Though it may not sound like the most appealing beverage option, barley water is chock full of nutrients and antioxidants. You can drink this fiber source to aid certain ailments or simply as part of a healthy regimen.
You should consume 14 g of fiber for every 1,000 calories ingested. For the average man or woman, this translates to 25 to 30 g a day, which can be a lofty goal. Adding barley water to your diet can help you get closer to the recommended daily intake of fiber.
Increased fiber intake can help to keep your bowels healthy by improving bowel function. Barley water can help those suffering from diarrhea, as it works to restore electrolyte and fluid balance. Drinking barley water can also aid those who are fighting constipation by adding bulk to stool so it can pass easier. For those who have irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS, barley water can help to regulate stool frequency and consistency.
For those looking to shed pounds, barley water gives that extra boost of fiber to make you feel fuller longer. This increase in fiber can also help balance blood sugars and clean out your digestive tract. Speak with your doctor about the healthiest options for you specifically when it comes to losing weight.
The additional fiber that barley water provides can lower your cholesterol and keep it low. Keeping your LDL, or "bad," cholesterol low can help to ward off cardiovascular disease, since too much cholesterol in the blood can lead to a buildup of plaque in the arteries.
- Washington State University: WSU Researcher Works to Expand Barley Market ; Holly Luka
- Colorado State University Extension: Barley: Approved Health Claim; May 2010
- Harvard Health Publications: 11 Foods That Lower Cholesterol
- Bastyr University: Fiber and Weight Loss; Wendy Caamano, et al; February 2010
- UT Southwestern Medical University: Bowel Function
- University of Maryland Medical Center: Fiber