Say No To Maida And Yes To These 8 Nutritious Flours

07Feb

Mostly all of our baked goods are made up of maida. So, the only thought of giving up on refined flour makes us think of a strict diet regimen in which we will have to give up all bakery items, pooris, biscuits, cakes, pastries, sandwiches, burgers, etc. But substituting maida with some of the nutritious flours and replacing refined sugar with other low-calorie sweeteners, can allow us to relish our baked goods. Refined flour is the finer form of wheat made from a specific part of the wheat grain. The whole wheat grain is milled to remove the bran and germ. Only endosperm is left which is then bleached to give it a white color and thus, maida is produced.

Disadvantages of Refined Flour

Consumption of Maida can cause many problems like:

  1. Gut ailments
  2. Type 2 diabetes
  3. Hypertension
  4. Obesity
  5. Making bones weak
  6. Bloating
  7. Indigestion
  8. Constipation

Baking without Maida is not a difficult thing once you start focusing on healthy alternatives of refined flour. Maida is made up of only the endosperm part of wheat grain, which is then bleached to give the characteristic white appearance to Maida.

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8 Healthier Flour Alternatives of Maida

  1. Almond Flour – By blanching almonds, drying, grinding, and then again drying – gives a fine-textured almond flour that imparts a slightly nutty flavor to any dish prepared using it. As almonds are gluten-free, this means they need a binding agent so that their flour can impart a good texture to any dish prepared with their flour. So, eggs or baking powder can be used to fulfill the absence of gluten in the almond flour. As almond flour has good amounts of fat, you can add only a little butter to your to-be-baked dishes with almond flour as a key ingredient.
  2. Coconut Flour – Coconut flour can be easily made at home by taking grated coconut meat and squeezing out all of the coconut milk from it. Now sundry this grated coconut or just air-dry it. It can also be dried in an oven. Coconut flour is also a gluten-free flour, so to help it rise during baking, one must add eggs or baking powder in it, to fulfill the absence of gluten in it.
  3. Buckwheat Flour – Buckwheat, also known as Kuttu ka atta, is easily found at any grocery store in your area or even at online shopping apps. It pairs well with almond flour and can be widely used in making cakes, pastries, biscuits, breads, and anything else that can be baked by using this flour. Buckwheat, just like almond and coconut flour is also a gluten-free flour but if you are not allergic to gluten, then you can mix buckwheat flour with your regular wholewheat flour. Buckwheat flour in addition to being gluten-free is also rich in many nutrients and anti-oxidants.
  4. Tapioca Flour – Tapioca flour is the starch extracted from the roots of the vegetable Cassava. It is a starch-rich and gluten-free flour. It pairs well with brown rice or quinoa flour. If you want some crisp in your baked goods, then add tapioca flour to them.
  5. Quinoa Flour – A good plant-based complete protein source is quinoa flour, which is found in some shopping malls and is easily available online. It pairs well in baked goods including nuts and seeds. It is an ideal grain for those suffering from hypertension, heart problems, cholesterol, arthritis, and gout, and especially for those suffering from diabetes.
  6. Ragi Flour – Ragi or finger millet is also known as Nachni, a local produce of Bihar state of India. It is a single grain which is exceptionally rich in calcium. So, pairing it with your normal wholewheat flour or mixing it with brown rice flour gives you a perfectly baked dish, rich in calcium. It is also best to be consumed by people suffering from cholesterol, diabetes, brittle nails, and weak bones.
  7. Banana Flour – Banana flour is made by using green unripe bananas and is also a gluten-free flour. It has a powdery texture and gives the slight flavor of banana in the dish to which it is added. It can be best added in smoothies and shakes, to give them a thick consistency. It is also rich in resistant starch so it is good for your gut also. It is mainly used in baking banana muffins, cakes, bread, etc.
  8. Soy Flour – Soy flour made from soybeans is rich in protein, iron, folate, and zinc. It can be used instead of maida for making cheelas, biscuits, muthias, dal dhokla, etc.
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Conclusion

Baked and fried goods made by using Maida are unhealthy and cause many health ailments. So, it is necessary to stop its consumption and switch to healthier alternatives instead, as listed above. These alternatives are much healthier as compared to refined flour because they are rich in many nutrients and anti-oxidants.

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