Is Millet Good For Weight Loss?

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Some diets remove whole grains but they can still be good for getting in shape. Find out whether millet is good for weight loss or not.

Boiled millet is relatively low in calories, contains a bit of fiber, and offers small amounts of protein, vitamins, and minerals.

The result of this is that eating more millet will likely help you feel fuller and potentially helps you eat smaller portions of foods that are less helpful for weight loss.

If this is the case, millet can be good for weight loss in your situation.

On the flip side, keep in mind that just adding millet on top of your typical diet will likely not offer you the results you want.

Additionally, there are foods and more specifically, whole grains that are better for weight loss.

Something else to note is that there are many important nutrients that millet does not really include enough of. You want to consider other nutritious foods too.

Calories in millet

While the total number of calories in millet is not the only important detail, it can be a helpful starting point for figuring out whether this food is good for weight loss or not.

100 grams of boiled millet contain around 119 calories (1). One cup of boiled millet (174 g) contains about 207 calories.

Food categories like vegetables and fruits tend to be lower in calories than this. However, it is still fair to say that boiled millet is relatively low in calories.

As you can expect from a whole grain many of its calories come from carbs.

More specifically, 97 of the calories above come from carbohydrates (23.7 g per 100 grams of which 1.3 g fiber).

This makes millet generally not suited for low-carb diets like the keto diet.

That aside, boiled millet is still relatively low in calories. Where this energy comes from still matters but so far this looks helpful for losing weight.

Vitamins and minerals in millet

The vitamins and minerals in foods like millet will often not make or break your weight loss journey. However, there are cases where this does matter for this purpose and simply plays a role in your general health.

100 grams of cooked millet provides you with approximately (1):

  • Manganese: 14% of the DV (Daily Value)
  • Magnesium: 11% of the DV
  • Phosphorus: 10% of the DV
  • Copper: 8% of the DV
  • Niacin: 7% of the DV

And a few other vitamins and minerals in less significant amounts.

These amounts of vitamins and minerals in millet are welcome but not that impressive compared to many other food options.

You want to consume other nutritious foods too.

Fiber in millet for weight loss

Fiber is a specific category of carbohydrate that is important when trying to lose weight.

Cooked millet contains around 1.3 grams of fiber per 100 grams (1).

This is a decent but somewhat low amount of fiber per 100 grams compared to many plant-based whole foods.

Fiber tends to be helpful for weight loss for a few reasons.

The main one is that it can help you feel fuller. Many people struggle with hunger and cravings while losing weight so this can be helpful.

Additionally, fiber is generally considered to be good for your gut health. In turn, your gut health plays a role in your weight and general health.

The extra fiber in millet is helpful for weight loss. Do keep in mind there are better food options for this nutrient too.

Protein in millet for weight loss

Protein is one of the three categories of macronutrients. The nutrients in it are often helpful for weight loss.

Cooked millet contains about 3.5 grams of protein per 100 grams (1).

An interesting example to show the contrast with other foods is that there are about 25.4 grams of protein in 100 grams of salmon (2).

So cooked millet is not that high in protein.

Even when it comes to plant-based foods, there are whole grains higher in protein.

This is unfortunate because protein can benefit weight loss by making you feel fuller and helping you build/preserve muscle.

Additionally, the calories from protein require more energy from your body to process than the same number in carbs or fat.

Can you lose weight by eating millet?

Millet is relatively low in calories, contains a decent amount of fiber, and offers small amounts of protein, vitamins, and minerals.

If eating more of this food helps you eat less of foods that are worse for weight loss, you can lose weight by eating millet.

At the same time, you still need to make this change in the things you eat. If you just eat more millet without doing anything else, you will likely not lose weight.

Additionally, it is worth noting there are foods that are better for weight loss too.

You also don’t want to forget to eat other nutritious foods. There are a variety of nutrients that are important for weight loss and health that millet does not really offer in sufficient amounts.

Lastly, keep in mind that some people are allergic to wheat products. These individuals should avoid millet anyway. Others are not very tolerant of millet and may want to choose other foods as well.

Does millet reduce belly fat?

Many people get the impression that you have to eat specific foods to reduce the amount of belly fat you have.

Unfortunately, this is not really the case. Not with millet and not with other foods.

To lose the fat around your stomach, you have to lose enough weight overall.

As you lose more and more body fat, more and more of this will come from your belly.

That means millet can potentially help you reduce belly fat but that this will not always be the case. Even if you do lose weight, most of your fat loss may come from other areas first.

How to consume millets for weight loss?

Similar to many whole grains millets are a versatile food option. Some ways to consume them are more helpful for weight loss than others.

First of all, you need to cook millet before eating it. Boiling will be the best way to do this in terms of weight loss.

After that, a few weight-loss-friendly dishes you can combine millet with include:

  • Soup
  • Salads
  • Smoothie

You can also use millet similar to oatmeal.

That means cooking it with water and/or milk and adding some berries or other fruits and spices like for example cinnamon.

When trying to lose weight you generally want to avoid millet flour and recipes that use this as an ingredient like pancakes, noodles, bread, cookies, and cake.

Converting whole grains into flour typically involves removing a lot of the fiber. This is typically not good for losing weight.

What is the best time to eat millets for weight loss?

Losing weight is not only about what you do. When you do activities and eat things like millet can influence your weight loss results too.

For now, the research about food timing is not perfect yet.

However, one thing you can say is that eating too close to bedtime can negatively impact your sleep.

That means the best time to eat millets for weight loss is anywhere that is not the two to four hours before you go to sleep (and of course not during the night).

Over time, research may be able to say more about meal timing throughout the day.

Are oats or millet better for weight loss?

Oats are a popular whole grain alternative to millet so you may wonder how these two compare for weight loss.

Because preparation methods can vary, I’ll compare the nutrition values of the raw whole grains in the table below (3, 4).

Nutrition Detail
Per 100 Grams
Raw MilletsRaw Oats
Calories378 calories379 calories
Fiber8.5 grams10.1 grams
Protein11 grams13.2 grams
Are oats or millet better for weight loss?

From these nutrition details, you can conclude that oats will likely be better for weight loss than millet.

This statement applies to how good oatmeal is for weight loss compared to millet prepared in a similar way too.

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Matt Claes founded Weight Loss Made Practical to help people get in shape and stay there after losing 37 pounds and learning the best of the best about weight loss, health, and longevity for over 4 years. Over these years he has become an expert in nutrition, exercise, and other physical health aspects.