This Indian Millet helped me lose fat and save money

By Madhurie Singh, December 15, 2023

This Indian Millet helped me lose fat and save money

Are you looking for a new and healthy way to lose weight? Have you heard of the superfood, barley? Well, you’re in luck because I have personally experienced the benefits of incorporating barley into my diet and have lost 6 kg in the last 6 months without doing any gym workout.

Barley is a great source of fibre, protein, and essential vitamins and minerals. It also has a low glycemic index, which means it helps regulate blood sugar levels and keeps you feeling full for longer periods. This makes it an ideal food for weight loss.

I stumbled upon barley when I was researching my Indian roots for a healthier way to eat. I learned that barley is the Indian version of oats and is commonly used in soups and stews. I started incorporating barley into my diet by adding it to my salads, and soups, and even using it as a rice substitute.

Not only did barley help me lose weight, but it also helped me with inflammation in my joints after taking the Covid vaccine. I was worried that I was getting rheumatoid arthritis due to an autoimmune reaction from the vaccine. However, I found an excellent rheumatologist in Pune. This excellent Doctor introduced me to Barley along with a mild dose of Methotrexate to lower my immunity a bit. I started eating barley to help with the inflammation. Barley is known to have anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce swelling in the body. 

My Journey with Barley

My journey with barley has been one of the most exciting and rewarding experiences. As someone who has always struggled with weight loss, I was looking for a healthy and sustainable way to shed some pounds. That’s when I discovered barley, the Indian superfood that helped me lose 6 kg in the last 6 months without doing any gym workout.

At first, I was sceptical about incorporating barley into my diet. I wasn’t sure how it would taste and how I would be able to use it in my meals. However, after some research and experimentation, I found that barley was incredibly versatile and easy to use in a variety of dishes.

I started by adding barley to my salads, soups, and stews. It gave my meals a nutty and chewy texture that I enjoyed. I also used barley as a rice substitute and found that it worked well in dishes like biryani and pilaf.

One of the most significant benefits of barley was that it kept me feeling full for longer periods. This helped me avoid snacking and overeating, which had always been a problem for me in the past. I also noticed that my digestion improved, and I experienced fewer bloating and indigestion issues.

Another benefit of barley was that it helped me with inflammation in my joints after taking the COVID-19 vaccine. I was worried that I was getting rheumatoid arthritis due to an autoimmune reaction from the vaccine. However, I found an excellent rheumatologist in Pune and started eating barley to help with the inflammation. Barley is known to have anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce swelling in the body.

Overall, my journey with barley has been a positive and life-changing experience. Not only did it help me lose weight, but it also improved my overall health and well-being. I highly recommend incorporating barley into your diet and experiencing the benefits for yourself.

Additionally, barley is known to have cancer-fighting properties due to its high levels of antioxidants. It also helps regulate digestion and can improve heart health.

Overall, incorporating barley into your diet can be a great way to lose weight while also improving your overall health and well-being. Give it a try and see the benefits for yourself!

Why were you running after a foreign ka maal when we have been growing and eating this amazing grain traditionally for ages?

Tricks and Tips When Cooking Barley

I have to tell you that it’s not just easy to cook it tastes also better than most other grains.

  1. But the trick is to use unpolished barley only. You should find it on Amazon or any local Kirana shop. There are several polished barley also available which you can buy only if unpolished is not available. Unpolished barley will take a lot of time to cook. So soak it the previous night.
  2. My second tip to you is to soak extra for two to three uses and freeze each lot separately in a steel or glass container only. No plastic or ziplock should be used for freezing.
  3. The third tip is to use a pressure cooker to boil the barley. Par boil it. Like half-boiled. So that when you can reheat and recook the barley won’t become mushy.
  4. The Better way to boil Barley is by letting it boil in an open container so that you don’t spoil its nutrition in high pressure. I use an earthen pot and with extra water let the barley simmer for 1 hour. Add 2 teaspoons of ghee to keep barley from sticking.

Nutritional Comparision of Barley with Oats

Let me do a quick comparison between Barley and Oats.

When it comes to comparing the nutritional value of barley and oats, there are some similarities and differences between the two grains.

Let’s compare the nutritional content of 30 gm of soaked barley versus 30 gm of oats: –

Calories: Both barley and oats provide similar calorie content, with 30gm of soaked barley providing around 100 calories, and 30gm of oats providing around 110 calories.

Carbohydrates: Both grains are high in carbohydrates, with soaked barley providing around 22 grams and oats providing around 19 grams of carbs per 30 gm serving. However, barley has a lower glycemic index than oats, which means it releases energy more slowly and can help regulate blood sugar levels.

Fibers: Both barley and oats are excellent sources of dietary fibers, but barley is slightly higher in fiber than oats. A 30 gm serving of soaked barley contains around 3 grams of fibers, while oats contain around 2 grams of fiber.

Protein: Both grains are good sources of plant-based protein, with soaked barley containing around 3 grams of protein per 30gm serving, and oats containing around 4 grams of protein.

Fat: Both grains are low in fat, with soaked barley providing around 0.5 grams of fat per 30gm serving, and oats providing around 2 grams of fat.

Vitamins and minerals: Both grains are rich in essential vitamins and minerals such as iron, magnesium, and phosphorus. However, barley is a better source of selenium and copper than oats. Overall, while both grains have similar nutritional profiles, barley is slightly higher in fiber and has a lower glycemic index than oats. However, oats are a better source of protein and contain more fat than barley. Ultimately, choosing between barley and oats will depend on your personal preferences and nutritional needs.

Here’s a table comparing the nutritional content of cooked barley and cooked rolled oats per 30 grams of each:

NutrientCooked Barley (30g)Cooked Rolled Oats (30g)
Calories37 kcal21.3 kcal
Protein0.684 g0.741 g
Carbohydrates8.691 g3.654 g
Dietary Fiber1.17 g0.51 g
Sugars0.09 g0.11 g
Fat0.105 g0.42 g
Saturated Fat0.020 g0.071 g
Monounsaturated Fat0.029 g0.125 g
Polyunsaturated Fat0.0396 g0.1752 g
Omega-3 Fatty Acids0.0087 g0.0234 g
Omega-6 Fatty Acids0.0276 g0.1515 g
VitaminsCooked Barley (30g)Cooked Rolled Oats (30g)
Vitamin A (IU)0 IU0 IU
Vitamin C (mg)0 mg0 mg
Vitamin D (IU)0 IU0 IU
Vitamin E (mg)0.036 mg0.006 mg
Vitamin K (µg)0.06 µg0.03 µg
Thiamin (Vitamin B1) (mg)0.024 mg0.0336 mg
Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)0.0102 mg0.0126 mg
Niacin (Vitamin B3) (mg)0.1224 mg0.0243 mg
Vitamin B6 (mg)0.0138 mg0.0042 mg
Folate (Vitamin B9) (µg)0.9 µg2.1 µg
Vitamin B12 (µg)0 µg0 µg
MineralsCooked Barley (30g)Cooked Rolled Oats (30g)
Calcium (mg)3.3 mg15.6 mg
Iron (mg)0.141 mg0.447 mg
Magnesium (mg)3.9 mg16.8 mg
Phosphorus (mg)10.8 mg28.5 mg
Potassium (mg)22 mg21.3 mg
Sodium (mg)0.6 mg0.6 mg
Zinc (mg)0.105 mg0.147 mg
Copper (mg)0.0213 mg0.0447 mg
Manganese (mg)0.0807 mg0.686 mg
Selenium (µg)2.55 µg0.33 µg

Why I prefer Barley over Oats?

I am eating this as one of my favorite breakfast and at times dinner meal because of it fat burning property. Isn’t that why Oats is so popularized? I am not really against Oats. Its just that Oats is imported mostly from Australia and other countries. Imported food is far from your own birth-place. This distance is also one of the causes of health problems in Indians. Eating what is grown around you especially within 100km radius is the mantra for being fit physically and mentally. Another reason to stick to local foods is that genetically we are more prone to absorbing foods that our grandparents ate. And lastly economically too it will help you with savings as importing food means extra cost of transportation which obviously the consumer, that is you have to pay. So go and buy one kg of Barley now!

Recipe of Barley Upma


Barley 1 cup: Soak 1 cup of Barley overnight. It will become white and slightly large. (Barley is to Indians what Oats to the Westerns!)

One onion chopped

One tomato cubes

One capsicum chopped

Peas for protein

Lots of chopped dhania

Rai (mustard) seeds have selenium (Anti-inflammatory, Antioxidant, helps thyroid, builds immunity and anti-cancer. But it must be taken in only a small quantity daily and that is why its just a teaspoon that we Indians add in our dishes!), magnesium (Mg is needed to make Vit D absorb Calcium into the bones without magnesium all the calcium you may be eating goes into the toilet!) and omega 3 (A very important essential fat that is needed for the brain function).

Garlic chopped (We all know its good anti microbial. It has Selenium to cure inflammation, fight cancer, repair cells, antioxidants. It has Phytochemicals that increases HDL, reduces LDL oxidation, prevents blood clotting). My younger son eat 1 garlic clove daily! Always chew garlic and then swallow for the real benefit.

Curry leaves prevent excess fat absorption and it is anti-microbial.


Boil it in a pressure cooker or cook it directly like rawa with water.

Soaked Barley

In a kadhai add only one of these oils. (coconut oil if you are South India, Mustard oil if you are North, West, East Indian, Groundnut oil if you are from Maharashtra and South or Ghee ;). Idea is to use what your genes are used to since generations.)

Add mustard seeds and let it pop.

Add chopped onions and saute it.

Add tomatoes and Curry leaves with chopped garlic. Did you know that Curry leaves lowers the unhealthy fat absorption? Also, Garlic helps in lowering the LDL and VLDL which lead to blockages in the blood vessels. But if you are cooking in Ghee or Pure cold pressed vegetable oils, then you will have a healthy ratio of LDL and HDL. Keep reading future articles on how Barley is magic to your weight loss.

Cooked Barley upma

How was the recipe?

Do let me know if you enjoyed the recipe. Or if you made any other version of Upma. In my next article, I will share how I stopped snacking mid-meals. I think this one is the game changer for those who have tried everything and are frustrated after trying out every diet in the world like me. Search for my name Madhurie Singh and gamechanger weight loss tips.

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