Rye has been consumed by people mostly in the Central Asian region, as well as in other parts of the Middle East for many centuries now. In the old days, it was not very popular and was considered a lower quality grain than others like wheat and barley. Recently, however, it has become quite popular as an alternative to wheat, as people become more aware of the health benefits of rye.
Flour milled from rye is actually more nutritious than wheat because it contains the germ and the bran of rye, which is quite difficult to separate from the rye seeds during milling. Regular inclusion of rye in your diet can bring you the health benefits of rye such as prevention from chronic diseases like cancer an diabetes. In some studies, where men and women were randomly served breads made of rye and wheat, a considerable reduction in the LDL (bad) cholesterol levels, especially among men was observed. Rye can also improve digestion, because of its high fiber content.
Lowered cardiovascular risks can be gained from a regular diet of rye breads. Any whole grain bread or cereals taken regularly can actually improve the heart condition and can even be a good way to reduce weight. Rye is often recommended for seniors, because it can lower the risk of heart disease, cancer and diabetes.
Rye has a natural plant compound called lignans which, when combined with the digestive flora can lessen the risk of cancer and inhibit further growth of tumors, particularly in the colon and the breast.
For diabetic patients, or people with high blood sugar, rye breads are recommended because it does not cause an immediate spike in the blood insulin level, unlike some breads.
For women undergoing menopause, rye can help lessen hot flashes and for post menopausal women, it can prevent the onset of coronary artery complications and osteoporosis.
The high fiber content of rye makes it ideal for people with digestive problems and even IBS or irritable bowel syndrome.
Wholemeal rye breads can also be tasty and can be served for breakfast or as compliments to soups. Enjoy the health benefits of rye by adding it regularly to your diet.