Reference Number: 321
This study investigated whether the consumption of a diet in which high-beta-glucan barley replaced rice would reduce the visceral fat area as well as the serum low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) and total cholesterol (TC) in hypercholesterolemic Japanese men. A randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled intervention study was conducted in 44 hypercholesterolemic Japanese men with a body mass index (BMI) >22 kg/m2. The subjects were randomly assigned to groups consuming either rice (placebo group) or a mixture of rice and pearl barley with a high beta-glucan content (test group, 7.0 g beta-glucan per day) for 12 weeks. Blood samples were taken, and CT scan obtained before the trial and every four weeks during the trial. The pearl barley intake significantly reduced serum concentrations of LDL-C (P = 0.041) and TC (P = 0.037) during the trial. Significant differences between the test and placebo groups were found for the visceral fat (P = 0.039), BMI (P = 0.015), and waist circumference (P = 0.011) at the end point. The consumption of pearl barley with a high beta-glucan content reduces not only LDL-C but also visceral fat area.
What does this mean for a Baker?
This is a very interesting study which highlights the effects of consuming pearl barley on both fat and cholesterol levels. While this study has limited applications for bakers, it helps to show that eating more pearl barley, which is high in beta-glucans, may help to reduce cholesterol and fat levels. Why not try incorporating more pearl barley into your cooking?