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 Is Idli healthy?

Is Idli healthy?

Soft, Steamed, Delicious and puffy idli drowned in a bowl of ever - so soothing sambhar has become nation’s one of the most loved recipes. It is also a very popular street food but does not hold an image of unhealthy and calorie laden food.

Since Idli is steamed and not fried in oil like most oily snacks, the calorie intake is relatively low. There is no additional fat added which maintains the nourishment. This makes Idli a better option over fried samosas and pakoras.

Idli is light and fills you with energy. It is a fermented food which is easy to digest. Fermentation of foods increases the bioavailability of nutrients which helps the body to assimilate more nutrition. The bioavailability of proteins and Vitamin B contents also increases. The microorganisms break down the complex protein, carbohydrates and fat efficiently thereby helping to assimilate more nutrients from the food.

In an era, where antibiotics are prescribed so frequently and our gut flora is so frequently damaged , fermented foods replenish the micro flora of the digestive tract and also improve the absorption of nutrients. Apart from fermentation, the lactic acid bacteria alters the pH balance of the gut thus helping in a long term gut health. Keep in mind your stomach has an incredible part in deciding your well being! 

Idli is a perfect combination of urad dal and rice which make it a complete protein. It additionally is without gluten, so if you need to go gluten free, Idli would be the best option for you. It is also a low calorie recipe, thus making it a good option for people on weight loss.

One Idli has only 33 Calories. Yes, it is healthy. See here for complete nutritional details of idli

Is Idli allowed for Diabetics?

Idli is a moderate Glycemic Index (GI) recipe and since it is fermented it is pre digested by micro organisms, thus prove not a very happy food for diabetics. The only glitch is that rice forms an important component of the idli batter. Par boiled white rice is full of simple carbohydrates that may induce weight gain. But since it is steamed and also contains a considerable amount of urad dal, the carbohydrate content in 1 serving of idli may not be bad for your waistline. So idlis are not recommneded for Diabetics. Given below are idli variations which are safe for Diabetics. 

Or you can modify your traditional recipe a bit and replace rice with oats or barley. You can also add in some other pulses like moong dal to further enhance the protein content. Some vegetables and spices can also be added to further lower the GI  and make your idli more healthy. Oats idli, Oats Rava Idli, Barley Idli and Green Moong Dal and Vegetable Idli are safe for Diabetics.

Is Idli Healthy


Fluffy as cotton balls, white as the moon’ - every South Indian remembers those fond descriptions of Idli that mom used to convince them to eat breakfast when they were kids. Indeed, that is how the perfect Idli must be too. Grinding of batter and the preparation of Idli is an almost daily affair in South Indian homes. Being a safe, tasty and wholesome breakfast, it is preferred by people all over the world now. Choose good quality par-boiled rice (ask for idli rice, which is small and stout) and urad for making idlis, as the colour and softness of the end product depends on it. The amount of water to be added when grinding the urad changes according to the quality of the dal, so keep adding little by little till the batter is soft and fluffy, and do not make it watery. After making the required idlis store the remaining batter in the fridge. It remains good for almost a week, and can be used to make Sada Dosa , Uttapa and dainty Appe as well.
Popular South Indian Snacks like idli and dosa are extremely tasty and nutritious, but often not suitable for those with high blood sugar because they are made predominantly with rice. Here, is a diabetic-friendly version of idli that replaces rice with wholesome moong dal. Adding veggies to the batter improves the nutrient-quotient as well as flavour and texture of the idlis. Relish this mouth-watering Green Moong Dal and Vegetable Idli right off the steamer, with sizzling hot Sambhar .
Idli is the first dish that comes to mind when one thinks of South Indian cuisine. Not without reason – this easy-to-digest and wholesome dish is perfect to have at any time of the day, for breakfast, evening snacks or dinner. Barley Idli is a modified version of this traditional snack, which uses a batter of barley, rice and urad dal. Assorted veggies add a splash of colours, flavours and of course more nutrition to this zero-oil snack. Serve the Barley Idlis immediately with Sambhar . To keep the snack totally oil-free, wet the idli moulds with water instead of greasing with oil.
Idlis are a breakfast favourite even outside South India. Fibre rich oats and rava combine to make delicious instant idlis that you can enjoy fresh off the steamer with sambhar and chutney .
Although the original idli itself is quite nutritious, this innovative version is even more wholesome and filling. Oats idli replaces rice with oats, to help reduce the fat content and keep cholesterol levels in check. You can also add some boiled veggies to the batter to enhance the fibre content further. These idlis can be prepared any time, since the batter needs to be fermented only for 1 hour. However, this also means that the idlis will not rise when cooked, so don’t worry when you see a flat outcome. Enjoy these idlis fresh and hot with Healthy Green Chutney and Sambhar. Enjoy how to make Oats Idli recipe with detailed step by step photos and video below.