Maida flour

Maida flour
Tandoor rotis made with maida - the flour covers the workspace in the foreground

Maida is a finely milled and refined flour of wheat, closely resembling cake flour, and used extensively in making Indian fast food and Indian bakery products such as pastries and bread[1]and sometimes in making traditional Indian breads such as paratha and naan. It is made from the endosperm (the starchy white part) of the grain, while the fibrous bran is removed in the mill. Originally yellowish in colour, maida is popular in a white texture bleached with Benzoyl Peroxide which is banned in the UK,[2] China,[3] and European Union[3].

Maida contains Alloxan, the source of which may be direct use as softener or the by-product of the bleaching agent Chlorine dioxide. Maida is often softened using Alloxan which is known to destroy beta cells in the pancreas of rodents and other species, causing Diabetes mellitus.[4][5][6]

The bleaching agent, Chlorine dioxide, used to bleach flour is reported to produce diabetes-causing contaminant alloxan when reacting with the proteins contained in flour.[7]

Studies show that alloxan, the chemical that makes white flour look "clean" and "beautiful," destroys the beta cells of the pancreas. [8]

Maida is also used in Central Asian and Southeast Asian cuisine.[9] Maida is used also as an adhesive [10] for wall posters in India.

Maida is finely milled flour and is usually refined using a fine mesh of 600 mesh per square inch. In south India where there are no wheat farms - flour from Tapioca is converted it into Maida, Rava,Vermicelli, Sabudhana/Javvarisi etc. This is generally cheaper than those made with wheat. Salem, Erode , Dharmapuri region is very famous for this industry called "Sago" manufacturing.[11]

Pastry flours available in United States may be used as a substitute for maida.[12]

Flour of whole wheat, which includes part of the brown outer layer known as bran, is often considered healthier than maida flour as it contains a higher level of dietary fibre (around 2-3g per 100g as opposed to 0.3g in maida flour).

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^ Flour Advisory Bureau. FAQ.
  3. ^ a b ChinaDaily. China bans two food additives in flour.
  4. ^ Alloxan diabetes
  5. ^ PlosOne Alloxan-Induced Diabetes Triggers the Development of Periodontal Disease in Rats
  6. ^ A. Mrozikiewicz, D. Kielstrokczewska-Mrozikiewicz, Z. Lstrokowicki, E. Chmara, K. Korzeniowska and P. M. Mrozikiewicz: Blood levels of alloxan in children with insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. Acta Diabetologica 31, 236-237, 1994 (Rapid report)
  7. ^ Lenzen, S: The mechanisms of alloxan- and streptozotocin-induced diabetes. Diabetologia 51, 216-226, 2008 (Review)
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^ Maida Substitutes - American Flours,

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