Friday, 29 January 2016

Discover Gluten Free Foods Naturally Rich in Beta Glucan

Cholesterol-Lowering Beta Glucan on a Gluten-Free Diet

Cholesterol-Lowering Beta Glucan on a Gluten-Free Diet

Beta glucan is a soluble dietary fibre found naturally in some foods and research has shown that it has a cholesterol lowering effect. In addition, soluble fibre is also known to help slow down the absorption of sugars from our diet, which means that beta glucan can also help to control blood sugar levels. If you need to follow a gluten-free diet and are also interested in lowering your cholesterol levels, it can be hard to find information that caters to your specific dietary needs.  This is especially true for beta glucan as the richest natural food source of beta glucan is pearl barley, which also contains gluten. However, it is perfectly possible to eat plenty of cholesterol-lowering beta glucan on a Gluten-Free Diet, just read on!

Beta Glucan Triple Play

First of all, let's take a look at why you would want to increase your intake of beta glucan, which is all to do with what I call the  Beta Glucan Triple Play. Beta glucan works in three different ways to reduce cholesterol levels: 
  1. By binding to bile and cholesterol together, beta glucan helps prevent the cholesterol-like substances in our bile from being reabsorbed.
  2. It helps prevent cholesterol in our food from being absorbed
  3. It helps reduce the levels of cholesterol in our body by taking more cholesterol out of our blood stream.

3 Naturally Gluten-Free Foods Rich in Beta Glucan 

3 Naturally Gluten-Free Foods Rich in Beta Glucan
3 Naturally Gluten-Free Foods Rich in Beta Glucan
The UK's leading cholesterol charity (link: advises that optimal intake is 3g or more of beta glucan daily. This can be achieved through eating 2-4 portions of foods rich in beta glucan. Unfortunately the best natural source of beta glucan is gluten-containing pearl barley. However, don't worry at all, here's 3 excellent, delicious & naturally gluten-free sources of beta glucan:
  • certified gluten-free Oats
  • Shiitake Mushrooms
  • culinary Seaweed

5 Super Easy Ways To Eat More Gluten Free Beta Glucan

oat-rich, gluten-free breakfast granola
Gluten-Free Oat-Rich Breakfast Granola
  1. Make your own oat-rich, gluten-free breakfast granola (see how here)
  2. Add sliced shiitake mushrooms to casseroles and salads
  3. Use roasted seaweed sheets to make your own sushi rolls
  4. Use oat milk to make your fruit smoothie & top it with a tablespoon of toasted oats
  5. Did you know that you can make savoury granola to use as a sprinkle over soup instead of croutons? 

Further Inspiration

If you need to follow a gluten-free diet, you'll know that it can be both expensive and difficult to find shop-bought gluten-free, beta-glucan rich foods that are also low fat and low cholesterol, such as gluten-free granola and mueseli. That difficulty is easily solved with my  Gluten Free & Wheat Free Diet Brunch & Breakfast Recipe Cookbook: 

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