As a mother, the biggest struggle is to prepare a healthy meal for our kids. I often feel like it is actually easier to deal with all house chores rather than planning a weekly meal for my kids for the week. Certainly this is not my struggle alone and there is nothing we want more as mothers than for our kids to live a healthy life and eat nutritious meals. Ragi is an important cereal rich in nutrition and the benefits of ragi especially to kids is manifold.
The following are 7 Benefits of Ragi for kids
Rich in calcium hence good for children bones
There is no kid cereal whose calcium content is close to ragi nutrition. Along with vitamin D, calcium helps to strengthen bones and it is also a significant factor when it comes to bone development in kids and preventing osteoporosis. Ragi reduces the risk of bone fractures and helps to keep bone problems at bay. Therefore, you should consider replace the calcium pills with ragi kanji or porridge and include it in your growing kid’s diet so that they can reap this benefit.
(How to prepare ragi kanji? Boil a glass of water, add one spoon of ragi flour into the boiling water then add salt and allow it to cool. Serve it to your kid when warm with butter milk and a pinch of salt. This not only cools the body but also strengthens bones among other benefits)
High in fibre content
Compared to white rice, ragi contains a very high amount of dietary fibre which aids in digestion and prevents over eating by making you feel fuller for a longer time. Amino acids; methionine and lecithin decrease cholesterol level in your child’s body by getting rid of excess fat around the liver. Threonine on the other hand prevents the formation of fat in the liver and reduces cholesterol in the overall body. The high fiber content in ragi manages the level of cholesterol in kids preventing obesity.
It battles anaemia
Ragi is a great source of natural iron, therefore, if your kid is suffering from low levels of haemoglobin or anaemia, you should include ragi in his or her diet as a home remedy for this condition. Vitamin C also aids in the absorption of iron and when ragi sprouts, its level of vitamin C increases leading to higher absorption of iron in the body.
It is a natural relaxant
The high amount of antioxidants and amino acids in ragi relaxes the body and helps to prevents ailments such as depression headaches, insomnia and anxiety in kids. Ragi contains an amino acid known as Tryptophan which highly contributes to its relaxing effects.
It is an excellent baby food
In India where ragi is consumed widely, babies from the age of one month are fed with ragi kanji as the mothers believe that it helps in digestion. Its high calcium and fiber content is useful for normal bone development of the baby as well. Specially processed ragi powder for infants is available in stores all over the world and mother can use it when weaning so that kids can reap from the high amount of nutrition in ragi.
Ragi boosts lactating
Lactating mothers as well as the young kid can benefit from the wide range of nutrition in ragi especially when it is green as it enhances the production of milk. It also fills the milk with essential nutrients including calcium, iron and amino acids required by both the kid and the mother.
Ragi is even prescribed by paediatricians to lactating mothers who want to increase their quantity and quality of breast milk for the health of the baby.
Reduces the risk of diabetes in kids
There are various benefits of ragi flour. Consumption of ragi helps to reduce the risk of diabetes which is attributed to its high content of fiber and polyphenol. Ragi based meals reduces the risk of diabetes because it contains the highest amount of fiber compared to all other kids cereals and they have a lower glycaemic response; ability to increase the level of blood sugar. Including ragi in your kid’s meals to help reduce the risk to diabetes is very essential as the cases of children and diabetes is on the rise all over the world.
From the above outlined benefits of ragi to kids, it is certainly a healthy food that you should consider in most of your kids meals, and to help them maintain a healthy life. Do share your views in comments section below.