In Navratri diet Samak Chaval is a good replacement for rice eaters. It is not a cereal but a fruit. It is the seed of a grass (Echinochloa Colonum) which frequently grows amongst the rice paddy. In fact it can be eaten in every spiritual fast.  It is also called as Samo rice, Samak rice, Varyacha tandul, Vari TandulBhagaror Kodri, jungle rice. It provides the nourishment and energy that rice does.

It contains 169 Calories per 174 g. it is high in digestible fiber. It is similar to rice in taste and texture. It has a rich source of minerals and vitamins, providing essential ingredients.

In classical India fast it is prohibited to eat rice and hence it becomes the healthy replacement of rice.

India is going through an epidemic of metabolic syndrome, a disease due to eating a lot of refined carbohydrates and manifests as insulin over production, insulin resistance, pot belly obesity, hypertension and diabetes.

Wheat and rice are rich in refined carbohydrates. It is said that one should observe cereal fast 80 days in a year and on that day one should not eat wheat flour, rice and sugar. In traditional fast diet one can replace wheat flour with kuttu and singhara flour; pulses or dal with rajgiri or cholai and rice with Samak chaval. All are fruits in origin and good for heart.

Even diabetic patients can eat Samak Chaval. One will loose the benefits if it is cooked in hydrogenated Vanaspati oil.