Beta Glucan exists as a kind of fiber that’s dissolved in liquid and attaches itself to acids in the bile and excretes these acids off the body by way of feces. These acids stay produced in the liver through the use of the body’s stored cholesterol.
Thus, when these acids are driven out as excrement, the liver’s required to utilize more cholesterol to properly make new acids in the bile. In the process, the cholesterol levels of the body are decreased. Pretty cool, right? Now, where can we naturally get beta-glucans in foods?
- Oats – These are one of the richest suppliers of beta-glucan as evidenced by the U.S. FDA allowing health assertions to be gotten by foods that have rolled oats, and oat bran or flour. And this is owing to the elevated intensity of fiber from beta-glucan in oats.
- Barley - The food fiber in this cereal is also famous to be rich in beta-glucan. In addition, it boasts the extra benefit of having propionic acid that may overpower the HMG-CoA enzyme that catalyzes reduction. This enzyme remains responsible for the liver’s production of cholesterol.
- Mushrooms – Specifically, reishi, shiitake, and maitake, mushrooms stands as another rich food source of beta-glucan. Known also to contain polysaccharides and phytonutrients, mushrooms are supposed to have properties that fight disease bolstering immunity.
- Baker’s Yeasts - Purified beta-glucan in yeast is simpler to include within food products as compared to beta-glucan in barley or oats. Since yeast beta-glucan doesn’t break up in water, it’s easier for the body to absorb when purified than innate beta-glucan.
- Seaweed and Algae – The beta-glucan from seaweeds and algae are generally extracted, isolated, processed, and used for supplements and food additives. The brown seaweed and Euglena algae are among the myriad of various beta-glucan sources under this category.
- Whole Grains – Particularly, wheat, rye, and sorghum, beta-glucan is present, but in small quantities. When unrefined, they are highly nutritious dietary sources and offers a wholesome supply of various B vitamins, protein, and minerals, such as magnesium and iron.
- Vegetables – Commonly consumed worldwide, beans, peas, lentils, broccoli, sweet potato, and eggplants contain some beta-glucan. They are also rich sources of various B vitamins, fiber, and minerals. In fact, beans are a great meat replacement being a vegetarian protein source.
- Fruits – Predominantly apples, strawberries, and prunes, these beta-glucan sources are also among the healthiest foods people eat. They exist high in vitamins, fiber, and antioxidants while being low in calories, besides having no cholesterol and fat.