Facts and benefits of Horse gram

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Horse gram Quick Facts
Name: Horse gram
Scientific Name: Macrotyloma uniflorum
Health benefits Antioxidant activity, Assist to lose weight, Treatment for leucorrhea, Prevent constipation, Cure for diarrhea
Horse gram scientifically known as Macrotyloma uniflorum is less known. It is widely consumed as staple diet in Southern parts of India. Other name variations of Horse gram are Kulthi bean, Madras gram, Hurali and Horsegram. It is also known as lentils. Horse gram is inherent to Asia, Africa and Australia which is a vital and unexploited tropical legume crop mostly grown in dry agricultural lands. Being a short duration summer crop, it fits well in crop rotations. It is also intercropped with various cereals such as maize, sorghum, millet and pearl millet which promote increase in production and increase in soil fertility. This crop is resistant to drought. Horse gram is also used as a staple food for cattle and horses. Beans, branches and leaves are used as fodder. These small and kidney shaped beans are reddish brown to greenish brown and are good for human consumption. It is rich in iron, protein, calcium, gluten free with no sodium, cholesterol and fat. Horse grams have high content of calcium among pulses with abundant source of antioxidants.

Horse gram (Macrotyloma uniflorum) is actually a pulse crop broadly grown as well as consumed in India for thousands of years, and indigenous to the south-east Asian subcontinent as well as exotic Africa. The US National Academy of Sciences has recognized this particular legume like a possible food source for future years, thanks to its outstanding nutrition profile, drought-resistance as well as general hardiness.

Horse gram is regarded as the protein-rich lentil found on the planet. It is extremely high-powered. That’s why race horses are fed with this particular gram, which is called horse gram on the market. This particular important as well as under-utilized exotic crop is grown mainly in dry agricultural lands as well as keeps a rather low profile nowadays, but is able to expand its reputation!


Horse gram is a perennial or annual climbing herb having pubescent stems and hairs spreading. The plant bears trifoliolate leaves with 0.8 to 7 cm long petioles. Leaflets are obovate or elliptic, ovate rhomboid, 0.7 to 7.8 cm broad, 1 to 3.5 cm long. Flowers are yellow or greenish yellow which grow in clusters from leaf axils. Flowers are replaced by a pod measuring about 3 to 5.5 cm long, 6 to 8 mm broad and are acuminate and pubescent or glabrous. Pod is smooth or tomentose, slightly curved and shortly stipitate. Each pod contains 5 to 8 seeds. Seeds are smooth, reniform, ovoid in shape and olive, brown or black in color.

Health benefits of Horse Gram

Horse gram can best be considered a reddish brown legume that is full of numerous health advantages. It can benefit with a number of health issues since it is a grain that contains a good as well as rich quantity of vitamins, proteins, as well as iron. Along with weight loss, it will help in lowering of excess fat through the body. Horse gram is full of B-complex vitamin and proteins. It will help in purifying menstruation as well as cures and helps prevent arthritis. The existence of adequate dietary fiber within the gram will help balance sugar glucose as well as blood pressure levels.Listed here are some health advantages related to horse gram.

1. Helps relieve menstrual problems

It really is considered that horse gram includes a number of healing qualities that really help cope with menstruation problems. Ladies who are experiencing abnormal periods in addition to extreme bleeding can consume horse gram water regularly or have the option of including horse gram soup or even sprouts on their everyday diet. Ayurveda recommends women to take one small teaspoon of horse gram powder each morning.

2. Eliminates kidney stones

Kidney stones could be painful and therefore are brought on because of the deposit of oxalates. As a result, it is suggested that an individual struggling with kidney stones need to consume low doses of calcium as well as phosphorus.

Soak four teaspoons of horse gram in in roughly 1.5 cups of water over night and then consume the water before eating anything, very first thing the next day. Now add another 1.5 cups of water and keep it. Have this particular water in the afternoon. Repeat the pattern and consume the same water at night too. This particular exercise, if followed for approximately 2-3 months, can help totally eliminate kidney stones. The reason horse gram is so effective is really because it includes diuretic properties which will help break down kidney stones.

3. Common Cold and fever

Ayurveda acharyas suggest soup of horse gram in common cold, fever, bronchitis as well as asthma. It reduces congestion as well as makes breathing easy. It provides needed nutrition to enhance body immunity in fever and common cold.

4. Protects against diabetes

Unprocessed raw horse gram seeds consist of useful anti-hyperglycemic qualities which help in the decrease in insulin resistance. As a result, horse gram has become a suggested food for diabetics. A comparative research in between horse gram seeds as well as sprouts demonstrate that the seeds have benefits that will assist hyperglycemic individuals over the horse gram sprouts.

5. Horse Gram for Weight Loss

Consuming lots of Horse Gram works well for losing weight. One can possibly also make a paste of sour buttermilk as well as 100 gm powdered Horse Gram and put it on the main fat deposits of the body. It is essential to massage the paste in upward strokes since it efficiently decreases body fat.

6. Increase Sperm Counts

Horse gram consists of calcium, phosphorus, iron and amino acid that boosts sperm count. Horse gram sucked out of the dirt from your body.

  1. Antioxidant activity

It is a superfood which is rich in protein and antioxidants. Horse gram has high content of protein than other vegetables. As it is a slowly digestible starch, this food is helpful for diabetic patients as well as obese individuals. Horse gram helps to suppress appetite and also stabilize the level of blood sugar. Studies show that antioxidants help to prevent oxidative stress which is occurred when free radical damage destroys healthy cells. Add Horse gram to the diet to prevent body from oxidative stress. Horse gram is also an excellent source of phenolic acids and polyphenols. The plant based chemicals prevent from chronic diseases and cancer.

  1. Assist to lose weight

Horse gram has low content of calories and rich in protein and burns very slowly. It is packed with protein and fiber that makes it a great choice for those who wants to lose weight. An intake of horse gram will make one feel full for long time period. It also possesses fat burning abilities. Horse gram prevents cravings as it stabilizes the level of blood sugar. The low blood sugar will provoke intense cravings which could result in overeating and weight gain.

  1. Treatment for leucorrhea

Leucorrhea is the common and normal discharge from vagina. It could change in its consistency or color and is related with infection, pains and inflammation around cervix and vagina. It happens due to the irritation to lining of membrane and discharge could be foul smelling or thick with increase in quantity when puberty hits or when sexual arousal is at apex. Soak handful of Horse gram overnight in a water and boil it next day. Consume this water thrice a day for treating leucorrhea symptoms.

  1. Prevent constipation

Constipation is the problem in releasing bowels. Constipation is caused due to lack of intake of water lack of fiber in diet, lack of minerals, due to unhealthy lifestyle and stress. It occurs when intestines and stomach lining above duedoneum are not in a position to expand or contract normally for release of waste matter. Besides powerful nutrients, it contains abundant amounts of fiber which helps to counteract the problems of constipation. Presoak Horse gram and consume it as salad in raw form.

  1. Cure for diarrhea

Horse gram has high content of fiber which supports with digestion and also soaks up excess fluids from stomach and intestines. It brings down the chances of diarrhea and loose motion and normalizes the movements of bowel. Presoak horse gram and consume it early in the morning. This helps to stimulate digestive system.

  1. Skin problems

Prepare the face pack from Horse gram. Apply it topically for treating boils, rashes and skin disorders. It possesses antibacterial and antimicrobial properties along with antioxidants which help to nourish and replicate healthy lipid layers of skin. Crush the handful of seeds soaked overnight and apply it as face pack next day. Let it remain for half an hour and wash off with cold water. It exfoliates dirt, grime, dead skin cells and also boosts collagen production and also protects from free radical attacks.

Horse gram recipes

1. Horse gram soup aka Ulavacharu

Horse gram soup aka Ulavacharu






  • Horse gram : 1/2 cup
  • Tamarind paste : 2, 3 teaspoons
  • Pepper corn : 1 spoon
  • Cumin seeds : 1 spoon
  • Mustard seed : 1/2 spoon
  • Curry leaves : 1 sprig
  • Coriander leaves : 1 or 2 sprigs
  • Salt : to taste
  • Oil : 2 teaspoons


  1. Soak the horse gram seeds over night and pressure cook until soft.
  2. Drain the water and keep it aside for later use. (The water’s color will be chocolatey)
  3. Grind the dry roast mustard, cumin and pepper seeds to fine powder.
  4. Mash half of the cooked horse gram.
  5. Heat the oil in the pan and shallow fry the curry leaves.
  6. Add the tamarind paste, strained horse gram water, roasted powder, smashed horse gram and salt.
  7. Add sufficient water and ensure the gravy just isn’t too thick.
  8. Add the remaining horse gram and mix.
  9. Remove from flame.
  10. Sprinkle perfectly chopped coriander leaves within the gravy.
  11. Serve along with chapatti or steamed rice and enjoy!

2. Horse gram Sundal

Horse gram Sundal





Sundal is a well-liked roadside snack from South India (mainly Tamil Nadu). Boiled pulses stir fried along with simple spices and garnished along with fresh coconut, lemon juice and cilantro, it is loaded with fiber and low in calories.


  • 1 cup horse gram /kolotho/kollu
  • 1 large onion (chopped into medium-sized pieces)
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/4 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp urad dal
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 2-3 dry red chili
  • a pinch of asafoetida
  • a pinch of turmeric
  • 2 tsp oil
  • salt to taste
  • freshly grated coconut/ finely chopped cilantro for garnishing


  1. Cook it along with 2/3 cup water, a pinch of turmeric and salt to taste in a pressure cooker. Allow for 4-5 whistles. Take away from flame whilst keeping aside till steam escapes.
  2. Open the lid and strain the boiled lentils. Don’t throw the water as it could be utilized for making rasam.
  3. Cooking – Heat oil in the wok. Add some broken red chilis, urad dal, mustard seeds as well as cumin seeds. After the urad dal starts turning a little brown, add asafoetida, curry leaves and onion. Fry till onion becomes clear.
  4. Add the boiled lentils and stir fry for 2-3 mins. Adjust the salt if needed.
  5. Remove from the wok and garnish along with fresh coconut/cilantro. Serve as a healthy afternoon snack .

3. Horse Gram Masala Curry

Horse Gram Masala Curry






  • Horsegram (Muthira) – 2 cups(soaked overnight)
  • Onions – 2 nos(finely chopped)
  • Ginger -garlic paste – 1/2 tsp
  • Tomatoes – 2 nos(chopped)
  • Fennelseeds (Perinjeerakam) – 1/2 tsp
  • Coconut – 1 cup(grated)
  • Cloves (Grambu) – 3 nos
  • Cinnamon (Karugapatta) – 1 no
  • Chillypowder – 1 tsp
  • Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Coriander powder – 2 tsp
  • Coriander leaves – 3 springs (chopped)
  • Oil – As required
  • Salt – As required


  1. For preparing horse gram masala curry, heat oil in the pressure cooker as well as fry the onions till brown in color.
  2. Add in fennel seeds, cloves and cinnamon. Saute it well.
  3. Mean while blend the tomatoes and fry it combined with the onions.
  4. Add in turmeric powder, ginger-garlic paste, salt, chilly powder and coriander powder. Fry on low flame up until the oil separates.
  5. Toss in the horse gram as well as grated coconut along with required water. Pressure cook for till done.
  6. Garnish with coriander leaves.
  7. Horse gram masala curry is prepared. Serve hot with rice or chapatti.

4. Horsegram Chutney

Horsegram Chutney






  • Horsegram- 1 cup
  • Garlic glove-1
  • Coriander seeds- 1 tsp
  • Cuming seed- 1/2 tsp
  • curry leaves- few
  • Red chillies-3


  1. Boil horsegram in cooker for 3-4 whistle whilst keeping it aside
  2. Heat a pan add oil and fry coriander seeds, cuming seeds, red chillies, garlic and curry leaves
  3. Add horse gram dhal and salt
  4. Grind it coarsely
  5. Horsegram chutney goes well along with rice.

Traditional uses

  • Seeds help to lower post prandial hyperglycemia by slowing down digestion of carbohydrate and lower insulin resistance by inhibiting protein-tyrosine phosphatase 1 beta enzyme.
  • It is used for bronchitis, asthma, urinary discharge, leucoderma, heart diseases and kidney stones.
  • Horse gram is also useful for water retention and jaundice.
  • Horse gram helps to prevent worms, rheumatism, piles and conjunctivitis.
  • It is used to control fever, extract phlegm and normalize level of cholesterol.
  • It opens the blocked channels caused due to congestion and also eases breathing.
  • Horse gram is a cure for indigestion by lowering flatulence and eliminates intestinal parasites.
  • Horse gram is helpful for those women with irregular menses or scanty menses.
  • It helps to lower body fat and flatulence.
  • It is helpful for iron deficiencies and also used to keep body warm during winter season.
  • Apply powdered Horse gram by making a paste with water on skin to control skin rashes and boils.


  • Not to be consumed by the people with gastric ulcers and hyperacidity because it could worsen the situation.
  • The people having heavy period and nasal bleeding should also avoid it.
  • It should not be used by the men who are undergoing infertility treatment.
  • Horse gram could contradict effect of the anemia medicine.
  • Over consumption of Horse gram results in excessive bile production.
  • Tuberculosis and plethora patients should not use it.

How to Eat         

  • In India, it is consumed as a whole seed, whole meal or sprouts.
  • Stir fry, Kollu porial, Aka Kulith Usal, Kollu rasam and Kollu sambar are the popular recipes for Horse gram.
  • Soak the dried Horse gram and then use it for preparing.
  • Dal could be prepared from Horse gram.
  • Allow Horse gram to sprout and then use it for cooking.
  • In Maharashtra, Horse gram is used for making laddu and pithla.
  • It is a prominent food source in Himalayan region.
  • Prepare a dish by using Horse grams with tender coriander leaves, radish leaves, spinach and rai.
  • Horse gram is also used to make soups and curries.
  • These beans are consumed with roti and boiled rice.













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