Is Puffed Millet Cereal Healthy?

A young girl is sitting down to a bowl of cereal.
Image Credit: Purestock/Purestock/Getty Images

Puffed millet is a type of grain, usually sold as a breakfast cereal. In addition to being low in fat, millet is also gluten-free, making it a nutritious option for people who are gluten-intolerant or who have celiac disease. When you make puffed millet part of your breakfast, you'll also get a small dose of certain key vitamins and minerals. Combine the cereal with other nutritious foods to create a healthy and well-balanced morning meal.

Just the Basics

One cup of puffed millet cereal contains 74 calories and less than 1 gram of total fat. Eating a healthy breakfast low in fat is a good way to start your day, notes Harvard Medical School, and puffed millet cereal is one low-fat choice. Limiting your intake of saturated and trans fat is a good way to lower your risk of heart disease, according to the Harvard School of Public Health. A cup of puffed millet cereal also supplies 2.7 grams of protein but supplies less than 1 gram of fiber.

Minerals in Millet

Puffed millet cereal isn't too impressive when it comes to minerals, but you do get small amounts of certain ones. A cup of puffed millet supplies 0.59 milligram of iron, which is about 7 percent of the 8 milligrams of iron men need every day and 3 percent of the 18 milligrams women should have each day. The 0.33 milligram of zinc per cup is another advantage. Zinc helps your body heal, and the cup of puffed millet cereal is 4 percent of the 8 milligrams women need each day and 3 percent of the 11 milligrams men require daily. You'll get small amounts of magnesium and phosphorus, too.

Various Vitamins

The vitamin content of puffed millet cereal isn't that impressive either. The 17 micrograms of folic acid in a cup of puffed millet translates to 4 percent of the 400 micrograms healthy adults need each day. Folic acid supports the health of your skin, liver and eyes, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. Puffed millet cereal supplies trace amounts of thiamin, riboflavin, niacin and vitamin K, as well.

Making Puffed Millet Part of Your Diet

Harvard Medical School recommends choosing a breakfast cereal that contains at least 6 grams of fiber per serving. In terms of fiber, puffed millet isn't your most nutritious cereal choice, but if you still want to eat puffed millet, punch up the fiber content of your meal by adding fruit, such as raspberries or pears. You might also look for enriched versions of puffed millet cereal. Many brands of cereal add certain vitamins and minerals, such as B vitamins and vitamin D, to their cereals, which can improve the nutritional value.