Ogi, popularly known as akamu, is a pudding made from fermented corn and other grains. Ogi is a popular staple in every Nigerian home due to its versatility.
Ogi can be processed into a meal known as pap and cooked into eko (agidi). Unlike ogi, agidi is a solid meal taken with any choice of soup.
Ogi is a rich source of energy, protein, vitamins, and minerals. Although most nutrients are lost during processing, mixing other grains like millet and sorghum is beneficial to improve nutritional quality.
It's a challenging experience when weaning your baby. They might reject the introduction of cereals, but it's unlikely they might evade the consumption of ogi. Most babies love ogi because it’s 100% gluten-free and can be prepared in various ways.
While the standard breastfeeding duration by WHO remains 0 to 2 years, ogi is the best meal to introduce when introducing solids to your baby.
Ogi have so many nutrients beneficial to your baby. Aside from being a tasty pudding-like meal, it’s a great addition to your baby's development.
- Bone development
Ogi contains sorghum, millet, and corn. Calcium helps build strong bones and teeth.—babies with rickets lack calcium in their bodies. The average ogi provides the necessary amount of calcium.
- Prevents diarrhoea
Ogi contains probiotics that help maintain gut health. Probiotics prevent dysentery, stomach pain, and diarrhoea in babies and children.
- Increases energy
Babies are very energetic and require a high-calorie meal to fuel them. Ogi is very high in carbohydrates which serve as a source of energy.
- Prevents anaemia
Babies need enough iron to transport oxygen to their developing organs. Ogi with killers contain the required amount of iron per serving.
- Prevent obesity
Ogi prevents early obesity in children. Ogi contains 50% water, which keeps children full and hydrated.
- Helps digestive health
Ogi helps prevents constipation in children.
How to prepare ogi
- In a clean bowl, cut a piece of ogi and make a semi-thick paste
- Add boiling water till a pudding forms
- If it doesn't, transfer to a pot and cook on medium heat
- Add milk and little sugar for taste
Ogi is an excellent introduction to mixed-feeding children. It's packed with lots of nutrients and helps prevent constipation. There isn't a single route to prepare ogi. You can add spices like gloves and ginger for taste.