Buckwheat

Buckwheat Enhanced Gluten-free Bread a Healthier Gluten-free Alternative

Researches from the Polish Academy of Sciences recently published a study suggesting substituting some or all of the corn starch in many traditional gluten-free bread recipes with buckwheat flour. In addition to providing higher levels of antioxidants, B vitamins, magnesium, phosphorus and potassium, the study indicated that swapping 40% of the corn starch for buckwheat flour also increased its “overall sensory quality” when compared to the gluten-free bread used in the control. Although recipes were tested with anywhere from 10-40% buckwheat flour, the conclusion clearly points to the 40% buckwheat flour results as having the most nutritional benefits for celiac sufferers.
International Journal of Food Science and Technology, October 2010; 45(10):1993–2000. Epub August 25, 2010.

Celiac / Gluten Intolerance
Diet Quality / Nutrients
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Naturally Gluten-Free Grains May Be Cross-Contaminated

A Polish team from the Instytut Zywnosci in Warsaw analyzed 22 gluten-free products and 19 naturally gluten-free grains and flours, for gluten content. Gluten content in the products ranged from 5.19 to 57.16 mg/kg. In the inherently gluten-free grains and flours, no gluten was detected in rice and buckwheat samples, but was detected in rice flakes (7.05 mg/kg) in pearl millet (27.51 mg/kg) and in oats (>100 mg/kg). ?(Poland)
Rocz Panstw Zaki Hig. 2010; 61(1):51-5. ??

Meanwhile, in the U.S., Tricia Thompson, MS, RD, a nutrition consultant specializing in gluten-free diets, arranged for gluten-testing of 22 retail samples of inherently gluten-free grains, seeds, and flours. She found contamination of 20 to 2925 ppm in seven of 22 samples, putting them over the proposed FDA limit of 20 ppm, with lower levels in some others. Both articles point to the importance of gluten-free certification even on foods that are naturally gluten-free, such as millet.?(USA)
Journal of the American Dietetic Association. June 2010; 110(6):937-40.

Diet Quality / Nutrients
Digestion / Regularity
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Quinoa Offers Antioxidants for Gluten-Free Diets

Researchers suggest that adding quinoa or buckwheat to gluten-free products significantly increases their polyphenol content, as compared to typical gluten-free products made with rice, corn, and potato flour. Products made with quinoa or buckwheat contained more antioxidants compared with both wheat products and the control gluten-free products. Also of note: antioxidant activity increased with sprouting, and decreased with breadmaking.
Food Chemistry, March 2010; 119 (2): 770-778.

Diet Quality / Nutrients
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Sprouted Buckwheat Extract Decreases Blood Pressure

Korean researchers fed raw buckwheat extract and germinated buckwheat extract to hypertensive rats for five weeks then compared the results. The rats fed the germinated buckwheat had lower systolic blood pressure, while both groups exhibited significantly reduced oxidative damage in aortic endothelial cells. The scientists concluded that “these results suggest that germinated buckwheat extra has an atihypertensive effect and may protect arterial endothelial cells from oxidative stress.”
Phytotherapy Research, July 2009; 23(7):993-8.

Blood Pressure / Hypertension
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Buckwheat Starch is A Good Energy Source

In a study found via the China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI), researchers at the Graduate University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences explored the digestibility of starch derived from oats, wheat, buckwheat, and sweet potatoes. The goal of this study was to determine which of the four starch sources might prove useful in high-energy diets. Pigs were fed diets containing vitamins, minerals, and starch from one of the four sources, and after 15 days, it was determined that buckwheat, along with oats and wheat, provided a better source of dietary energy than sweet potatoes.
China’s Research of Agricultural Modernization Journal, April 2009

Diet Quality / Nutrients
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Buckwheat Protein Shows Promise For Lowering Blood Glucose

A study from the Jilin Agricultural University in China investigated the blood glucose lowering potential of buckwheat protein, pitting it against a toxic glucose analogue called alloxan. This insidious chemical selectively destroys insulin-producing cells in the pancreas, causing characteristics similar to type 1 diabetes when found in rodents and many other animal species. Different doses of buckwheat protein were administered, and researchers discovered that the blood glucose levels of test subjects were indeed lowered when compared to the control group.
Journal of Jilin Agricultural University, 2009; 31(1):102-4

Diabetes / Insulin / Glucose
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Sprouted Buckwheat Protects Against Fatty Liver

Fatty liver disease, like alcohol-induced cyrrhosis, can lead to terminal liver failure, and it’s increasing, as it often goes hand in hand with type 2 diabetes. Korean researchers found that buckwheat sprouted for 48 hours developed “potent anti-fatty liver activities” that significantly reduced fatty liver in mice after 8 weeks. Scientists found that sprouting the buckwheat increased the concentration of rutin tenfold, and also increased quercitin, both of which are known for their anti-inflammatory effects.
Phytomedicine, August 2007; 14(7-8):563-7. Epub 2007 Jun 29.

Inflammation
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Quinoa, Oats, and Buckwheat: More Satiating

A University of Milan study compared buckwheat, oats, and, quinoa to see if any of them showed promise in helping with appetite control.  In three experiments – one for each grain – subjects’ satisfaction and subsequent calorie consumption were compared, after eating the study grain and after eating wheat or rice. All three study grains had a higher Satiating Efficiency Index (SEI) than wheat or rice; white bread was in fact lowest in appetite satisfaction. Unfortunately, even after feeling fuller from eating the study grains, the subjects did not cut their calories at the next meal!
British Journal of Nutrition, November 2005; 94 (5):850-8.

Hunger / Satiety
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Buckwheat Provides Prebiotic-like Benefits; Considered Healthy Food

In 2003, a study out of Madrid, Spain examined the high nutrient levels in buckwheat to determine whether it could behave as a prebiotic and be considered a healthy food. (Prebiotics are indigestible food ingredients that stimulate the helpful bacteria in our digestive systems.) Not only did the buckwheat-fed group emerge with a lower bodyweight when compared to the control, some of the best types of helpful bacteria were found, along with a decrease in some types of pathogenic bacteria.
Nutrition Research, June 2003; 23(6):803-14

Diet Quality / Nutrients
Digestion / Regularity
Gut Health
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