Is Sago, Sabudana healthy?
Sago or Sabudana is a grain which is made from the tapioca root. It looks white pearls which are available in different sizes like small, medium and large. It’s a delight to taste buds and there are very few people who don’t like the taste of sabudana.
It’s abundantly used in Indian cooking especially as a fasting food. Sabudana Khichdi, Sabudana Vada, Sabudana Khichdi to Thalipeeth and Kheer – it is used to make a whole lot of varieties. Sometimes it is even used to make breads. Let’s peep into the nutrition facts of this grain.
Effect of Sago on Weight : As learnt from the above nutrition analysis, sago is a super energy and carb loaded grain. It will fill you instantly and make you feel energetic in minutes. ½ cup of sago gives176 calories and 43.7 g of carbs. Eating such high carbs at any meal, be it snack or lunch or dinner, is not considered to be healthy. Excess calories and carbs might lead to weight gain easily.
However during fasting days, this energy dense food is opted by many. It is probably because it gives you a feeling of satiety. Also according to Ayurveda it is said to balance body heat during fasting days.
Further, you may think that the fat count is low, and so it might be healthy. But a word of caution! It’s low in fiber and protein both. So, overall it will not boost your metabolism or help you get rid of excess fat. Instead it will lead to weight gain only and not weight loss.
Minerals in Sago : Sago has small amounts of minerals like calcium, iron, phosphorus and potassium. These nutrients will carry out their function of helping in strengthening bones or contributing towards increasing hemoglobin levels. But that effect might be minimal due their low count. Find out other calcium rich, iron rich, phosphorus rich and potassium rich foods.
Sago and Diabetes : Sabudana is full of carbs – by now you know this. And too many carbs isn’t a very healthy choice for diabetics, as it might raise the blood sugar levels instantly. Opt for other healthy grains like oats, quinoa, bajra, jowar etc. which are loaded with fiber and also provide other key nutrients to keep your blood sugar levels under check.
Sago - a gluten free food : Yes, sago doesn’t have any gluten and so it’s completely gluten-free! Those who suffer from gluten intolerance (have allergy to gluten found in wheat and its products) can certainly include sago in their diet.
Key Take Away : Sago is full of energy and carbs without too many nutrients to offer. So it is not advisable for following conditions…
1. Weight Loss
2. Low Carb Diet
4. Heart Disease with Obesity
5. Skin Problems
7. Athlete Diet
It can definitely be included in your diet if you are intending to gain weight. But in reality, you would do so without gaining any nutrients. So it would best to turn to other foods which would help you gain weight.
However to improve the nutrition count of sago, people often combine it with other ingredients like milk to make porridge.
Nutritive Information for Sago (Sabudana) :
½ Cup of sago is about 75 grams
RDA stands for Recommended Daily Allowance.
Energy – 176 calories
Protein – 0.1 g
Carbohydrate – 43.7 g
Fat – 0.1 g
Fiber – 0.5 g
Read More about Sago