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Nutrition in Naan & Its Health Benefits

What is Naan?

Naan is fresh hot bread and great comfort food. Being simple to prepare it is a staple in many cuisines. It is a popular food item all around the world.

The process of making it is similar to that of making other bread, which is combining flour, salt, fat, water and combining it and baking it in the oven.(1)

There are varieties of naans, depending on the ingredients and region. The most popular ones include:

  • Naan-e-roghani: This variety of naan is thicker and softer. It is an Afghani naan prepared with more oil and has sesame and nigella seeds sprinkled on it.
  • Butter Garlic Naan: It is an Indian classic variety and is made by brushing with garlic and butter.
  • Peshwari Naan: It is a Pakistani variety of naan and contains dried Sultani raisins, almonds, and coconut.
  • Naan-e Barbari: It is a classic Persian naan with crusted top and delicate interior. It is topped with sesame seeds.
  • Aloo Naan: It is an Indian naan that is stuffed with mashed potatoes.
  • Whole Wheat Naan: It is a naan made from whole wheat to boost its nutrient quality.

Nutrition in Naan

Naan is rich in nutrients including carbs, iron, and vitamins. One piece of commercially prepared naan contains:(2)

  • 262 calories
  • 5 grams of fats
  • 45 grams of carbohydrates
  • 9 grams of protein
  • 2 grams of fiber
  • 3 grams of sugar
  • 18% of the daily value of sodium
  • 16% of the daily value of iron
  • 58% of the daily value of thiamine
  • 33% of the daily value niacin

Naan provides a good amount of protein and some essential vitamins and minerals and also a decent amount of iron.

Health Benefits of Naan

Just like most of breads, naan is rich in carbs without much fiber. It provides energy to the body. It contains proteins, healthy fats, and iron. Its homemade version with whole grains can have additional benefits, such as fiber and probiotics.

Along with being rich in the above nutrients it tastes great and can complement a meal.

Naan’s High Fiber Alternative Benefits Health

Naan made from whole grain, sourdough, rye, and other healthy alternatives is richer in dietary fiber and can be beneficial for bowel health. It helps in regulating bowel movements and maintaining bowel health.

A study found that whole grains improve bowel health, soften feces, increases fecal weight, and improves fecal evacuation by reducing colonic transit time.(3)

Additionally, dietary fiber intake has been linked with improving heart health and reducing the risk of heart diseases.(4)

It is a Good Source of Vitamins

Naan is high in thiamine and niacin, both of which offer numerous health advantages.

Niacin is a B vitamin and is required by the body for cellular energy production and genetic stability, metabolism, and aging.(5)

Low vitamin B3 is linked with neurological problems, dementia, and other psychiatric conditions.(6)

Thiamin is a water-soluble vitamin that is not stored by the body but replenished from diet and supplements. Its deficiency may lead to problems in the nervous system and heart health. A few symptoms of thiamine deficiency include anorexia, weight loss, confusion, memory loss, malaise and muscle weakness.(7)

Naan is also a decent source of iron that is needed by the body for the production of red blood cells, which help to carry oxygen to various parts of the body. Iron also helps in muscle stores and using oxygen and is an important part of protein and enzymes in the body.

Helps in Managing Blood Sugar and Diabetes

The glycemic index of naan is 71. The glycemic index is the measure of how fast carb-containing foods elevate the blood sugar level and 55 is leveled as a low glycemic index.

Naan can be included in the low glycemic index diet as it can give the flexibility to keep the blood sugar levels moderate and prevent them from crashing. Low glycemic index diets have been found to decrease the blood sugar levels and insulin demands in people with prediabetes and diabetes.(8)

Naan can be included as part of a balanced diet if eaten in moderation. One can opt for its whole wheat variety. It can be eaten with other nutrient-rich food such as vegetables, lentils, chickpeas, and peas. This further increase the nutrients in the diet.

Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:May 10, 2022

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