Is Dosa healthy?
Thin, crisp and delicious dosa dipped in chutney is one of the most frequently chosen food option by most Indians. Traditionally, dosa is made from urad dal and rice. It is a rich source of carbohydrates and is also rich in fat.
Dosa is a fermented food which is easy to digest. Fermentation of foods increases the bioavailability of nutrients which helps the body to assimilate more nutrition. The microorganisms break down the complex protein, carbohydrates and fat efficiently thereby helping to assimilate more nutrients from the food. The bioavailability of proteins and Vitamin B content also increases.
Fermented foods help in reviving the microflora of the gut . Also the lactic acid bacteria produced during fermentation, helps in maintaining the pH of the gut and thereby maintaining a good gut health.
The nourishment of dosa largely depends on the quality and the quantity of the fat used to make it. Dosa is a versatile recipe and can be made with oil, ghee or butter. Preferably, one should use unsaturated fat over saturated fat to ensure the health component. However, all kinds of fats are a combination of both saturated and unsaturated fat.
Ghee and butter in moderate quantities can be used to make dosa. If you want to use oil, use olive oil, canola oil or peanut oil which are rich sources of MUFA which decreases the risk of heart disease as they lower the low density lipoprotein cholesterol levels (Bad cholesterol) in the body. Also oils like flaxseed oil or soybean oil can be used which are good sources of Omega 3 fatty acids.
Dosa provides a perfect cereal pulse combination which makes it a complete protein. For people on gluten free diets, dosas and idlis can be a good option. Note that DOSA is a medium glycemic index food as it provides complete protein or amino acid profile, it is good option for Vegetarians.
Is Dosa suitable for Diabetics?
Dosa is a moderate Glycemic Index recipe. Since, dosa has a high amount of rice which is rich in simple carbohydrates and it is fermented that is - it is pre digested, it does not prove to be a healthy option for diabetics.
However, you can try other HEALTHY DOSA variations good for Diabetics. If using rice, use good quality unpolished rice. You can replace the rice with oats or ragi which will increase the fiber content and make recipes like Healthy Oats Dosa and Nachni Dosa. You can also add various other pulses like mung dal or soya to it and make recipes like Quick Mini Soya Dosas which will enhance the protein content and lower the glycemic index of the recipe. You can also add the crunch of various vegetables to it to which will further enhance its nutrient content.
So, instead of going out and having the road side dosa which is made from oil that is re-fried a number of times, make a healthy and easy dosa at home. The road side vendors for sure are not taking care about the quality of fat that is going in your body .
Below are some very healthy Dosa recipes in addition to the basic Dosa recipe.