Lower Your LDL Cholesterol – Add Barley to Your Baking

Turn a health need into an opportunity. If you or someone in your family needs to reduce their LDL (bad cholesterol) and you enjoy cooking and/or baking, adding barley to your repetoire can make a real difference. Create some foods everyone will want to eat to replace some of the foods that have been contributing to that high cholesterol reading.

Three years ago my doctor told me I needed to reduce my LDL. My research led me to identify barley as one of a handful of foods I would add to or increase in my diet (research links below) As it happens my partner does not enjoy barley in soups so I turned to baking with barley flour and uses for barley flakes. The results have been some new household favourites (and some old favourites that have been modified without complaint). At my next annual review, my doctor told me I had achieved the desired LDL reduction and I didn’t need to lose any more weight either.

Here are some of my recipes for baking or cooking with barley flour and barley flakes (if you like what you see, check back from time to time as I’ll be adding more):

Barley Banana Bread
Low Fat (but yummy) Barley Pancakes
Barley Biscuits
Cholesterol Busting Granola
Whole Grain Bread for the Bread Machine
Oat ‘n’ Barley Porridge

You can experiment with substituting barley flour for some or all of the whole wheat or white flour in many recipes. Barley has less gluten than wheat so you may want to add a tablespoon or two of gluten flour for each cup of barley flour when experimenting with your favourite bread recipe. One of my favourite uses for barley flakes is to make porridge that is 50/50 barley flakes and large flake oatmeal.

Research supporting the benefits of barley in reducing LDL:
USDA – Health Effects of Barley Consumption

Journal of the American Dietetic Association – Cholesterol Lowering Effect of Barley Bran Flour and Oil