Glycemic Load of Barley- Is Barley High in Sugar?

Glycemic Load is the amount of the carbohydrate of the food with the pace with which it increases the blood glucose levels. The Glycemic Index is a simple way of making healthy diet choices, and it helps to compare with the alternative sources of nutrients in terms of blood glucose levels. Glucose represents a higher blood glucose response as compared to fructose. 

Barley is a kind of cereal grain that has a chewy texture and a mild nutty flavour. It is widely cultivated to be used as food for both humans and animals and is used to produce whiskey and beer. It is one of the most produced grains all over the world. According to the International GI Tables, Barley has the Glycemic Index of about 20-22. It is a good source of nutrients and is excellent healthy food.

Barley comprises healthy nutrients like

  • Fiber
  • Protein
  • Thiamine
  • Riboflavin
  • Niacin
  • Vitamin B6
  • Folate
  • Iron
  • Magnesium
  • Phosphorous
  • Potassium
  • Zinc
  • Copper
  • Manganese
  • Selenium

How to Calculate Glycemic Load of Barley?

The standard Glycemic index of barley is 20-22. The high glycemic index of the foods helps in reducing the risks related to cardiovascular diseases. If we want to talk about diet, the key to prevent diabetes or any chronic illness is to distribute the carbohydrate consumption content throughout the day and manage the sugar levels in the body correctly—however, the glycemic load for one cup of barley= 27 approximately and should be consumed in optimal portions.

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The Formula/Procedure For Calculation of Glycemic Index of the Barley : 

GL = GI * carbs / 100


  • GL – glycemic load;
  • GI – glycemic index;
  • and carbs – the amount of carbohydrates in the portion.
1.100 g of Barley14.6 (medium)
2.250 g of Barley36.5 (high)
3.500 g of Barley73 (very high)
4.1 Kg of Barley146 (very high)
5.1 Cup of Barley (180 g)27 (high)

Is Barley Safe to Consume If You Have Diabetes? 

Barley can help lower blood sugar levels and insulin levels, which can reduce the risk of diabetes. Whole-grain barley is an excellent source of fiber, which slows the absorption of sugar by binding with it in your digestive tract. A study has shown that women who ate both oats and barley decreased their glucose and insulin levels. Barley was seen to be very effective and reduced levels by an average of 60%. Also, barley has a fairly low Glycemic Index, which means that it does not cause any sudden spike in blood sugar levels.

Can I Eat Barley During a Fat-Loss Diet?

You can eat barley during a strict fat-loss diet. If you are looking for good results, you should avoid having more than 100 g of barley per serving.

Glycemic Index of Barley
Glycemic Index of Barley
  • A 100 g serving of barley has a GL of 14.6 which is in the permissible levels.
  • Barley is high fiber, which adds more volume to your diet and helps in weight loss.
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Can I Eat Barley During a Low-Carbohydrate Diet?

You can eat barley during a strict low-carb diet. However, the portion size of barley is something that you need to take into account. We suggest you consume barley water with not more than 20 g of barley.

Is Barley High in Sugar?

A 100 g of barley serving has 73.5 grams of carbs and only 0.8 g of sugar. Although it has a low content of sugar, it has a pretty high quantity of carbs. Carbs eventually burn down into sugar only.

This is a high-fiber grain that will help you reduce cholesterol and blood sugar levels. It also helps in weight loss and betters your digestion. It is nutritious and can be a substitution for any whole grain, and is easily added to your diet.