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Health Benefits of Barley

By Madhusudhan Tammisetti

Although barley isn't as well known as other grains such as oats, quinoa, or wheat, it has many health benefits. Barley's nutritional advantages include fiber rich content, a variety of minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, heart health, and diabetes prevention.

Barley is full of nutrients with a deep nutlike taste and a chewy, pasta-like texture. Even though it's a bit light in color, it resembles wheat berries. Also, it's an excellent source of dietary fiber, tryptophan, selenium, niacin, manganese, phosphorus, and copper. It's a low-calorie meal with 270 calories per cup. It's also one of the world's oldest eaten grains. Barley was a primary food grain for peasants for centuries throughout the middle ages. It's still has a place in the diet of several African and Middle Eastern countries that have consumed barley for millennia.

Barley improves digestion, aids weight reduction, protects against gallstones, supports the skin, prevents asthma, boosts immunity, and is useful during pregnancy.

Prevents Asthma

Barley is a major allergen in baker's asthma and a barley endosperm protein. Baker's asthma is a kind of asthma that is often seen in bakeries and confectioneries. It works well as a preventative measure for common wheat flour allergies.

Control Diabetes

It successfully aids in the management of type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes may be avoided by decreasing weight by either physical exercise or eating a diet rich in whole grains. Barley is a high-fiber grain that also contains all of the important vitamins and minerals, including beta-glucan soluble fiber, which slows glucose absorption.


Selenium, found in barley, helps maintain skin suppleness, protecting it from free radical damage and loosening. It may help improve the functioning of the pancreas, immune system, and heart. Liver, prostate, skin, stomach, and breast cancer may all be caused due to selenium deficiency.

Supports Weight Loss

Adding barley's fiber content in diets may help in burning fat. Fiber aids in the formation of bulky stools that aids in the removal of toxins and wastes from the body. Also, fiber-rich foods may help you feel fuller for longer periods. This allows you to reduce your intake while also preventing overeating. As a result, the fiber present in barley may reduce your appetite, allowing you to lose more calories that in-turn help in weight loss.

Rich in Antioxidants

Lignans are antioxidant phytonutrients found in barley. Because lignans help reduce inflammation and counteract the effects of aging on the body, they may lower the chances of getting cancer and heart disease. 7-hydroxymatairesinol is the most common type of lignin found in the body. This lignan may help protect the body from the risk of getting cancer and heart disease as the body digest bacteria and maintains the ideal good-to-bad bacteria ratio in the gut, lowering overall inflammation.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Fitchburg, Wis.

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