointestinal cancer. Crude black sorghum has high levels of 3 DXA compared to white or red sorghum extracts. Anyhow, all sorghum extracts have antiproliferative activity against cancer cells. (3)
3. Solves Digestive Issues
Like mentioned above, Carol Fenster in her book quoted that sorghum has high levels of fiber content. Excess fiber in your diet can improve your digestive tract and prevent issues like cramping, bloating, constipation, gas and stomach ache. (4)
4. Sorghum Flour Gluten Free
Celiac disease is a condition where the patient experience inflammation, digestive problems and joint pains when they consume gluten rich grains or food. Sorghum or jowar is gluten free grain and studies prove that celiac patients when treated with sorghum showed no significant toxicity. (5)
5. Jowar for Diabetes
Diabetes kills people more than AIDS and breast cancer combined. About 380 million people in the world are affected by this dangerous disease. Food you eat is converted to sugar or glucose, pancreas produce insulin that normalizes blood sugar level. In a diabetic patient immune system attacks these insulin producing cells, which can damage eyes, kidneys and heart. (source)
Antioxidants and phenolic content in sorghum bran can regulate glucose and insulin level in the body. Having sorghum or jowar roti will help you to maintain glucose level and restrain health complications associated with this disease.
6. Sorghum to Treat Melanoma
It’s a type of skin cancer developed in melanocytes, a pigment responsible for your skin’s color. You’ll see black irregularly bordered brown spots on your skin. Anyhow, consult dermatologist for diagnosis. If not treated, can spread to other part of the body and lead to death.
A study carried out in 2001 concludes that phenolic fractions in sorghum and other flavonoids from wine can decrease melanoma cell growth. (6)
Recommended: What causes freckles?
Compared to rice and wheat, sorghum or jowar has high levels of calcium, iron, protein and fiber. Copper residing in this grain aids to absorb iron and decrease anemia. Enough iron and copper increases red blood cells and improves blood circulation, which in turn stimulates cell growth, hair growth and enhances overall functioning of the body.
Niacin, also known as vitamin B6 transforms food compounds into energy. Sorghum contains about 28% of daily recommended niacin to your body.
Your body needs many anti-cancer and free radical thwarting elements that are packed in jowar. Antioxidants residing in this natural ingredient can restrain free radicals from damaging your cell membrane.
Study shows that ingredients in sorghum can reduce gastrointestinal cancer.
9. Healthy Heart
As mentioned above, jowar is packed with abundant fiber, which helps to reduce LDL cholesterol and boosts healthy heart.
However, the study also states that including fiber in diet can make small contribution to lower cholesterol.
10. Strengthen Your Bones
Jowar is housed with rich source of magnesium that helps to increase calcium absorption and promote bone health.
Health experts say that magnesium and calcium both are essential for quick redevelopment of bone-tissues. It also prevents arthritis, osteoporosis and promote healing of damaged bones. (Source)
11. Boosts Your Energy Levels
Filled with exceptional nutrients, it’s clear that sorghum can maintain energy levels on your body. Niacin and vitamin B3 helps to convert food into energy booster.
12. Jowar for Weight Loss
Rich fiber content in this grain is renowned to improve bowel movement, prevent bloating, gastric problem and cramps.
Improved digestion will help to reduce weight and avoid fat accumulation.
Sorghum or jowar flour is used to make rotis in India.
This flat bread is packed with 90 minutes of weightlifting (that many calories). A 100g of jowar consists of 10g of proteins and 75g of carbohydrates.
- 1 cup of jowar flour (sorghum flour)
- Hot water – ¾ cup
- 14/2 cup of extra jowar flour for dusting
- Mix jowar flour with hot water to make round shaped smooth dough.
- Pat and flatten using palm and fingers, just like you make wheat rotis.
- Now, sprinkle some jowar flour on work station.
- Pat thin as possible using your hands.
- Now, put the flattened roti on hot pan.
- Spread water on the roti using wet hand.
- After water evaporates, flip the side.
- Make sure it gets cooked from both side well.
Enjoy this hot and delicious jowar roti with spicy curry. (Source)
- Jowar contains tannins that are known to prevent absorbing of proteins, vitamins and minerals in this grain. So, consume only yellow or white jowar that have low tannins quantity.
- Protein is essential for healthy functioning of your health, but jowar contains it in the form of prolamine, which is indigestible.
- Even after knowing its nutritional ability, it’s best to have sorghum in small quantities.
Sorghum or jowar health benefits are enormous and exceptional. Apart from this, sorghum is a drought resistant crop, with limited water supple you can expect good yield.