It’s no secret that grains are an important part of a healthy, balanced diet. From quinoa to brown rice, grains are certainly in the spotlight, thanks to their nutrient profile and versatility.
But while some choices have become popular, there are others that also deserve their moment to shine on our plates. Among the sea of grain options, sorghum is a newer grain in many of our cuisines, but it has been used in some African and Asian dishes for years. And it’s definitely a grit you should have on your radar.
Sorghum is a cereal with a circular shape and a firm texture, even when cooked. And it can be enjoyed boiled, simmered, and even sautéed (yes, just like popcorn).
Here are some of the ways sorghum is a grain worth knowing and loving.
Sorghum is nutritious
A diet rich in whole grains is a surefire way to include fiber, antioxidants, and other nutrients in your diet. And if you’re trying to eat more whole grains, sorghum may be just what the doctor ordered.
When digging into the nutritional value of sorghum, it’s easy to see just how nutritious this grain is. Whole grain sorghum is an excellent source of 12 essential nutrients, including iron and magnesium.
A serving of cooked whole-grain sorghum provides more than twice the amount of protein as a serving of quinoa, and a half-cup serving of cooked whole-grain sorghum has almost twice the iron of a beef steak. 3 oz sirloin. This grain is also an excellent source of zinc, a nutrient that may support immune health.
Eating sorghum may promote heart health
Given that heart disease is the number one cause of death for Americans, it’s no wonder people are focusing on taking steps to support this aspect of their health. One way to do this is to manage chronic inflammation, as chronic inflammation is quite common in people with this heart condition. Sorghum appears to have anti-inflammatory benefits, which may help combat this effect and, in turn, may support your heart health.
Sorghum also contains nutrients that are emphasized on the DASH diet, including magnesium, potassium, and calcium, which may also support heart health.
It May Also Support Digestive Health
It’s clear that fiber plays a key role in your digestive health. Whole grain sorghum is a naturally gluten-free grain, and half a cup of this grain provides over 6 grams of fiber, or almost 25% of the daily recommended fiber intake.
But not only is sorghum a source of fiber, it also provides a variety of fiber, from soluble fiber to insoluble fiber, and even prebiotic fiber to help “fuel” the live probiotics in your gut. In fact, recent studies have shown the potential prebiotic activity of whole grain sorghum in the form of polyphenols present in the bran of sorghum grain.
Sorghum is naturally gluten-free
Celiac is the most common autoimmune disease in the United States. Among the many things people do to manage this disease, avoiding gluten is one of them. And unlike eating traditional bread or pasta, eating sorghum is safe for those who avoid gluten in their diet.
According to the results of a study evaluating people with celiac disease, smelling these participants in sorghum-derived food products for five days resulted in no symptoms of intolerance, and the level of antibodies to transglutaminase was not changed at the end of the five-day period. period, confirming that this grain is safe for gluten-free diets.
Sorghum is a whole grain worth trying
Sorghum is an unsung hero in the grain world, and including it in your dishes can add a splash of nutty flavor and nutrition in a simple way. Whether adding it to soups, enjoying it in taco dishes, or using it as a simple accompaniment to grains, sorghum offers a lot in terms of nutrition, flavor, and versatility. So try something new and enjoy the unique texture and flavor that sorghum has to offer.
Lauren Manaker MS, RDN, LD, CLEC
Lauren Manaker is an award-winning dietitian, book author and recipe creator who has been practicing for nearly 20 years. Learn more about Laurent
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