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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Comparison of Glucose and Insulin Responses to Barley and Oats

Authors
item Behall, Kay
item Scholfield, Daniel
item Hallfrisch, Judith

Submitted to: American Diabetes Association Meeting
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: February 28, 1999
Publication Date: N/A

Technical Abstract: Oats have been recognized as beneficial in controlling cholesterol, glucose and insulin responses as a result of their high soluble fiber content. Barley also has high amounts of soluble fiber and a new cultivar (Prowashonupana barley SustagrainTM) has been developed which has three times the amount of soluble fiber found in standard oats. In order to compare glucose and insulin responses to oats and barley, ten women (body mass index 24-33, 34-60 y) consumed glucose (1 g/kg body weight) and four test meals (1 g carbohydrate/kg body weight) of sweetened cereals of which 2/3 of the carbohydrate was from oat flour, oatmeal, barley flour or barley cereal. Tolerances were given in a Latin Square after two days of controlled diet. Blood samples were collected at fasting, 1/2, 1, 2, and 3 h. Peak glucose and insulin levels after barley were significantly lower than those after glucose or oats. Glucose responses (areas under curve) were reduced by 15-30% by oats and 57-61% by barley. Insulin responses were significantly reduced only by barley. Glucose values were normalized after oatmeal and barley in two women with impaired glucose tolerance. Particle size of the oats and barley had little effect on the responses. The high soluble fiber barley was more effective than oats in reducing both glucose and insulin responses. These results demonstrate the potential for dietary control of type 2 diabetes with foods high in soluble fibers.

Last Modified: 12/21/2014
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