All about Grains
The Healthy Grains
Description: Farro is an Italian name for emmer wheat, an ancient whole grain taken from hard wheat. This ancient grain is sourced from Italy and is known for its complex nutty taste and it's similar appearance to brown rice grains. Farro is suitable for gluten free diets because it is so easily digested and high in protein. This grain is often confused for spelt because of it's taste and texture. In the market, farro comes in many forms, including perlato(pearled) and semi-perlato (semi-pearled) as well as three grades, long, medium, and cracked.
This ancient grain can be used in soups, salads, and deserts, and is best paired with good quality olive oil, herbs, and spices.
1. High in Fiber
This grain has a high level of fiber content which makes it better for the heart, great for digestion, and beneficial for diabetics in preventing blood sugar and insulin spikes and dips. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19395130)
2. Improves Immunity and Heart Health
Whole grains in general improves the immune system due to high fiber content and nutrients. Farro has not only high concentrations of dietary fiber, and has antioxident properties including including phenolic compounds that have been linked to prevent diseases. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19079919)
3. Good Source of Protein
Farro is beneficial for many vegetarians especially since it has excellent protein content. Farro is considered as an excellent source of plant based protein, similar to ones you get from legumes and beans.
4. High in B Vitamins
Farro contains multiple B vitamins, especially Niacin B3 which is important for metabolic health and the process of breaking down or converting carbohydrates, fats and proteins from the foods we consume. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18165311)
5. Good Source of Antioxidants
Unprocessed grains also provide antioxidants, especially the type called lignans. Plant lignans are known to reduce inflammation and are highly consumed by populations known for their longevity and heart health. Studies suggest that increasing your intake of lignans — from foods like whole grains or seeds, for example — is associated with positive reactions of C-reactive protein, a lowering effect on plasma total and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, lower blood pressure levels, and an overall reduced risk of cardiovascular disease. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2951311/)
6. Provides Iron, Magnesium and Zinc
Farro is a good source of nutrients that some plant-based eaters, or anyone with a mostly processed diet, might be missing out on, including magnesium, zinc and iron.