The Maida Conundrum


Maida, also known as All-Purpose Flour, is widely considered to be unhealthy and not good for the body. What is the science behind this?
Before that, let us understand how is maida made!

Any seed is basically 3 layers – fiber-rich outer layer called bran, the nutrient-rich germ and the carb-rich inner ingredient called endosperm. Maida is made from wheat after removing the fiber-rich outer bran, and the nutrient-rich germ from the seed. This means, maida is essentially carbohydrate-rich endosperm and is made after refining the wheat flour.

Since the nutrients and fiber content is removed, maida will be very high in GI (Glycemic Index). Higher the glycemic index of food faster does it become energy and gets released as glucose into the blood. Hence, maida is not a healthy choice for people who are insulin resistant (diabetic). Eating excessive maida products along with low fiber intake can hence impair gut health and meddle with the digestion of food & absorption of nutrients into the body.

Maida is also bleached using Benzyl Peroxide or other bleaches (Azodicarbonamide, chlorine gas etc) for its white colour and softness. One of the byproduct during this bleaching process called Alloxan is widely considered to be dangerous for the beta cells of the pancreas (based on the animal-based study of alloxan)

All that said, once in a while Kerala-porotta or maida based food is not going to make much of an impact. One day of clean eating is not going to make you healthy. Similarly, one day of maida is not going to make you really unhealthy either!

Sustainability and discipline is the key to a healthy, fit and young life!

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