Effects of barley cultivars, fractionation and cooking on its compositional, nutritional and textural properties

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Gray, Danielle Jean

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University of Guelph


The goal of this study was to promote barley as a healthy cereal for humans through improved understanding of how nutritional and functional properties are impacted by primary processing and genetic differences. Nine barley cultivars representing diverse genetics and commercial value were selected and pearled to various degrees to obtain four fractions: whole grain, commercial, pot and white pearled. The fractions were evaluated based on glycemic carbohydrate and dietary fiber composition, rate and extent of starch digestion in vitro, viscosity and textural properties. Variations in genotype and processing led to significant differences in nutritional properties. This was obvious between hulless waxy and normal barley in which the former had more [beta]-glucan and less total starch but exhibited higher starch digestion index and rapidly available glucose. Starch content and viscosity increased as pearling time was prolonged, but [beta]-glucan was fairly consistent in the fractions. The results demonstrate that choice of barley cultivar and primary processing are crucial in barley product development.



barley, healthy cereal, nutritional properties, functional properties, primary processing, genetic differences, fractions