Why Barley is good for you?
Barley and other whole grain foods have rapidly been gaining popularity over the past few years due to the various health benefits they can offer. Whole grains are important sources of dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals that are not found in refined or "enriched" grains.
A very high fiber content, vitamins and minerals, antioxidants, heart health and diabetes protection are just some of the barley nutrition benefits that make it one of the best whole grain choices.
- Consuming barley might have benefits for the heart, blood pressure, and bones
- Barley may be useful in maintaining a healthy weight
- Barley provides a high percentage of an individual's daily requirement of manganese and selenium
- Thanks to barley's versatility, it is easy to incorporate into meals
1) Blood pressure
Barley has all the essential vitamins and minerals, particularly beta-glucan soluble fiber that slows down glucose absorption. The December 2006 edition of Nutrition Research proved that insulin-resistant men who consumed barley beta-glucan soluble fiber had significantly reduced glucose and insulin levels as compared to other test subjects.
2) Bone health
The iron, phosphorous, calcium, magnesium, manganese, and zinc in barley all contribute to building and maintaining bone structure and strength.
A careful balance of phosphate and calcium is necessary for proper bone mineralization. Bone formation requires the mineral manganese; also, iron and zinc play important roles in the production and maturation of collagen.
3) Heart health
Barley's fiber, potassium, folate, and vitamin B6 content, coupled with its lack of cholesterol, all support a healthy heart. Barley is an excellent source of fiber, which helps lower the total amount of cholesterol in the blood, thereby decreasing the risk of heart disease.
In 2007, researchers found that barley intake significantly reduced serum cholesterol and visceral fat, both of which are markers of cardiovascular risk.
The beta glucan fiber found in barley lowers LDL ("bad") cholesterol by binding to bile acids and removing them from the body via excretion. An intake of 3 grams of beta-glucans per day can lower blood cholesterol levels by 5 percent.
On the other hand, Vitamin B6 and folate, both present in barley, prevent the buildup of a compound known as homocysteine. When excessive amounts of homocysteine accumulate in the body, it can damage blood vessels and lead to heart problems.
4) Boosting Immunity
Being highly nutritious, barley is particularly helpful as it strengthens your immune system and reduces the chances of cold and flu. Iron improves the blood volume and prevents anemia and fatigue. It aids in proper kidney functioning and the development of body cells. Furthermore, it contains copper, which forms hemoglobin and red blood cells.
Choline is an important and versatile nutrient in barley that helps with sleep, muscle movement, learning, and memory.
Choline also helps to maintain the structure of cellular membranes, aids in the transmission of nerve impulses, assists in the absorption of fat, and reduces chronic inflammation.
6) Digestion and regularity
Barley's fiber content helps prevent constipation and promote regularity for a healthy digestive tract.
7) Weight management and satiety
The fiber contained in barley is essential for a fat-burning diet. As mentioned before, fiber helps to create bulky stools which then speeds up the elimination process of wastes and toxins in the body. In addition to that, foods containing fiber make you feel full and satisfied for extended periods you. This enables you to cut back on consumption now, and also prevents overeating. Therefore, the fiber found in barley will curb your craving for food, which will help you to burn off more calories and thus weight.
8) Skin Care
Barley is a good source of selenium, which helps preserve skin elasticity, thereby protecting it against free radical damage and loosening. Moreover, it also improves our heart, pancreas, and immune system functioning. A deficiency of selenium can lead to cancers of the skin, colon, prostate, liver, stomach, and breast.
9) Prevents Asthma
Barley is a key allergen in baker’s asthma condition and also a barley endosperm protein. Baker’s asthma is an airborne disease, normally prevalent in bakeries and confectioneries. It acts as quite an effective preemptive method for such types of main wheat-flour allergens.
10) Beneficial during Pregnancy
Barley is a powerhouse of essential nutrients, antioxidants, and fiber. Drinking barley water every day can help promote better digestion and ease morning sickness. Furthermore, it can help control blood sugar levels, thus preventing the risk of gestational diabetes.