12 Amazing Benefits of Eating Ragi During Pregnancy
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When it comes to pregnancy diet, everything best is chosen for the optimal health of the mother and the baby. Among colourful fruits and vegetables, experts also recommend pregnant women eat ragi during pregnancy. Ragi is a grain grown in many Asian and African countries. It has many health-related benefits for expectant women. It can be eaten by making rotis of ragi flour or in porridge, adai, dosa or kali. Let’s explore a multitude of benefits of eating ragi during pregnancy and different ways to prepare it to treat the taste buds.
Health Benefits of Ragi for Pregnant Women
Is ragi good to consume during pregnancy? You can find out after reading the health benefits of ragi for pregnant women.
1. High Content of Calcium
Ragi is rich in calcium, which helps in the teeth and bone development of the child. The baby’s essential source of nutrition is from the mother, so sufficient calcium content should be present in your body. Calcium helps in strengthening the teeth, bones, and nails of both you and your child.
2. Has Natural Fat Content
It is better to avoid food containing excess fat during pregnancy. It results in issues like diabetes, hypertension and heart disease. Ragi has natural fat in it, which is good for health and does not lead to excessive weight gain.
3. Rich in Fibre
4. Helps in Dealing With Insomnia
Expectant women find it hard to sleep peacefully at night. If you eat ragi, you can get a sufficient amount of sound sleep at night. The amino acid in ragi is tryptophan which helps in dealing with insomnia.
5. Does Not Contain Gluten
Some women are prone to severe allergy and adhere to a strict gluten-free diet. Ragi is gluten-free and completely safe for consumption during pregnancy. In case you are allergic, you should avoid food that can cause irritation. Foods free from gluten help in keeping the unborn baby safe.
6. Helps Aid Milk Production
The mother has to produce milk for breastfeeding after giving birth to the baby. Ragi aids the process of milk production, as it is rich in calcium, amino acids and iron. If you are planning on breastfeeding your child exclusively, you should consume ragi during pregnancy.
7. Helps in Controlling the Level of Cholesterol
Abnormal level of cholesterol in your body during pregnancy can result in hypertension and reduce the chances of normal labour. Lecithin and Methionine in ragi are efficient in regulating the level of cholesterol in your body.
8. Rich Source of Various Minerals
Ragi contains various minerals in it, like calcium, iron, etc. These minerals are essential for the development of the baby during pregnancy. You can also plan a diet chart containing ragi during the first trimester of pregnancy after consulting your nutritionist or doctor.
9. Helps in Supplying Protein to Various Parts of the Body
Protein is needed in surplus amounts during pregnancy. It also helps in the development of the foetus. Ragi is one of the most important foods for vegetarians, as it helps meet the protein requirement of the body.
10. High Amount of Iron
Ragi has plenty of iron, which is essential during pregnancy to nourish both the mother and child. It strengthens immunity and keeps the mother feeling energetic during the day.
11. Reduces the Risk of Gestational Diabetes
Gestational diabetes is a risk factor that can target pregnant women and complicate their pregnancy. To reduce the risk of gestational diabetes, ragi consumption is recommended.
12. Relieves Stress
Healthy Ragi Dosa Recipe
Ragi dosas are delicious and provide you with nutrition, so you can cook and eat them whenever you’re craving healthy South Indian food.
- 1 cup of ragi flour
- 1/2 cup sooji
- 1/3 cup of rice flour
- 1/2 cup of curd
- 1 onion (finely chopped)
- 1 teaspoon of ginger (finely chopped)
- 1 green chilli (finely chopped)
- 2 tablespoons of coriander leaves (finely chopped)
- 5-6 curry leaves
- 1 teaspoon of jeera
- 1/2 teaspoon of pepper
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 4 cups of water
- oil- as required
How to Make:
- Take the ragi flour, sooji, and rice flour in a large bowl.
- Add the rest of the ingredients (except the water) and mix well.
- Add 1-2 cups of water and slowly stir until you get a thick, lump-free batter.
- Cover and rest the batter for 15-20 minutes.
- Add the remaining water, little by little and stirring continuously, until you get a flowing consistency.
- Head a tawa and lightly grease with oil.
- Pour some the batter at the centre of the tawa and slowly spread outwards in a circular motion, until you get the desired size and thickness of the dosa.
- Drizzle some oil from the top.
- Once you get a golden brown cook on one side, flip the dosa and cook on the other side for 2-3 minutes.
- Fold and place the dosa on the plate, ready to serve with chutney or sambar.
Ragi Ladoo Recipe
Who says Ragi is boring? Let’s make it sensational on taste buds by turning plain old ragi into scrumptious ragi ladoo.
- 1 cup ragi flour
- 1/2 cup powdered jaggery or any other sweetener of your choice
- 1/4 cup ghee (clarified butter)
- 1/4 cup chopped nuts (almonds, cashews, pistachios, etc.)
- 1/4 teaspoon cardamom powder
- A pinch of salt
How to Make:
- Add 1 cup of ragi flour to a pan and roast it on medium to low flame. Make sure not to burn it.
- In a separate pan, add some ghee and nuts of your choice in a pan and roast them on low flame until golden brown, and keep them aside.
- Roast for a good 8-9 minutes until you get a rich aroma of the roasted ragi flour and it changes its colour slightly.
- Add 1/4th cup of ghee and mix everything well, and continue to roast this mixture for the next 5-7 minutes. Once it looks not raw, switch off the flame and keep it aside.
- In a pan, add 1/2 cup powdered jaggery or any other sweetener of your choice and 1/4 teaspoon cardamom powder and keep mixing to avoid lumps.
- Slowly pour the jaggery and cardamom mixture into the bowl with the ragi flour mixture. Ensure everything is mixed evenly and there are no lumps.
- Let the ragi mixture cool down a bit until it is comfortable to touch. Now, grease your palms with ghee, and by taking portions of the ragi and jaggery mixture, make small round ladoos. Repeat this process with the remaining mixture.
- Place the ragi ladoos on a large plate or a tray and let them cool completely. Once cooled, store them in an airtight container and enjoy them as a snack.
These delicious ragi ladoos can be consumed as a healthy snack during pregnancy, and they will provide you with essential nutrients and energy needed to go through the day. However, it is important to do portion control during pregnancy and a consult with your healthcare provider for any specific dietary requirements during pregnancy is a wise move. Enjoy!
1. Can Ragi Increase Fetal Weight?
Though ragi is a nutritious grain with a multitude of essential nutrients, including calcium, fibre, iron, etc., which help women during pregnancy, there is little to no evidence suggesting that it can increase fetal weight. A nutritious and balanced diet during pregnancy is important for the proper growth of a foetus. However, ragi should not be solely relied upon for the increase in foetal weight. Consulting a nutritionist or your healthcare provider for this concern is recommended as they will be able to give you personalised advice based on your pregnancy progress.
2. Is It Safe to Eat Raw Ragi During Pregnancy?
Ragi in the raw form, like other grains, is not advised to be consumed during pregnancy because of the health risk it possesses. consuming raw ragi could cause bacterial contamination and foodborne illnesses. To ensure the food safety and health of the mother and the baby, it is recommended to thoroughly wash and cook ragi before consuming it. Cooking will not only enhance its flavour, but it will get rid of harmful bacteria and improve its digestibility.
Ragi is not only beneficial to women during pregnancy; it has several health benefits after delivery as well. It aids in cell and tissue repair and is a good source of energy. Ragi and ragi flour is good for pregnancy, and integrating it into your diet chart during the first trimester of pregnancy can aid in a healthy pregnancy.