5 Best Millet for Weight Loss

Last updated on May 17th, 2024

Millets are grains with a long history and have been staples in many cultures. In recent times, they are making a comeback as nutrient-dense superfoods. These tiny grains are low on calorie count and have decent fiber content. This makes them a go-to choice for weight loss. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the nutritional value of millets, highlight the best varieties for shedding those extra pounds, and share delicious and healthy millet recipes.

Nutritional Value of Millet

Millets are a nutrient-laden food, making them highly beneficial for consumption. According to the latest data from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the following is the nutritional profile of raw millet per 100 grams:

Nutrients per 100 grams Amount
Calories 378 kcal
Protein 11 g
Fat 4.2 g
Carbs 72.8 g
Fiber 8.5 g
Calcium 8 mg
Iron 3 g
Magnesium 114 mg
Phosphorous 285 mg
Potassium 195 mg
Sodium 5 mg
Zinc 1.6 mg
Manganese 1.68 mg
Niacin 4.7 mg

Read More: Best Indian Diet Plan Chart for Weight Loss

Is Millet Good for Weight Loss?

Now it’s time to answer the question: Is millet good for weight loss? The answer is a big yes! Millets are definitely good for weight loss for multiple reasons. Firstly, they are highly nutritious yet low in calories and have a low glycemic profile. Secondly, millets are a rich source of dietary fiber, which helps you cut your cravings.

Moreover, a cumulative result of 19 studies published by the National Institute of Health(NIH) showed consumption of millet-based diets resulted in a decline in overweight and obesity levels in individuals par of the studies. Finally, millets have an adequate presence of essential nutrients like potassium, magnesium, manganese, iron, etc.

These nutrients boost the body’s energy metabolism, especially when you are losing weight and are low on calories. The effectiveness of millet is such many dieticians also prescribe dedicated millet diet plan for weight loss.

Read More: Are Dates Good for People With Diabetes?

Best Millet for Weight Loss

Best Millet for Weight Loss

The majority of the millet is good for you therefore, it becomes very difficult to choose the single best millet for weight loss. If you choose one, you lose the benefits of the other by not choosing them. So, for your convenience, we have chosen the top millets that you should consume for weight loss. Following is the list:

Bajra (Pearl Millet)

One of the most popular millets in India, bajra is a great choice for weight loss. It is high in fiber and protein, promoting feelings of fullness and preventing overeating. According to the WebMD website, a cup of bajra contains around 2.26 g of fiber. Bajra is also rich in antioxidants and has a low glycemic index(GI). This kind of nutritional profile also makes it suited for diabetics trying to manage their sugar levels.

Ragi (Finger Millet)

Ragi, or finger millet, is a superfood that has been a part of traditional Indian diets for centuries. It is a decent presence of calcium, iron, and dietary fiber. All these can greatly help in your weight loss. This high fiber in ragi helps in digestion and keeps you satiated for longer.

Jowar (Sorghum)

Jowar, or sorghum, is a gluten-free millet commonly used in Indian cuisine. It is rich in antioxidants and has a low GI, which can help maintain a calorie deficit and prevent cravings. Jowar also has a good amount of protein and dietary fiber. Interestingly, both of them are essential for weight management. According to the Nestle website, jowar has 9.9 g of protein and 10.2 g of fiber per 100 grams.

Kodo Millet

Kodo millet, also known as kodra or varagu, is a highly nutritious millet that is popular in southern parts of India. Like the above millets, it is low on calorie count yet highly fibrous, making it a great pick for those looking to shed a few extra pounds. According to the APEDA Govt. of India website, Kodo millet has 8.03 g of protein and 8.5 g of fiber per 100 g. Kodo millet is also a good vegetarian source of nutrients like protein, iron and magnesium.

Sama (Barnyard Millet)

Sama, or barnyard millet, is a versatile grain that has been a part of traditional Indian diets for centuries. According to the Times of India, sama millet is rich in fiber and protein. Sama is also a good source of essential vitamins & minerals. Thus making it a nutritious add-on to any weight loss diet.

Incorporating these millets into your regular diet, along with traditional Indian recipes and regular workouts, can help you achieve your weight loss goals.

Read More: Is Carrot Good For Diabetes?

Millet Benefits for Weight Loss

Millet Benefits for Weight Loss

Millets offer several benefits that can aid in weight loss efforts. Here’s a detailed explanation of how these ancient grains can contribute to a successful weight management journey:

High fiber content

Millets are an excellent dietary fiber source and support weight loss. Fiber gives you a feeling of fullness and satiety, leading to reduced calorie intake and decreased cravings. Additionally, fiber aids in digestion and regular bowel movements, preventing issues like constipation that can contribute to weight gain.

Low glycemic index

Most millets have a low glycemic index, meaning they release their sugars into the bloodstream gradually, preventing sudden spikes in blood sugar levels. This steady release of energy helps maintain stable blood sugar levels, preventing cravings and overeating, which are common pitfalls in weight loss efforts.

High protein content

Many varieties of millets, such as ragi (finger millet) and jowar (sorghum), are rich in protein. Protein builds and preserves lean muscle mass, boosting metabolism and supporting weight loss.

Low in calories

Millets are generally lower in calories than other grains, making them an ideal choice for those trying to create a calorie deficit necessary for weight loss. Their low-calorie density means consuming larger portions while maintaining a calorie-controlled diet.


Millets house essential nutrients like vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, including iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and B vitamins. These micronutrients support your overall health and well-being, which can aid in sustaining your tedious weight loss efforts. They provide your body with the necessary nutrients and energy to function optimally.

Improved digestion

The fiber content in millet promotes healthy digestion and regular bowel movements, preventing issues like bloating and constipation that can contribute to weight gain and discomfort.

Increased metabolism

Millets contain compounds like resistant starch and plant compounds that may help boost metabolism. This enables your body to burn more and support weight loss efforts.

Read More: The Health Benefits of Brown Rice

Millet Recipes for Weight Loss

Millet Recipes for Weight Loss

Here are some healthy and delicious millet recipes that can contribute to weight loss efforts:

Ragi Dosa

A popular South Indian cuisine made with finger millet (ragi) batter. Serve with low-calorie chutneys like coconut or tomato chutney.

Bajra Khichdi

A comforting and wholesome dish made with pearl millet (bajra), lentils, and veggies.

Jowar Roti

A healthier alternative to traditional wheat rotis, jowar (sorghum) rotis are high in fiber and protein. Pair them with low-fat curries or sabji for a balanced and filling meal.

Kodo Millet Upma

A savory and satisfying breakfast or snack made with kodo millet. Include veggies like carrots, peas, onions, and spices.

Foxtail Millet Salad

A refreshing and nutrient-dense salad made with cooked foxtail millet, fresh vegetables like cucumber, tomatoes, and onions, and a tangy lemon dressing.

Ragi Idli

Ragi idlis are a nutritious and filling breakfast option made with a steamed and fermented dish made with a combination of ragi (finger millet) and rice batter.

Bajra Cheela

A savory pancake made with pearl millet (bajra) flour, gram flour, and multiple veggies.

Read More: Is Black Coffee Good for Diabetes?


Embracing millets in your weight loss journey can be a game-changer. These ancient grains give you a wealth of health gains, from their opulent fiber and protein content to their low glycemic index and nutrient density. By incorporating varieties like bajra, ragi, jowar, and kodo millet into your diet through delicious and healthy recipes, you can feel fuller for longer, regulate blood sugar levels, and nourish your body with essential vitamins and minerals. Bid farewell to fad diets and embrace the sustainable, wholesome goodness of millets – your path to a healthier, slimmer you awaits.

Read More: Is Honey Good for Diabetes Patients?

FAQ’s (Frequently Asked Questions)

Which millet is best for roti?

Millets like jowar, bajra and ragi can easily replace roti made from wheat. It is advised that you use their mixed flour in place of the atta. The mixed millet flour will have lower calories and richer fiber content.

Can we eat millet daily for weight loss?

Yes, we can consume millet daily when doing weight loss. There are many weight loss millet diets which can incorporated as well. Millets can easily replace our regular grains like wheat and rice. You use millet as flour and use it in sabjis.

Which is better for weight loss brown rice or millets?

Between brown rice and millets, the winner is clearly millets. This is due to their lower calorie count and richer nutrient profile. Millets also have lesser carb content and absorption in the body.

Which millet is best for belly fat loss?

When compared to all millets, the best weight loss millet is bajra due to its packed nutritional profile and wide usage. Bajra or pearl millet can also be used as flour to replace wheat.

Last Updated on by Dr. Damanjit Duggal 


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