Is Semolina (rava, sooji) healthy?
Semolina, commonly called as sooji or rava is the main ingredient of many dishes like Upma and Sheera. In reality this is a coarsely ground version of wheat. This semolina, often makes its appearance in other food products like pastas, bread, some baked goodies and breakfast cereals.
To understand how healthy is semolina, let’s learn about the parts of wheat in detail….
The Husk – the inedible part of wheat
The Bran – The outermost fibre rich part
The Endosperm – The Starchy part of wheat
The Germ – The embryo of the wheat seed which contains proteins, vitamins, fats and minerals.
Typically the wheat flour is made from wheat which has the bran, germ and endosperm intact and hence abounds in nutrients. Semolina is the grain that is formed after milling which is devoid of the bran and germ. Thus most of the fibre and fat is lost but is has the starch and some nutrients intact. Further grinding would yield the completely refined form of wheat – the plain flour (maida).
5 Health Benefits of Semolina.
1. Semolina is a good source of energy and can definitely boost weight gain. But since it’s devoid of fibre, it would be the best health treat only if you toss in loads of veggies with it.
2. Semolina is a fairly good source of Magnesium and phosphorus which is necessary to keep our nervous system healthy and working.
3. It also abounds in B complex vitamins, especially vitamin B3 (18.6% of RDA) which are a must to support metabolism and energy production in our body.
4. A cup of semolina furnishes our body with 14.5 gm of protein for cell and tissue maintenance.
5. It is low in sodium & fat.
Is Semolina Good for Gluten Intolerance?
The answer is No. The reason is simple… It’s made out of wheat and hence contains gluten. This grain is to be avoided by those suffering from Celiac Disease or Gluten Sensitivity.
Is Semolina for diabetes?
The glycemic index of semolina is 66 which is a medium GI food. Any food that is medium GI can raise the blood sugar, though slowly when compared to high GI foods. Hence semolina should be avoided by diabetics. If you opt for it occasionally do not consume any other source of carbs with it and ensure to accompany it with another protein rich food like paneer or fibre rich veggies. Do keep a track of your portion size and do not go overboard to keep your sugar levels under control.
Is Semolina good for Weight Loss?
When you aim to weight loss, all whole grains like whole wheat, jowar, barley, buckwheat, quinoa should be filled in your pantry. We would not recommend this partially refined semolina. Fibre is one key nutrient for weight loss and semolina is devoid of it. If you are looking for an alternative to plain flour or all-purpose flour, semolina is a healthier option. However when compared to delicacy made out of any other whole grain, it isn’t. You have to make your wise choice then.
Is Semolina good for Heart?
Well if you consider that semolina is low on sodium count and high in potassium, magnesium, phosphorus and selenium, it is a good choice for heart. But once again, it’s minus the fibre which is also one of the important nutrient to maintain healthy heart. So don’t opt for just the plain rava upma… instead toss in some sprouts or veggies and limit the amount of salt used and then add it occasionally to your meals. As a frequent use, reach out for other fibre rich grains for sure. Semolina isn’t that one grain you need to rely on for a healthy heart. Balancing the ingredients and nutrients of the meal is the true art one needs to master.
So What’s Semolina…..
A ground version of wheat,
Consume it if you like it…
But to make a healthy meal,
You need to make a deal…
With veggies surely...