NATURES BEAUTY - VANILLA

When something (or someone) is bland and unexciting, we usually say they are like vanilla. Simple, colorless, ordinary, easily overlooked – that describes vanilla accurately, right? Well, not exactly. The more you learn about vanilla – its origins, its popularity and what it takes to get it to our pantry shelves – you may refrain from ever describing anything or anyone as “just plain vanilla.”

….FULL ARTICLE

NATURES BEAUTY - CHAMOMILE

Have you ever suffered through a bout of insomnia and had someone tell you to try drinking a cup of chamomile tea to help you sleep? Chamomile is a daisy-like plant often employed in herbal medicine. Over the centuries as people have used it, chamomile has been touted to treat a wide range of ailments, from hay fever to menstrual cramps to ulcers, hemorrhoids and, of course, insomnia. Your shower gel, shampoo or skin-care lotion may contain chamomile, which is said to treat conditions such as sunburn .....

….FULL ARTICLE

NATURES BEAUTY - BARLEY

Barley is one of the oldest domesticated cereal grains still being grown around the world today. It originated in Ethiopia and southeast Asia. It is most often used in bread and malted beverages such as beer (barley beer was likely one of the first alcoholic drinks humans developed). Over the centuries, barley water has been used for various medicinal purposes; it is good for clearing up urinary tract infections and is also said to be a good remedy for kidney stones.

….FULL ARTICLE

Use the buttons below to scroll through more great articles from our Natures Beauty Column

MORE ARTICLES

Be Sociable, Share!

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Delicious Share on Digg Share on Google Bookmarks Share on LinkedIn Share on LiveJournal Share on Newsvine Share on Reddit Share on Stumble Upon Share on Tumblr

MORE NATURES BEAUTY ARTICLES

CONTACT INFORMATION

© Health & Wellness Magazine - All rights reserved | Designed and Maintained by PurplePatch Innovations

MORE FROM ROCKPOINT PUBLISHING

HEALTH & WELLNESS MAGAZINE

HOME | FEATURE ARTICLES | COLUMNS | DIGITAL ISSUES | CALENDAR | DIRECTORY | ABOUT | CONTACT

subscribe to Health & Wellness

NATURES BEAUTY - BARLEY

Barley is one of the oldest domesticated cereal grains still being grown around the world today. It originated in Ethiopia and southeast Asia. It is most often used in bread and malted beverages such as beer (barley beer was likely one of the first alcoholic drinks humans developed). Over the centuries, barley water has been used for various medicinal purposes; it is good for clearing up urinary tract infections and is also said to be a good remedy for kidney stones. The drink is prepared by mixing barley flour with water. During the Middle Ages, wheat was very expensive and not widely available, so many Europeans of the time made bread from a combination of barley and rye. English and Dutch settlers brought barley to the United States, and this country is a top producer of the grain. In recent years, barley ranked fourth behind corn, rice and wheat in terms of quantity produced.


Barley’s health benefits are hard to beat. According to Medical News Today, barley provides a high percentage of the daily requirement of selenium, which is not found in most foods. Selenium detoxifies cancer-causing compounds, stimulates the production of killer T cells and inhibits the proliferation of cancer cells. It also has been shown to reduce the risk of colon cancer. Barley has been shown to help lower blood pressure naturally because it contains potassium, calcium and magnesium. Its iron, phosphorous and zinc help build and strengthen bones.

Its folate and vitamin B6 support heart health by preventing the buildup of homocysteine, which can damage blood vessels. Other minerals in barley include manganese and copper. Barley has no cholesterol but it does have plenty of fiber, and that promotes regularity and digestive tract health. That fiber is also high in beta glucan, which lowers cholesterol by binding to bile acids and removing them from the body. And it helps regulate blood sugar levels in people who have diabetes.


Barley is usually available in two forms: hulled and pearled. With hulled barley, the inedible outer shell is removed, leaving the bran and germ intact. If you want to cook with hulled barley, it must be soaked overnight to draw out its flavor and texture, then drained and rinsed. With pearled barley, the layer of bran has been removed along with the hull. Pearl barley is not as chewy as hulled barley and cooks more quickly, but it also has fewer nutrients and is not considered to be whole grain. Whole grains are important sources of dietary fiber, vitamins and minerals. Numerous studies suggest increasing the consumption of plant foods will lower your risk of obesity, diabetes and heart disease. You can add barley to your diet by using it in soups, stews, salad or bread. Replace your morning

can add barley to your diet by using it in soups, stews, salad or bread. Replace your morning oatmeal with a warm bowl of barley. A study showed barley was much more effective in reducing both glucose and insulin responses than oats. Barley contains gluten, so if you have celiac disease, it is best to avoid eating it.


Sources:


TANYA TYLER

Tanya Tyler is the Editor of Health & Wellness Magazine

more articles by Tanya Tyler