13 Types of Major Cereals Benefits!
The main types of cereals are rice, corn, wheat, rye, oats, barley, sorghum, quinoa, flax seeds, farro, buckwheat, spelled and millet . Cereals are one of the essential food groups for the organism and therefore one of the most important in the human diet. These belong to the plants of the grass family, which are grown for their grain and the food is made from these seeds.
The cereal has a structure with several elements. One of them is the germ, which is in the nucleus of the seed and is what allows the development of a new plant.
Another is the endosperm, which is a floury or feculent structure that surrounds the germ. The testa that is the outer layer that covers the grain of the cereal and the shell, which is another layer much harder that protects the head.
Cereals contain components that are basic in human nutrition such as starch, lipids, cellulose and other proteins. Starch is found inside and its layers are high in protein, minerals and fibers. These foods are also rich in water and carbohydrates.
Classification according to its processing
There are different types of cereals, but these can be classified initially into three types according to their processing :
This is the type of cereal to which the bran and the germ that compose it have been extracted. Due to this process, its texture is finer and its shelf life is much longer. The problem is that with this process a large amount of nutrients is eliminated, especially fiber.
This is the type of cereal that conserves its crust, that is to say, that neither the bran nor the germ is removed in the grinding process. For this reason they maintain their nutritional properties such as fiber, potassium, selenium and magnesium.
it is a refined cereal to which the nutrients that were eliminated are added artificially. However, they are not better than wholegrains because although some nutrients are added, the lost fiber can not be recovered.
Types of cereals according to their varieties
This is one of the best known cereals in the world and one of the most consumed. It grows in soils with puddles of water that must be well irrigated or be at the delta of a river. It is a very versatile food that has different varieties. Depending on its shape it can be classified as long, medium or short grain. Depending on its color, aroma and touch can be glutinous, aromatic or pigmented. And according to its industrial treatment can be vaporized or precooked. It can also be integral or refined. Rice is the cereal that contains the most starch. It also contains carbohydrates, as well as small amounts of thiamine , riboflavin and niacin. The vast majority of rice has its origin in the Asian continent and is used in many ways: as a garnish, in stews, salads and even to produce oils and wines.
Corn, also known as corn, corn or millet, is the most produced cereal in the world. Its plant is usually very tall and the ears can be of different colors: from dark purple to yellow (the most common). Most of the production of this food occurs in America. It is a very versatile cereal that allows the creation of various foods. It is highly nutritious , as it is rich in vitamin A and B, in magnesium, phosphorus, antioxidants and carbohydrates. It is also beneficial for the body to help regulate the intestinal flora and prevent diseases such as diabetes and heart problems, it can also be consumed by people with celiac disease, since it does not contain gluten.
This is another of the most cultivated cereals in the world, mainly because it is used for a wide variety of products. With the wheat, refined and integral flour, semolina, bran or beer are produced, among others. There are different varieties of this cereal depending on its hardness, color and even the season in which it is grown. Wheat is one of the most caloric cereals, since it provides 339 calories per 100 grams. It contains carbohydrates and fats of the saturated, unsaturated and monounsaturated type. But it also includes proteins, vitamins and minerals. It is good for diseases such as Alzheimer’s , dementia and female infertility .
Originally from Iran, rye is part of the wheat family. The ear of this cereal is long and thin. It is commonly used for the production of alcoholic beverages such as vodka, whiskey or brandy , as well as for the manufacture of flours. This cereal can be cooked in flakes or ground for flour. It is a food that has antioxidants, fiber and phenolic acids and is associated with the proper functioning of the digestive system. It is used to sauté vegetables, with rice, to prepare stews and for different types of breads. ‘
This is one of the best known foods. It is rich in fiber, complex carbohydrates, trace elements, amino acids, vitamins (B1, B2 and vitamin E, among others) and minerals (calcium, iron, magnesium and zinc). It is a great ally to fight diseases such as diabetes, provides energy and helps stabilize blood sugar levels. It also contributes to the control of high cholesterol and works as a natural diuretic. Oats is a cereal that adapts perfectly to cold and temperate climates. Its colors can be black, gray, beige or yellow, depending on whether it is refined or integral. It can be found in the whole market, in flakes or in muesli.
It is a cereal similar to wheat that is also used to make bread. Barley can be cooked as a cereal or ground into flour. It is distinguished from other foods by its sweet and almond flavor. Its cultivation is very versatile since it is suitable for any type of climate and can be of different colors: brown, light brown or purple. The most popular use of this cereal is as a main ingredient in the preparation of beer and other alcoholic beverages. But it also serves to prepare various dishes. It contains more proteins than wheat but less gluten than this. On the other hand it is one of the grains richest in fiber, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.
This is a cereal that is not only destined for human consumption but also animal. It has its origins in America, Asia and Europe, and because it is resistant to drought and heat, it can be cultivated in arid regions. The sorghum is highly used in the elaboration of alcoholic beverages and thanks to the fact that it lacks gluten, it is special to be consumed by celiacs. This cereal is usually prepared steamed or as a complement to soups. Sorghum has a wide variety, but by differentiating them by color it is possible to classify them as white and red sorghum grains. On the other hand, it has sugars of high quality, slow absorption and low fat content. The proteins they contain are not of high quality but when combined with milk or legumes, proteins of high biological value can be obtained for the organism.
The Quinoa is not really a cereal, but is consumed as such. It is a seed that is known as pseudocereal. Compared to most cereals, this food contains a greater amount of proteins, fibers and fats, especially unsaturated. In addition, it stands out for its content of Omega 3, Omega 6 and contains less carbohydrates. As for micronutrients, quinoa contains calcium, potassium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus and zinc, as well as B vitamins and vitamin E. It has a low glycemic index and helps control cholesterol levels. Usually consumed as rice, in salads, hamburgers, cakes, etc.
The appearance of this plant is similar to that of wheat. It contains high amounts of bran, but this is lost when processing the grains. The farro has a gummy texture, which makes it perfect for preparing polenta and breads. It is a cereal whose water composition is approximately 10%. Like other cereals, farro is rich in vitamins such as A, B, C and E, as well as in mineral salts such as calcium, potassium, iron, magnesium and phosphorus. It also contains polyunsaturated fatty acids, proteins and insoluble fiber. Thanks to its properties, it performs a restorative and antianemic function, contributes to the prevention of constipation , diabetes and other diseases such as hypercholesterolemia and colon cancer.
- Flax seeds
Flax seeds, like quinoa, are not properly a cereal but are used as such. They are seeds rich in dietary fiber, weak estrogens, Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids, vitamins and minerals. They also contain digestive enzymes that not only facilitate digestion but also promote intestinal transit. This superfood is highly recommended in diets to lose weight, as well as to reduce cholesterol and prevent constipation problems. To consume, the seeds are usually crushed to incorporate them into homemade breads, biscuits or buns. They can also be mixed in fruit juices, yogurt, salads, sauces, soups, etc.
This food also falls into the category of pseudocereals. It is recommended as a healthy substitute for conventional wheat, as it does not contain gluten and is richer in protein, minerals and antioxidants than other cereals. Usually used in the form of grain, either soaked or boiled, flakes, sprouts, flour, among others. Thanks to its important fiber content, it helps control blood sugar levels. It also helps improve heart health, is good for circulation and reduces the risk of colon cancer. On the other hand, although it is gluten-free, it is necessary to ensure that there is no risk of cross-contamination by the place where it is processed so that it can be consumed by celiacs.
It is a variety of wheat widely used in antiquity. Its origin is located in Iran, Egypt and even in China, where it was used for the production of alcoholic beverages similar to beer. Little by little its use was extended to Europe and was used in the preparation of breads for the more affluent classes. However, its consumption has resurfaced, especially due to the nutritional benefits it offers. Spelled is one of the best sources of protein of vegetable origin and if consumed in a quantity and with an appropriate combination it could replace red meat. The proteins in these whole grains contain a lot of fiber and little fat. They also contain no cholesterol and provide vitamins and minerals.
This is one of the oldest cereals. It is an alkalizing food, which is also remineralizing. Usually eaten regularly in the East and is a grain capable of withstanding sudden changes in temperature. It grows rapidly, requires little water and is highly resistant to pests. Millet is an easily digested food and suitable for people with celiac disease because it does not contain gluten. It is rich in fiber, magnesium, phosphorus, fatty acids, iron and vitamins of group B. Thanks to all these properties is ideal for those who suffer from digestive problems such as constipation, heartburn, ulcers, gas, diarrhea, etc. Its consumption is also recommended in cases of diabetes, iron deficiency anemia, stages of stress , exhaustion, pregnancy and lactation.