What is Farina and Its Surprising Health Benefits?

If you love wheat or you’re just into a healthy diet, then you should hear about “Farina”. If you don’t then, Farina hasn’t been that popular even up to this day. It offers a wide range of uses in different recipes as well as dishes.

Please don’t punish yourself by not knowing what Farina is, because in this article, let me share with you what is Farina and its different health benefits.

First, What is Farina?

Before we go to the numerous health benefits and delicious recipes, you must know what Farina is and its uses.

What is Farina?

Farina came from a Latin word that means ‘meal’ or ‘flour’. It is a form of milled wheat commonly used to prepare breakfast meals such as hot cereals. It is composed of the grain’s endosperm and germ or wheat kernels and eventually mulled to a fine granular consistency. Potatoes or rice can also be considered as Farina once is milled and popularly known as wheat cereal.

Farina can is known to be the best source of dietary iron, which is perfect for vegetarians. However, it contains gluten which is not suitable for individuals who are on a strict gluten-free diet. You can get one yourself in the local market store, and some commercialized flour contains as much as 50% of the recommended daily value with a single 120-calorie serving.

The taste of Farina is very bland, which means it can be partnered and added with almost any toppings in hot cereals such as mixed maple, fruits, honey, cinnamon, and so much more. Farina is also finely ground, so it is easier to prepare and cook in your kitchen without spending too much effort and time. Some of the most popular brands of Farina include Mills, Malt-o-Meal, or Cream of Wheat. They offer both instant or quick cook and even microwavable packets.

What are the uses of Farina?

This milled cereal grain is also an alternative to toasted cassava flour mixture in Italian dishes such as polenta. Bakers also use it to prevent the dough from sticking to the surface during the process. On the other hand, Farina could also be a thickening agent for making puddings and could be an alternative or substitute to wheat flour when baking.

What are the nutritional values of Farina?

Farina is fine-grained wheat, and wheat is known to have a high source of carbohydrates. As I mentioned earlier, Farina can be the best source of nutritional iron, important for vegetarian diets. Some commercialized brands contain fiber and vitamin B, which are known to boost and increase the energy level in the body.

It might be high in sodium and taste mild, but Farina also has a lot to offer, such as:

  • High in Riboflavin
  • High in Vitamin B2
  • High in Calcium
  • High in Phosphorus
  • No Cholesterol
  • Very high is Iron
  • High in fiber
  • Very high in Selenium
  • Very low in Saturated Fats
  • Very low in Sugar

Health Benefits of Farina

If you’re very health conscious, why not try adding Farina into your diet, especially as a morning treat and see how it can benefit your overall health.

Here are some health benefits of Farina that you should know about.

1. Farina is packed with Calcium and Phosphorus

Calcium and phosphorus are a great combination for improving bone health, and the good thing is, Farina can provide you with these essential nutrients. Cheese and Farina contain a large amount of calcium, especially calcium carbonate. One study has concluded that three tablespoons of dry Farina can contain 235 mg of calcium in just one serving of cream of wheat.

It is a great idea to add it to just a cup of non-fat milk, such as almond or soy milk. In this way, it will increase the calcium content to 551 mg, which is considered half of the daily required calcium in your body.

2. Farina is an iron-rich food

Farina is considered one of the great sources of iron. Each serving contains 1mg of iron. It contains ferric phosphate that is great for people who are suffering from anemia or any iron deficiency. With the right amount of iron in our red blood cells, it helps to effectively carry oxygen and transport it in every cell in our body.

You can snack with Farina to boost its nutritional value.

3. Farina a good source of protein and carbohydrates

Since Farina is made from the endosperm or the most central part of the kernel responsible for growing the grain once it was planted, it is also considered a great source of natural carbs.

Every serving of Farina or cream of wheat contains 24 grams of carbohydrates and 4 grams of protein.

4. Farina contains energy booster B-Vitamins

Both oatmeal cereal and Farina provide almost all B vitamins (Vitamin B-12 is not included). One serving of cream of wheat contains 45mg of folate and 1.3mg of niacin which contributes to the 3 – 4% of daily niacin and folate intake in your body.

It is also great for pregnant women mainly because of its folic acid, an essential nutrient needed to reduce the risk of neural tube flaws in the baby, such as the cleft palate and spina bifida. In addition, B-vitamins also boost the transformation of carbohydrates into glucose which provides fuel or energy for the body.

Bonus: Here’s a simple Farina Bread recipe that you should try right now!

Important Notes

  • Farina should be avoided by individuals who are on a gluten-free diet primarily because it contains gluten.
  • Good thing to do to increase the fiber content of farina is to simply add a teaspoon of bran or ground flaxseed into it.
  • The B-vitamins found in farina are easily water and your body will not store them so make sure you use them daily.
  • If you’d like to cook farina, replace water with milk mainly because it makes it creamier and added more nutrients like calcium – you can even use soy or almond milk. You can always alter or vary the farina recipe to whatever you want.

Conclusion

If you enjoyed this article, please share it with your family and friends to let them know what Farina is and its health benefits. Do you have your farina recipe? Let us know by commenting on the box below.

Farina might not be as popular as the standard cereal, but it does offer tons of health benefits, plus it is very easy and simple to prepare. So what are you waiting for? Try it now!

2 thoughts on “What is Farina and Its Surprising Health Benefits?”

  1. Hi Nancy,
    I just ate a bowl of farina made with milk. I’m 69 years old. I was”raised” on farina. Both my mother and grandmother made it for me for breakfast. My grandmother even made something that we called “farina cake” She would make a big serving of farina, and add a beaten egg or two, and also melted butter, and some sugar. She would bake it in an 8 or 9 inch glass baking dish. And then she would cut it into about 9 square “cakes”. It was solid enough to pick up and eat with your hands almost like a brownie. As kids, we loved eating this as a snack. There was never a precise recipe. My grandmother was a person who could cook for a crowd and knew how to organize a kitchen to cook church banquets. I have never made “farina cake” but I still eat it for breakfast. I enjoy it and I am happy to know that it has good nutrition. I do feel like I crave it sometimes, and I wonder if that is my body telling me that I need a little more iron in my diet. I do think that I feel stronger, and more energetic within a few days of eating it. I don’t eat as much méat as I used to so I am going to increase my weekly consumption of farina. It’s a good “comfort food” as well.

    Reply
  2. Hi Nancy,
    California passed a law over ten years ago that require almond growers to irradiate their almond crops. Therefore, any nutrients that would be native to the fruit are destroyed during this process.
    Also, soy not a healthy choice because of its negative hormonal effects and the fact that most of it is genetically modified with poisons that are in the plant.

    Reply

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