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Millet vs Broad (Fava) Beans: Which One is Better for You?

This article explains the key similarities and differences between millet and broad (fava) beans, foods from the grains and legumes food groups. Read on to learn more about the millet vs broad (fava) beans comparison.
Michael Whaley, Health Writer

Written by Michael Whaley, Health Writer. Updated on February 15, 2023.

Although millet and broad (fava) beans belong to different food groups, while millet belong is a grain, and broad (fava) beans belong to legumes food group, and it’s not that common to compare foods from different groups, people are often interested in these comparisons as well.

That’s why we decided to create an in-depth article that compares millet and broad (fava) beans, their nutritional values, similarities, differences, macronutrients, and micronutrients – vitamins and minerals.

Generally speaking, foods from grains and legume food groups are both high in carbs and protein and valuable addition to a plant-based diet.

Now, let’s see how millet and broad (fava) beans compare specifically.

Millet

Millet (Panicum miliaceum) is an ancient grain that is grown in many parts of the world, including Africa, Asia, and Europe.

It is a good source of carbohydrates, dietary fibers, and small amounts of vitamins and minerals like magnesium, phosphorus, and B vitamins. It is also gluten-free and easy to digest, making it a great option for people with gluten sensitivities or celiac disease.

Millet has a mild and nutty flavor and can be used in a variety of ways. It can be cooked and eaten as a side dish, added to soups and stews, or ground into flour and used in baking. It can also be used as a replacement for other grains in recipes. It is often used in traditional African and Asian dishes and an important food source for people in these regions.

Millet is an excellent source of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), and Vitamin B3 (Niacin).

It also contains a good amount of Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine), and Vitamin B9 (Folate).

Broad (Fava) Beans

Broad beans, also known as fava beans or faba beans (Vicia faba), are a type of legume native to North Africa and the Middle East.

They are a popular ingredient in many vegan and vegetarian dishes due to their high protein and fiber content, as well as their mild, slightly sweet flavor.

Broad beans are also a good source of several important nutrients, including potassium, iron, and B vitamins.

They can be enjoyed in a variety of dishes, such as broad bean soup, dips such as Bigilla, and salads.

In addition to being a nutritious food, broad beans have been shown to have a number of potential health benefits.

They have been linked to lower cholesterol levels and improved blood sugar control, and may also help to reduce the risk of certain types of cancer.

Broad (Fava) Beans are an excellent source of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), and Vitamin B9 (Folate).

They also contain a good amount of Vitamin B3 (Niacin), Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), and Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine) and some Vitamin K.

Millet vs Broad (Fava) Beans Nutrition

Now that we’ve described the origin, taste, and usage of these foods, we can move to the most interesting part – comparing millet vs broad (fava) beans.

This comparison will start by comparing the caloric value of millet and broad (fava) beans and their macronutrients and then go more in-depth by analyzing their vitamin and mineral content.

MilletBroad (Fava) Beans
Energy378 kcal341 kcal
Carbs72.8 g58.3 g
Sugar0 g5.7 g
Fiber8.5 g25 g
Protein11 g26.1 g
Fat4.22 g1.53 g
Saturated Fat0.723 g0.254 g

Millet vs Broad (Fava) Beans Calories

Most calories in raw grains and legumes come from carbs. Peanuts are an exception here, but they are often considered a nut instead of a legume because of their nutritional profile.

Comparing broad (fava) beans vs millet for weight loss, broad (fava) beans are slightly lower in calories, with 341 calories per 100 grams, compared to 378 calories per 100 grams of millet.

However, both millet and broad (fava) beans can and should be a part of a healthy diet, and neither one shouldn’t be avoided if you’re looking to lose weight.

Millet vs Broad (Fava) Beans Protein

Legumes and most legume products, including millet and broad (fava) beans, are important sources of plant-based protein.

Broad (Fava) Beans offer around 58% more protein than millet.

Broad (Fava) Beans have 26.1 grams of protein per 100 grams, while millet has 11 grams of protein per 100 grams.

Millet vs Broad (Fava) Beans Carbs

Counting carbs can be important for some people for different reasons, including blood sugar control, weight management, or athletic performance.

It’s also important for people on a keto diet, so let’s compare the carbs content in millet and broad (fava) beans.

The total amount of carbohydrates is around 20% higher in millet than in broad (fava) beans. It have 72.8 grams per 100 grams, compared to 58.3 grams in broad (fava) beans.

There’s less sugar in millet than in broad (fava) beans, 100% precisely.

One handful of millet (28 grams) contains 0 grams of sugar, while the same amount of broad (fava) beans contains 1.6 grams.

Lastly, let’s take a look at the dietary fiber in millet and broad (fava) beans.

Dietary fiber keeps the digestive system healthy and helps with weight management by promoting a sense of fullness.

With 7 grams of fiber per portion, broad (fava) beans are a better source of fiber than millet which offer 2.4 grams per portion.

Millet vs Broad (Fava) Beans Fats

Like most other grains and legumes, with the exception of lupins and peanuts, millet and broad (fava) beans are low in fat.

Fats in millet and broad (fava) beans are mostly healthy unsaturated fats. They are naturally cholesterol-free and trans-fat-free.

Total fat in millet and broad (fava) beans:

  • Millet: 4.2 grams per 100 grams
  • Broad (Fava) Beans: 1.5 per 100 grams

Speaking of saturated fats, broad (fava) beans are 57% lower in saturated fats.

Broad (Fava) Beans and millet contain 0.3 grams and 0.7 grams of saturated fat per 100 grams, respectively.

Millet vs Broad (Fava) Beans Vitamins Content

This section will discuss the vitamin content of millet and broad (fava) beans.

Vitamins are micronutrients, meaning we need only a small amount. However, they are very important for many processes in our bodies.

Millet has a higher amount of vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B1 (Thiamine), vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), vitamin B9 (Folate), and vitamin K.

However, broad (fava) beans have a higher amount of vitamin B3 (Niacin), and vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine).

Millet and broad (fava) beans contain the same amount of vitamin D, vitamin B12 (Cobalamin), and vitamin E.

The following table shows the exact amount of vitamins millet and broad (fava) beans contain side by side, so you can easily compare them.

MilletBroad (Fava) Beans
Vitamin A053 IU
Vitamin C01.4 mg
Vitamin D00
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)0.421 mg0.555 mg
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)0.29 mg0.333 mg
Vitamin B3 (Niacin)4.72 mg2.83 mg
Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)0.848 mg0.976 mg
Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine)0.384 mg0.366 mg
Vitamin B9 (Folate)85 µg423 µg
Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)00
Vitamin E0.05 mg0.05 mg
Vitamin K0.9 µg9 µg

Millet vs Broad (Fava) Beans Minerals Content

Minerals are important for our body to function properly. We need only a small amount of minerals, so they are called micronutrients.

Some minerals, like iron, calcium, zinc or, iodine, are relatively hard to get on a plant-based diet, so it’s important to choose your foods thoughtfully. This part of the millet and broad (fava) beans comparison focuses on their mineral content.

Millet is a better source of calcium, copper, fluoride, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, sodium, and zinc than broad (fava) beans.

Millet and broad (fava) beans contain the same amount of manganese.

Check out the table below to learn how millet and broad (fava) beans compare when it comes to mineral content.

MilletBroad (Fava) Beans
Calcium8 mg103 mg
Copper0.75 mg0.824 mg
Fluoride02.2 µg
Iron3.01 mg6.7 mg
Magnesium114 mg192 mg
Manganese1.63 mg1.63 mg
Phosphorus285 mg421 mg
Potassium195 mg1060 mg
Selenium2.7 µg8.2 µg
Sodium5 mg13 mg
Zinc1.68 mg3.14 mg

The Final Word

Millet and broad (fava) beans are highly nutritious and a great addition to a plant-based diet.

Both millet and broad (fava) beans are high in specific vitamins and minerals, and including them in your diet will give you the most benefits they offer.

Antioxidants found in grains and legumes can help to protect cells from damage and may reduce the risk of certain diseases and the effects of aging.

Additionally, the fiber and other nutrients in these foods can support the health of the digestive system and may even help to prevent certain digestive cancers.

Legumes and grains are a versatile food that can be incorporated into any meal of the day, including breakfast, lunch, or dinner. They can be served hot or cold, making them a convenient and tasty addition to a variety of dishes.

Sources

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