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Sorghum

 

Sorghum is a genus of flowering plants in the grass family Poaceae. Seventeen of the twenty-five species are native to Australia, with the range of some extending to Africa, Asia, Mesoamerica, and certain islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. Wikipedia

Scientific name: Sorghum

Energy: 329.1 Calories (per 100 g)

Protein: 10.6 g (per 100 g)

Potassium: 363 mg (per 100 g)

Calcium: 13 mg (per 100 g)

 

One species, Sorghum bicolor native to Africa with many cultivated forms now, is an important crop worldwide, used for food (as grain and in sorghum syrup or “sorghum molasses”), animal fodder, the production of alcoholic beverages, and biofuels. Most varieties are drought– and heat-tolerant, and are especially important in arid regions, where the grain is one of the staples for poor and rural people. These varieties form important components of pastures in many tropical regions. S. bicolor is an important food crop in AfricaCentral America, and South Asia, and is the fifth-most important cereal crop grown in the world.

Some species of sorghum can contain levels of hydrogen cyanidehordenine, and nitrates lethal to grazing animals in the early stages of the plants’ growth. When stressed by drought or heat, plants can also contain toxic levels of cyanide and/or nitrates at later stages in growth.

Another Sorghum species, Johnson grass (S. halapense), is classified as an invasive species in the US by the Department of Agriculture.

 

Nutrition

A 100 gram amount of raw sorghum provides 329 calories, 72% carbohydrates, 4% fat, and 11% protein (table). Sorghum supplies numerous essential nutrients in rich content (20% or more of the Daily Value, DV), including protein; fiber; the B vitamins niacinthiamin and vitamin B6; and several dietary minerals, including iron (26% DV) and manganese (76% DV) (table). Sorghum nutrient contents generally are similar to those of raw oats (see nutrition table). Among other similarities to oats, sorghum contains no gluten, making it useful for gluten-free diets