Is Idli healthy?
Soft, Steamed, Delicious and puffy idli drowned in a bowl of ever - so soothing sambhar has become nation’s one of the most loved recipes. It is also a very popular street food but does not hold an image of unhealthy and calorie laden food.
Since Idli is steamed and not fried in oil like most oily snacks, the calorie intake is relatively low. There is no additional fat added which maintains the nourishment. This makes Idli a better option over fried samosas and pakoras.
Idli is light and fills you with energy. It 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 bioavailability of proteins and Vitamin B contents also increases. The microorganisms break down the complex protein, carbohydrates and fat efficiently thereby helping to assimilate more nutrients from the food.
In an era, where antibiotics are prescribed so frequently and our gut flora is so frequently damaged , fermented foods replenish the micro flora of the digestive tract and also improve the absorption of nutrients. Apart from fermentation, the lactic acid bacteria alters the pH balance of the gut thus helping in a long term gut health. Keep in mind your stomach has an incredible part in deciding your well being!
Idli is a perfect combination of urad dal and rice which make it a complete protein. It additionally is without gluten, so if you need to go gluten free, Idli would be the best option for you. It is also a low calorie recipe, thus making it a good option for people on weight loss.
One Idli has only 33 Calories. Yes, it is healthy. See here for complete nutritional details of idli.
Is Idli allowed for Diabetics?
Idli is a moderate Glycemic Index (GI) recipe and since it is fermented it is pre digested by micro organisms, thus prove not a very happy food for diabetics. The only glitch is that rice forms an important component of the idli batter. Par boiled white rice is full of simple carbohydrates that may induce weight gain. But since it is steamed and also contains a considerable amount of urad dal, the carbohydrate content in 1 serving of idli may not be bad for your waistline. So idlis are not recommneded for Diabetics. Given below are idli variations which are safe for Diabetics.
Or you can modify your traditional recipe a bit and replace rice with oats or barley. You can also add in some other pulses like moong dal to further enhance the protein content. Some vegetables and spices can also be added to further lower the GI and make your idli more healthy. Oats idli, Oats Rava Idli, Barley Idli and Green Moong Dal and Vegetable Idli are safe for Diabetics.