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Whole Grain Pasta Nutrients

Barley vs. Wheat: What’s the Difference?



Wheat and barley have been cultivated by humans for thousands of years and were one of the first crops to be domesticated.

Today they are two of the most important crops in the world, used in food and beverage production and as animal feed.

They may look very similar on the surface, but they differ in terms of their processing and use, diet, and health effects.

This article will tell you everything you need to know about the key differences between the two grains.

Wheat and barley were first domesticated in the Middle East around 10,000 years ago and have been an important part of the diet for humans and cattle since then (1, 2, 3).

Both belong to the grass family (Poaceae), which also includes other crops such as rice, sugar cane and corn.

The grains are the fruits or caryopsis of the grass plant. These fruits are located on a “thorn” or “head” that is arranged in vertical rows, similar to a corn cob (2).

The grain consists of three layers.

The inner germ layer is the nutrient-rich core. Outside of this is the endosperm, which mainly contains carbohydrates and proteins that supply the germinal layer with energy. The outer layer is called bran, which is rich in fiber, B vitamins and trace elements.

Both grains have been cultivated in many different varieties and subspecies since their original domestication (4).

The most commonly grown type of wheat is bread wheat (Triticum aestivum). Other varieties are durum, einkorn, emmer and spelled (2, 4).

There are three common types of barley – two-row, six-row, and hullless. These three species are known under the botanical name Hordeum vulgare L (5).


Barley and wheat were some of the earliest domesticated crops. They both belong to the grass family, and the grain is actually the fruit of the grass, which is made up of an inner germ, an endosperm, and an outer bran layer.


Before wheat can be used, it must be ground. Milling refers to the process of breaking the grain to separate the bran and germ from the endosperm and to break the endosperm into a fine flour.

Whole wheat flour contains all parts of the grain, the germ, the endosperm and the bran, while normal ground flour contains only the endosperm.

The ground flour is used to make bread, biscuits, biscuits, pasta, noodles, semolina, bulgur, couscous, and breakfast cereals (6).

Wheat can be fermented into biofuels, beer, and other alcoholic beverages. It is also used in smaller quantities for fodder (6).


Barley does not need to be ground before use, but it is usually peeled to remove the outermost layer.

Peeled barley is a whole grain because bran, endosperm and germs remain intact. Barley is often pearled for food purposes. Both the shell and the bran are removed so that only the germ and endosperm layers (5) remain.

Although barley has historically been an important source of food in many parts of the world, it has been largely replaced by other grains such as wheat and rice over the past 200 years (5).

Today barley is mainly used as animal feed or malted for use in alcoholic beverages such as beer. However, a small amount of barley is also used as a source of food for humans (5, 7).

Both peeled and pearly gray barley can be cooked similar to rice and is often used in soups and stews. They’re also found in breakfast cereals, porridge, and baby foods (5).

Barley can also be made into flour by grinding the pearl grain. The flour is often used with other wheat-based products like bread, pasta, and baked goods to improve their nutritional profile (5, 8).


Wheat is ground into flour so it can be used in baked goods such as bread. Barley is mainly used as fodder and in alcohol production, but it can also be cooked or ground into flour in a similar way to rice.

The nutritional composition of barley and wheat differs depending on the processing effort of each grain.

Wheat flour usually only contains the endosperm component, while whole wheat flour contains all parts of the grain.

Barley, which is used in cooking, generally comes in peeled form, with all parts of the grain intact. It can also come as pearl barley with the bran removed.


For example, 100 grams of wholemeal flour, refined wheat flour, peeled barley and pearl barley compare in terms of their macronutrient content (9, 10, 11, 12):

It is clear that wheat and barley are quite similar in terms of calories, carbohydrates, protein, and fat, even after undergoing processing such as milling or peeling.

However, wheat loses significant amounts of fiber when it is ground, as most of the fiber is in the bran layer of the grain. With wholemeal flour, the bran is added back to the end product, which increases the fiber content.

Barley, on the other hand, is very high in fiber, providing 60-70% of the American Heart Association’s recommended 25 grams (13).

Because the fiber is distributed throughout the grain, not just the bran, even if the bran layer is removed from pearl barley, there will still be a significant amount of fiber left over.


For example, 100 grams of wholemeal flour, refined wheat flour, peeled barley and pearl barley compare in terms of their mineral content (9, 10, 11, 12):

Wheat and barley are rich in minerals. However, both lose significant amounts in processing, especially when grinding refined wheat flour. Iron is usually added back into ground wheat flour to match that of the whole grain product.

Wheat is particularly rich in manganese, and whole wheat flour and peeled barley have similar amounts of zinc, iron, magnesium, and potassium.

That said, both peeled and pearly barley are better sources of all minerals than refined wheat flour.


This is how 100 grams of whole wheat flour, refined wheat flour, peeled barley and pearl barley compare their vitamin content (9, 10, 11, 12):

Peeled barley is richer in thiamine and riboflavin than wheat. Conversely, wheat is slightly richer in niacin, vitamin B6, vitamin B5, folic acid and vitamin E.

However, grinding wheat into refined flour results in significant losses of all vitamins, and pearl barley results in significant loss of thiamine, riboflavin, and vitamin E. Thiamine and riboflavin, as well as other B vitamins, are usually added back to refined flour after milling.


Wheat and barley are very nutritious. But wheat milled into refined flour loses a significant amount of fiber, minerals, and certain vitamins. Pearl barley also loses its nutritional value. B vitamins are added back to refined flours before processing.

Barley and wheat share some common health effects, as well as some important differences, including effects on conditions like celiac disease, wheat allergy, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and metabolic syndrome

Celiac disease and gluten sensitivity without celiac disease

People with an autoimmune disease known as celiac disease cannot tolerate proteins called gluten because they damage the lining of the gut, which can lead to gas, iron deficiency, constipation, diarrhea, weight loss, and even failure to thrive (14).

In addition, some people without celiac disease may experience symptoms such as gas, gas, and pain when they eat foods containing gluten (15, 16, 17).

Barley and wheat both contain gluten proteins. Wheat contains glutenins and gliadins, while barley contains hordeins (18).

Therefore, people who cannot tolerate gluten should avoid both wheat and barley.

Wheat allergy

Wheat allergy is an immune response to various proteins in wheat, some of which are shared by barley (18, 19).

Allergic reactions include mild symptoms such as redness, itching, and diarrhea, and more severe symptoms such as asthma and anaphylaxis (19).

Although they share some similar proteins, many people with a wheat allergy are not allergic to barley. In fact, barley allergy is relatively rare and not well studied (20, 21, 22).

However, if you have a wheat allergy, it is best to speak to your doctor if you have any concerns about possible reactions to barley (18).

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)

Both barley and wheat contain sugars known as fructans and galactooligosaccharides (GOS) (23).

Fructans are chains of linked fructose sugars that are commonly found in fruits and vegetables. GOS are chains of galactose sugars.

None of these sugars are broken down during digestion, so they make their way to the colon, where they are fermented by naturally occurring bacteria and produce gas (23, 24).

For most people, this does not have any negative effects. Nevertheless, bloating, stomach upset, diarrhea, or constipation can occur in people with irritable bowel syndrome (23, 25).

Therefore, if you experience IBS symptoms, it may be beneficial to limit the amount of wheat and barley you eat (26).

Barley, cholesterol and blood sugar

A big advantage of barley over wheat is that it contains high amounts of the fiber beta-glucan.

In fact, barley contains around 5-11% beta-glucan compared to wheat which contains around 1%. Pearled Parley offers even more, as beta-glucan is particularly concentrated in the endosperm layer of the grain (5, 8).

Beta-glucan has been found to help lower cholesterol and improve blood sugar control (5, 27).

For example, a review of 34 studies found that consuming at least 4 grams of beta-glucan per day in addition to 30–80 grams of carbohydrates significantly lowered blood sugar levels (28).

In addition, a review of 58 studies found that 3.5 grams of beta-glucan per day significantly lowered LDL (bad) cholesterol compared to controls (29).

Hence, barley may have some additional health benefits compared to wheat.


Barley and wheat are unsuitable for people with gluten intolerance. They can also cause problems in people with IBS. However, many people with wheat allergies can tolerate barley. Barley can help improve cholesterol and blood sugar levels.

Barley and wheat are both important domesticated plants that belong to the grass family.

Wheat is ground into flour before being used in baked goods and other foods, while barley is mostly consumed in whole grain or pearl form.

Both contain gluten, which makes them unsuitable for people with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity.

While both grains are nutritious, barley is richer in fiber and cholesterol-lowering beta-glucan, and loses fewer nutrients when processed than wheat. However, important nutrients are added back to the wheat flour that is ground before it is used to make pasta, cereal and bread.

Whole Grain Pasta Nutrients

Is Whole Wheat Actually Better Than White Bread or Pasta?



Multigrain is a brilliant approach to selling both white bread and fairness. The term has quietly crept under the umbrella of health. It wasn’t clear exactly why. (The grain part? Or the multi?) At least it wasn’t white bread, was it?

When many bread eaters understood that white bread is a nutritional equivalent of Pixy Stix – the nutritious, fibrous husk of the wheat has been removed and we are left with only the inner strength that our bodies convert to sugar almost instantly – it took some renaming.

Multigrain is often used today to imply wholesomeness, a virtue to which it is often not entitled. Having the multiple grains in flour doesn’t mean they contain whole grains. If millers leave the grain intact before grinding, it is whole wheat flour. It contains fiber, which soothes the pancreas and the microbes that need it for optimal performance. So the term we are looking for is 100 percent whole grain. (Or whole grains, although the grain is usually wheat.)

It’s a valuable piece of health knowledge, especially given the results of an extensive analysis published today by the Harvard School of Public Health: Eating at least three servings of whole grains a day is associated with a lower risk of dying from cancer. Heart disease and stroke.

This is especially relevant at a time when many people needlessly skip gluten or simply think that carbohydrates are bad.

“There are still some misconceptions about the role of carbohydrates in a healthy diet,” said Frank Hu, Professor of Epidemiology and Nutrition at Harvard and one of the study’s authors. “Some people still believe that all carbohydrates are bad, and some people still promote very low-carb diets without strong scientific support.”

Hu sees this study as further evidence that the type of carbohydrate is “very important”.

Lauren Giordano / The Atlantic

The new Harvard study, published in the American Heart Association’s journal Circulation, is an analysis of 12 previous studies as well as previously unpublished results from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. The combined studies involved 786,076 people and a total of 97,867 deaths.

This is a correlation, an epidemiological study – so predictably, people on Facebook timelines and comment threads will be screaming that correlation is not causation. The allegation, while true, is out of place. Epidemiology is perhaps the most important type of research available to us to understand the role of food in chronic disease.

In many areas of science, the gold standard approach is a randomized controlled trial. This works very well, for example, when drugs are tested for short-term effectiveness and side effects. However, the effects of our food are usually too far-reaching to be used in the same studies. Chronic diseases (as the name suggests) do not manifest themselves over weeks or months, but over decades – longer than most research institutes can keep thousands of subjects on a particular diet. And longer than most people would be willing to participate.

(Would you please help us by just using white bread for the rest of your life and see what diseases you get or not? In fact, wait, you can’t know it’s white bread or it is ruining the experiment. Wear this one always dark sunglasses? and let’s cauterize your tongue?)

Therefore, knowing that long-lived, healthy people tend to eat lots of whole grains is reliable and worthwhile.

However, the study made no distinction between ground grains and whole grains, which tend to be eaten whole – quinoa, farro, amaranth, and the like. I asked Hu what was going on.

“That’s a really good question,” he said. “We don’t have enough data to solve the problem.” But like any good scientist, he was ready to speculate: “When whole grains are ground and turned into whole grain flour, the digestive and absorption process is still fast. And that can lead to higher insulin responses. In theory, this type of product is less beneficial than whole grain products, which are only minimally processed or not processed at all. “

These insulin responses correspond to a measure known as the glycemic index, essentially the rate at which glucose enters our bloodstream when we eat. Pixy Stix are high and broccoli is low. It is known that eating many foods with high glycemic indexes has been linked to diabetes, obesity, heart disease, and even liver damage. (A recent randomized clinical trial in JAMA in 2014 suggested otherwise, but that study only lasted five weeks.) It’s not a perfect metric, but an interesting one.

In this case, it is relevant because white wonder bread and whole wheat bread have the same glycemic index. According to the Harvard website, they are identical. Both are high (even higher than Coca Cola). Ever since I first saw this a few years ago, I’ve been wondering why – and what, whole wheat pasta would make healthier than white pasta, if not a muted sugar spike. (Because I love them both and I want to feel good eating both of them.)

Hu clarified that the glycemic index “mainly depends on the particle size of the food. So when whole grain is ground, the particles are similar in size to those of white flour. “

It can even depend on the structure of the final product. Furio Brighenti, professor of nutrition at the University of Parma in Italy, has – perhaps predictably – studied pasta in great detail. He explained to me how the structure of food affects the absorption of starch in sugar, which he has observed through studies on different types of pasta. Although they are made of the same material, we record them differently.

Based on Wolevar et al., “Glycemic Response to Pasta” Diabetes Care (Lauren Giordano / The Atlantic)

The total surface area of ​​the meal (after chewing) can partly explain the differences in how the body reacts to different pasta, explains Brighenti. Only the thickness of the pasta is variable. According to his results, thicker penne has a lower glycemic index than thinner ones.

Lauren Giordano / The Atlantic

Pastas that are left al dente (really the only way to cook pasta) also have lower indices than those that are left to a pulp like so much canteen nonsense.

He highlights the complexity by graphing for me that different shapes of pasta tend to be eaten with different amounts of oils and sauces, and this changes the way the body ingests food – not just the glycemic index but also the speed at which the stomach empties. However, he cannot explain why whole wheat pasta has a glycemic index similar to that of white pasta.

“The glycemic index is just one of the factors that go into the quality of a high-carbohydrate food,” says Hu. “The amount of fiber, minerals, antioxidants and phytochemicals is also very important. In fact, the whole is more than the sum of its parts. “

This is a basic tenet of dietary wisdom. The grain is a microcosm. Take exactly the same flour and make it into pasta or bread, and it works differently in us:

According to Giacco et al., British Journal of Nutrition (Lauren Giordano / The Atlantic)

The variables are many, but the realization is not complex: eat whole grains instead of their starchy white endosperm whenever possible, and a person’s chances of health will increase. Hu and all the other scientists I have spoken to on this subject are convinced of this. This has been true for a long time. A very similar, large, meta-analysis will appear in another major medical journal later this week, and its results are similar. However, it is usually the studies that reverse convention that make the headlines, so these studies cannot do that.

What makes diet confusing isn’t the science, it’s the news cycle, the diet books warning about gluten and carbohydrates, and the marketing of meaningless things like multigrain bread. If someone asks if you want white bread or multigrain bread, suggest that they harm the health of the public by maintaining a false dichotomy. Or simply “multigrain here”.

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Whole Grain Pasta Nutrients

Popular Frozen Foods That Help You Lose Weight, Say Dietitians



Filling your freezer with healthy foods is one of the smartest strategies you can use when trying to shed a few pounds. Think of it this way: when you have frozen products and lean protein with you, you have a convenient, nutritious meal option – meaning you are less likely to resort to those processed snacks or high-calorie take-away items.

The best, Most foods do not lose any of their nutritional value when frozen, So you can be sure that your body is taking advantage of these vitamins, minerals, and other important nutrients.

Nonetheless, not all frozen foods are created equal – at least from a health perspective. While some products can help you lose weight, others can do just the opposite thanks to high levels of fat and sodium. So if you’re looking to lose weight, we recommend adding a handful of popular frozen food dieters to your shopping list.


When in need of a simple weekday dinner after a long day at work, it’s hard to beat a veggie burger. Many of them are crammed with high-fiber vegetables and whole grains, and some even have a protein content comparable to that of meat. That means you’ll feel full for hours, says Melissa Mitri, RD for Wellness Verge.

“They usually only have 150 calories or less, which makes them a solid choice for a weight loss plan,” says Mitri. “Also, research shows that consuming more plant-based foods can aid weight loss and overall health.”

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frozen edamameShutterstock

Frozen edamame serves as a phenomenal afternoon snack or as a high-fiber addition to stir-fries, grain bowls, and salads. And at around 17 grams of protein per cup, it’s one of the most filling plant-based snacks around. This is what Gabbie Ricky, MS, RDN strongly recommends keeping some edamame in your freezer. Did we mention that research shows that eating a high protein diet helps control your appetite and aid in sustained weight loss?

frozen spinachShutterstock

With little to no fat and high in fiber, it’s no wonder why spinach is a popular weight loss food. Fresh spinach can wilt in the refrigerator after just a few days, which is why it is worth buying it frozen – so you always have something to hand for side dishes, casseroles and more.

“Frozen spinach can be easily added to a variety of dishes including pastas, smoothies, and soups,” says Holly Klamer, MS, a registered nutritionist with MyCrohn’sandColitisTeam.

A 2015 study in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition found that obese adults adding 5 grams of spinach extract to their meal reduced their appetite and craving for food for several hours. Another 2014 study in Appetite found that consuming 5 grams of spinach extract daily resulted in 43% greater weight loss than a placebo. This effect can likely be attributed to the thylakoids – plant membranes associated with a greater feeling of satiety because they delay fat digestion.

In other words, spinach can help you eat less by suppressing your appetite, which can lead to weight loss in the long run. Here’s an important effect of eating spinach, science says.

greek yoghurt barsShutterstock

When your sweet tooth strikes, you definitely want to have a box of these creamy goodies in your freezer, says Sarah Williams, MS, RD, Founder of Sweet Balance Nutrition.

“Greek frozen yogurt bars are a great low-calorie dessert option for weight loss,” she explains. “When people try to lose weight, they often avoid sweets altogether – which usually leads to burnout. Instead, add small treats regularly to keep them from feeling deprived during weight loss. “

As an added bonus, since they’re made from yogurt, these frozen treats often come with a healthy dose of protein and bowel-boosting probiotics.

frozen berriesShutterstock

Storing berries in the freezer is a good idea, according to Ricky, as you can add them to smoothies and baked goods without even having to defrost them.

Berries contain less sugar than many other fruits and are remarkably high in fiber. That might help explain why a 2015 study in Appetite found that people who were given a 65-calorie berry snack ate less food on a subsequent meal than those who were given candies of the same calorie content.


“Frozen shrimp are a low-calorie, high-protein food that can help keep you feeling full long after you’ve eaten,” says Klamer.

In fact, just a 3-ounce serving of shrimp has a whopping 12 grams of protein and only 60 calories.

Try baking, sautéing, or air-frying frozen shrimp and adding them to tacos, salad, and pasta for a more persistent meal.

frozen salmonShutterstock

When it comes to seafood, Mitri says salmon is a nutritional powerhouse that is not only high in protein, but also rich in heart-healthy omega-3 fats. Omega-3 fats can have anti-inflammatory effects in the body and were shown to have potential anti-obesity effects in a 2010 nutritional study.

Whether you’re baking, roasting, or grilling, frozen salmon fillets can make for a super-filling salad topper or an appetizer for dinner. Pro tip: sub-salmon for beef for a healthier homemade burger.

Cauliflower riceShutterstock

Cauliflower “rice” has just 29 calories and 4.7 grams of carbohydrates per 100-gram serving, making it an excellent rice swap for weight loss.

“You can easily add cauliflower rice to stews, casseroles, and even as a substitute for traditional rice in any dish you would normally serve,” says Trista Best, RD at Balance One Supplements. “Frozen cauliflower rice is probably the most versatile and convenient of them all. It cooks in minutes and provides almost as many nutrients as its fresh counterpart.”

If you’re struggling to get used to the idea of ​​cauliflower rice, Ricky suggests replacing half of your traditional rice with this low-carb alternative.

For even more weight loss tips, read these next:

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Whole Grain Pasta Nutrients

Adults who consume the most dairy fat are less likely to develop heart disease, study finds



One study suggests that adults who eat a dairy-rich diet are up to 25 percent less likely to develop heart disease.

Previous research has generally gone the other way, linking dairy products to heart problems because things like milk and cheese are high in cholesterol and fat.

But the latest Australian study suggests that the other nutrients in dairy products have protective effects on the heart and help it function normally.

They said people should stick to dairy products, which have fewer additives and are not sweetened or salted.

Heart and circulatory diseases are responsible for around 160,000 deaths a year in the UK while they are responsible for 655,000 deaths in the US.

However, the study’s experts claimed that the type of dairy product consumed, rather than the fat content, could be responsible for the heart problems

Co-lead author Dr. Matti Marklund of the George Institute for Global Health in Australia said it was important to eat dairy products.

“While some dietary guidelines continue to suggest consumers choose low-fat dairy products, others have moved away from that recommendation.

“Instead, it can be suggested that dairy products can be part of a healthy diet, with an emphasis on choosing certain dairy products – for example yogurt instead of butter – or avoiding sweetened dairy products with added sugar.”

What should a balanced diet look like?

Meals should be based on potatoes, bread, rice, pasta or other starchy carbohydrates, ideally whole grains, according to the NHS

• Eat at least 5 servings of different types of fruit and vegetables every day. Count all fresh, frozen, dried, and canned fruits and vegetables

• Basic meals based on potatoes, bread, rice, pasta or other starchy carbohydrates, ideally whole grains

• 30 grams of fiber per day: This corresponds to the consumption of everything: 5 servings of fruit and vegetables, 2 wholemeal cereal biscuits, 2 thick slices of wholemeal bread and a large baked potato with the skin on

• Have some dairy products or milk alternatives (such as soy drinks) and choose low-fat and low-sugar options

• Eat beans, legumes, fish, eggs, meat, and other proteins (including 2 servings of fish per week, one of which should be oily)

• Choose unsaturated oils and spreads and consume them in small amounts

• Drink 6-8 cups / glasses of water daily

• Adults should consume less than 6 g salt and 20 g saturated fat for women or 30 g for men per day

Source: NHS Eatwell Guide

He added, “Although the results can be influenced in part by factors other than milk fat, our study does not suggest harm from milk fat per se.”

In the study – published today in the journal Plos Medicine – researchers tested the blood of 4,000 people in their 60s from Sweden.

They followed participants for 16 years and recorded the number of cardiovascular events and deaths that occurred.

The results were compared with another 17 similar studies involving 43,000 people from the US, Denmark and the UK to confirm their results.

The data showed that people who ate more milk fat in their diet had 25 percent fewer heart problems than those who ate less dairy products.

The study did not record what type of dairy product each participant consumed.

The lead study author Dr. Kathy Trieu of the George Institute of Global Health Australia said it was important to only eat healthy dairy products.

She said, “Growing evidence suggests that the health effects of dairy products are type – like cheese, yogurt, milk and butter – rather than fat, raising doubts as to whether milk fat avoidance is beneficial for those overall cardiovascular health. ‘

Professor Ian Givens, a food chain nutrition expert at Reading University who was not involved in the study, said the results were largely in line with previous publications.

He told Science Media Center, “This study used fatty acid biomarkers to specifically target milk fat because it is high in saturated fat, which is widely believed to increase the risk of coronary artery disease.

“As the authors say, there is growing evidence that the health effects of dairy products depend on the type of food.

“There is perhaps the most evidence for hard cheese, where a number of studies show that the physical and chemical dietary matrix reduces the amount of fat the body absorbs, resulting in moderate or no increases in blood lipids, risk factors for cardiovascular disease are.”

Several studies have shown that consuming more dairy products may be linked to improved heart health.

Researchers have pointed to the high nutritional content in dairy products to explain this boost to the cardiovascular system.

They are an important source of vitamin B12, which is used to build red blood cells and keep the nervous system healthy.

They also contain potassium, which plays a vital role in maintaining nerve and muscle health.

But many dairy products have already earned a bad rap for their high saturated fat content, which has been linked to heart disease.

A British Heart Foundation spokesman previously said: “Dairy products do not need to be excluded from the diet to prevent cardiovascular disease and are already part of the eatwell guide, which forms the basis of our recommendations for healthy eating in the UK.”

They added, “It is currently recommended to choose low-fat dairy products as our total saturated fat intake is above recommendations.”

Other studies have also suggested a link between increased consumption of dairy products and better heart health.

The UK produces more than 16 billion liters of milk each year, nearly 7 billion of which are consumed by consumers.

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