- What other names is Barley known by?
- What is Barley?
- How does Barley work?
- Are there safety concerns?
- Are there any interactions with medications?
- Dosing considerations for Barley.
Barley is used for lowering blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol, and for promoting weight loss. It is also used for digestive complaints including diarrhea, stomach pain, and inflammatory bowel conditions.
Some people use barley for increasing strength and endurance. Other uses include cancer prevention and treatment of a lung problem called bronchitis.
Barley is applied to the skin for treating boils.
In foods, barley is used as a source of vitamins, carbohydrates, proteins, and fatty oils.
In manufacturing, barley is used as a food grain, natural sweetener, and as an ingredient for brewing beer and making alcoholic beverages.
Likely Effective for...
- High cholesterol. Research shows that taking barley reduces total cholesterol and "bad" low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. The benefit might depend on the amount taken. Taking 0.4, 3, or 6 grams of soluble fiber from barley daily reduces total cholesterol by 14%, 17%, and 20% respectively. LDL is lowered by 17% to 24%. Barley also seems to lower another group of blood fats called triglycerides by 6% to 16% and increase "good" high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol by 9% to 18%.
Taking barley orally also seems to reduce blood pressure in people with high cholesterol.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) now allows a health claim for food products containing barley. A food product containing 0.75 grams of soluble fiber from barley per serving can claim that, when used as part of a diet that is low in saturated fat and cholesterol, the product may reduce the risk of heart disease.
Possibly Effective for...
- Stomach cancer. Some evidence suggests that eating dietary fiber, including barley, is linked with a reduced risk of stomach cancer.
Possibly Ineffective for...
- Colorectal cancer. Eating dietary cereal fiber, including barley fiber, does not seem to reduce the risk of developing colorectal cancer.
Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...
- Inflammatory bowel disease (ulcerative colitis). Early research suggests that eating food containing germinated barley daily for 4-24 weeks appears to reduce the symptoms of a type of inflammatory bowel disease called ulcerative colitis.
- Increasing strength and energy.
- Weight loss.
- Other conditions.
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate (detailed description of each of the ratings).
Next: How does Barley work?
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