Barley water is a drink made from water that has been cooked with barley. The drink claims to help in weight loss, flush toxins, keep your digestion regular, and more. It is an excellent diuretic, which cures urinary tract infections (UTI) and also helps the body to keep cool during the summers.
Barley based foods have a range of health benefits, many of which come from its fiber content. Apart from drinking barley water, you can also add the grain to salads, stews and steamed vegetables.
Barley is an excellent source of dietary fiber, but also contains essential minerals, including magnesium, manganese, selenium, calcium, iron, zinc and copper, antioxidants and phytochemicals which are believed to lower the risk of heart disease and diabetes.
Keep reading to find out if drinking barley water for health benefits is something you should consider.
Health Benefits Of Barley Water
1. Promotes weight loss
The fiber content in unstrained barley water can help your digestion become more regular. It can also make you feel fuller for longer. Barley water hydrates you and contains lots of calories, but very little fat.
It is also good for digestion, and also stimulates the metabolism of fats. But this definitely doesn’t mean that you can indulge in fatty foods and expect barley water to work its magic. Combined with a healthy diet and exercise, barley water can aid in weight loss because it digests slowly and keeps you fuller for longer.
(Also read –> Fennel Seeds For Weight Loss)
2. Home Remedy for Urinary Tract Infections
Since barley water acts as a diuretic, it is considered to be a natural remedy for urinary tract infections, and children or adults are often recommended barley water on a daily basis till the infection subsides. It is also said to be a good remedy for kidney stones or cysts.
(Also read –> Dietary Tips That Help You To Fight PMS)
3. Lowers Cholesterol and Blood Sugar
Being a good source of fiber and beta-glucans, barley also works towards keeping a check on blood cholesterol by inhibiting the absorption of LDL and triglycerides from food and blood sugar by improving insulin resistance. Moreover, it has anti-inflammatory properties which not only help in cooling the body but in protecting the heart as well. (Also read –> Foods That Lower The High Blood Pressure)
Barley water has been tested for its ability to control blood sugar. Drinking unsweetened barley water can give you the benefit of controlling blood sugar spikes. (Also read –> Fenugreek Seeds For Diabetes)
4. Improves digestion
Barley water is considered as a digestive tonic which helps in facilitating the process of digestion. It is often recommended to those suffering from constipation or diarrhea, and it also helps to restore the electrolyte balance of your body.
How to Make Barley Water
To make the most of this healthy drink, it is best to stir it up at home. Barley water can be made with pearl barley, lemon juice, honey, and water.
Barley water is easy to make. Many people choose to add natural flavorings, such as lemon, to the water to give it a better taste. Ensure that you cook the grains well to extract the most nutrients from it.
1/4 cup pearl barley
4 cups water
A pinch of sea salt
A drizzle of honey (optional)
2 lemons (juice and peel)
1. Heat the water and pearl barley in a saucepan and bring it to a boil.
2. Add the salt and let it cook on a low flame for 30 minutes. You can muddle the grains a little, using a spoon.
3. Strain it into a glass, add in lemon rind and lemon juice, and drizzle with a little honey on top. Let it cool completely. You can also keep it in the refrigerator for 30 minutes and then have it.
You can also use ginger, cinnamon, cumin seeds and other spices, or coconut water to enhance the taste. The leftover grains can be used to make cereals, salads or a thickening agent for curries and smoothies.
Note : Barley contains gluten, so anyone with a wheat allergy or intolerance should avoid it.
Symptoms of a wheat allergy may include : rashes, nausea, stomach cramps, indigestion, vomiting, diarrhea, and headaches.