6 Ancient Grains You Must Include In Your Diet

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6 Ancient Grains You Must Include In Your Diet


Yup am all excited today coz I just heard a new buzz in fitness, hold your breath; “Ancient Grains”. Now as fancy as it may sound, they are our usual grains but not very staple in our diet. With the Gluten free diet catching on fast we need options to replace our daily grains with something more healthy filling and guilt free (in descending order!)

Ancient grains

We generally eat wheat, rice, and oats in our daily life, but ancient grains have made a comeback and how, these are the grains which are gluten free they come from seeds that have been around for millennia and as such are free of hybridization and GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) manipulation. They are as nature designed them. Hence whole in nature as opposed to our refined grains which our body cannot tolerate resulting in gluten intolerance. Let’s look at the grains which comprise the ancient family shall we,

Amaranth (Ramdana)

Amaranth ancient grain

This grain is grown in the whole of India and is available aplenty. It is rich in fiber and one cup of amaranth contains 28.1 grams of protein (who dint want that!?) it also contains more iron than other gluten-free grains. Now Ramdana absorbs a lot of water is thus the end result is very much dense and tough, like a roti made with oats flour. Hence this flour needs to be mixed with another gluten free flour (try corn) to make it palatable.

Bulgur (Dalia)

Bulgur ancient grain

A great alternative to rice or couscous. It’s made from hard red wheat and sometimes softer, white wheat. Very easily available and also popular in the kitchen of dieters. Being a complex carbohydrate, the rate at which it gets digested it slow thus releasing glucose on a slow and sustained rate. This makes it an ideal food for diabetics, people wanting to lose weight or those who have high cholesterol levels. It has high fiber content of 18.3 g per cup and 12.29g of proteins.


Quinoa ancient grain

Now who doesn’t know Quinoa by now? It has been popularized and used by almost everyone across the globe being a health fanatic or not. The Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has officially declared that the year 2013 be recognized as “The International Year of the Quinoa. Oh Yea! Quinoa is stocked with life-sustaining nutrients all across the board, including all eight essential amino acids making it a complete protein. With a cup containing 14g of proteins and 7g of fiber this isn’t such a bad deal. It may require a thorough rinse before cooking to wash off its naturally bitter coating though.

Millet (Jowar)

Millet ancient grain

Our very own humble food Jowar, farmer’s crop. Jowar ki roti/ bhakri is such a bliss when you eat it warm, just off the stove. Although oats have been widely publicized for their heart-protective properties, millet is a grain that should also be included on your list of heart-healthy choices because of its status as a good source of magnesium. It also helps with the development and repair of tissues. Basically I can go on and on when it comes to benefits of millet, just Google it and you will be awed.

Buckwheat (kuttu)

Buckwheat ancient grain

Kuttu ka atta is famous with our ever fasting ladies.The protein in buckwheat contains the eight essential amino acids. Eating 30 grams of buckwheat daily can lower blood pressure. And because buckwheat grain is digested more slowly than other carbohydrates it can leave you feeling fuller longer and improve glucose tolerance among the carbohydrate sensitive. A cup of buckwheat contains 13g of proteins. But don’t just fry them like a puri and have it! Make it into a paratha, healthy and nutritious.

Barley (Jau)

Barley ancient grain

This just goes out to the alcohol drinkers out there! Love the taste of Whisky or Beer? Well it’s the barley that’s working the flavors… Yea… No kidding. Barley which is low in calories as compared to other grains helps to reduce weight because of several kinds of essential amino acids and also because of its fiber content. Barley modulates your blood sugar levels, thus avoiding the sugar peaks and drops usually associated with the fat storage process. With 12g proteins and 17g fiber its just what fits the bill! We can incorporate this into almost anything, even water! Versalite Blessing… I just love the food that can be turned into anything!

This is my list of easily available ancient grains to introduce in your kitchen. Hope you enjoy them and any recipes with them are most welcome. Am hoping to get a dessert recipe right for you guys! Soon…

Till then, Ciao…

This is Pooja, running off to the grocery store 😛

Planning to include ancient grains in your diet?

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