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Facts on Duga (Hulless) Barley

As cereal grains go, Duga barley is a winner when it comes to good nutrition. This centuries-old grain is packed with fiber, contains important vitamins and minerals, is low in fat, and, like all plant products, cholesterol-free.


Barley is a great source of dietary fiber and actually contains both soluble and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber is effective in lowering blood cholesterol and can reduce the risk of heart disease.

It is also beneficial in slowing the absorption of sugar and potentially reducing the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. The insoluble fiber found in barley may be beneficial in helping the body maintain regular bowel function. Insoluble fiber may also help lower the risk for certain cancers such as colon cancer.

Cholesterol and Fat

Like all plant foods, barley is naturally cholesterol-free and low in fat. A 1/2-cup serving of cooked pearl barley, a typical grain serving, contains less than 1/2 gram of fat and only 100 calories.

*Source: USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, 27

Vitamins and Minerals

Barley contains several vitamins and minerals including niacin, thiamine, selenium, iron, magnesium, zinc, phosphorus and copper.


Barley contains antioxidants, which are also important for maintaining good health. Specifically, antioxidants work to slow down the rate of oxidative damage by gathering up free radicals that form when body cells use oxygen.


Barley contains phytochemicals, which are natural plant-based chemicals. Studies indicate that phytochemicals may help decrease the risk for certain diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and cancer.


Is barley a good fiber choice?

Barley is an excellent choice when it comes to adding both soluble and insoluble fiber to the diet. Our favorite grain compares favorably to other grains in total dietary fiber content. For example, a 1/2-cup serving of cooked pearl barley contains 3 grams of total dietary fiber. In comparison, a 1/2-cup serving of cooked long-grain brown rice contains 1.75 grams dietary fiber. A 1/2 -cup serving of cooked white medium-grain rice contains less than 1 gram of dietary fiber.

Food Qualities:

Light color grain with excellent nutritional and food qualities:

Whole grain Hulless Barley (14-16% protein, 2-3% crude fat, 8-10% insoluble fiber, 8-10% soluble fiber, 55-60% starch) contains 2-3 times the soluble fiber (SF) found in oat grains. The high quality SF reduces dangerous low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol while maintaining the useful HDL cholesterol. Thus not only is total cholesterol reduced but the all-important HDL/LDL ratio is improved.

The cholesterol reducing compound D-alpha-tocotrienol (one form of Vitamin E) is found in the germ and aleurone. 20 ppm can reduce cholesterol by 15 per cent in three weeks. Hulless Barley flour averages 50 ppm.

Hulless barley is unique. It is the only cereal grain which contains high levels of cholesterol reducing compounds which work in two different ways:Soluble fiber works in the gut to inhibit absorption of ingested cholesterol and remove bile. D-alpha-tocotrienol works in the liver to inhibit cholesterol synthesis.

Barley flour can be used in place of wheat in all food except leavened breads. In yeast breads up to 1/3 of the wheat flour can be substituted with barley flour with no reduction in loaf quality, but added healthy soluble fiber and tocotrienol.

The combination of hulless seed, waxy starch, and very high levels of soluble fiber yields an extremely palatable grain. In processing, barley kernels puff up double that of normal barley. The waxy starch has exceptional freeze-thaw stability, thus the flour is a valuable ingredient in products which require freezing.

Greg Fox, PhD, Chris Fastnaught, PhD Phoenix Seed Research

Barley already has the ability to use Heart/Stroke Foundation symbol. There are rules and regulations that need to be followed for it to be used.

The hulless barley from DUGA, contains a high amount of the natural soluble fibre betaglucan. Betaglucan in barley have documented effect on lowering blood cholesterol , and reduce postprandial glycaemic response, with approved health claims (Ref. EFSA – European Food Safety Authority), that states:

” Barley betaglucans have been shown to lower/reduce blood cholesterol. High cholesterol is a risk factor in the development of coronary heart disease”. At least 3 grams of barley beta-glucans should be consumed per day in order to obtain the claimed effect.

” Consumption of beta-glucans from barley contributes to the reduction of the glucose rise after a meal”. In order to obtain the claimed effect, 4 grams of beta-glucans from barley for each 30 g of available carbohydrates should be consumed per meal. The target population is individuals who wish to reduce their post-prandial glycaemic responses. The US FDA (United States Food and Drug Adminsitration have the same health claim with barley on cholesterol.

Barley naturally have a higher amount of betaglucans than oat, and the processing method to separate the betaglucans is different. While barley need only mechanical processing, oat need to undergo several chemical processes.