We’re big on whole grains around here. It’s not secret why – whole grains possess a whole variety of health benefits. Plus, they tend to digest slower than processed grains, thus allowing you to feel fuller for longer and potentially pass on a second helping at mealtime. The thing is, grains are a staple food – you’re probably going to be eating them either way. So why not opt for whole grains which will provide you with more nutrients and help you lose weight?
Still, whole grains can be a bit scary when you see them in big bags at the supermarket. So today we’re introducing you to barley, one of the best whole grains of them all.
Fiber in Barley
Barley may seem uncommon to you, but world-wide it’s the fourth most widely consumed grain. It’s also the highest in fiber. Barley usually comes in at about 17 percent fiber. By comparison, wheat is only about 12 percent fiber. All this fiber is helpful to proper digestion. But barley isn’t just a fiber vehicle – it’s also full of vitamins and antioxidants that can truly have an impact on your health.
Barley and Cholesterol
Barley’s been shown to lower LDL or “bad” cholesterol levels. Similar to all whole grains, it also reduces blood pressure. Barley has also been shown to be helpful for regulating blood sugar – diabetics take note. It’s also very high in protein, containing more than the amount found in brown rice, rye, millet and other healthy choices.
Although barley can take upwards of 50 minutes to cook properly, the good news is that it keeps well in the fridge. So the next time you’re in the supermarket, buy some barley, cook a large batch, put it in the fridge and see how many different ways you can incorporate it into meals. It may seem significantly different than rice or pasta, but you’ll find it can very often function in the same capacity.