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Recent review reveals several putative biomarkers for whole grain intake

The current status on biomarkers of different cereals, fractions and specific cereal foods was recently summarized by, among other, a number of research members from the Nordic Rye Forum. The researchers conducted a literature review about potential biomarkers of the intakes of wheat, oats, rye, barley and rice and the pseudo-cereal quinoa as well as of different grain fractions (whole grain, refined grain, bran).

The role of cereals in human health is dependent on whether they are consumed as refined or whole grain and on cereal species. To unravel the underlying mechanisms of health effects attributed to specific cereal foods and to provide more precise dietary advice, there is a need for improved dietary assessment of whole-grain intake. Dietary biomarkers of specific cereals, different fractions or cereal-containing foods could offer such a possibility, the authors stated.

The results of the review showed that odd-numbered alkylresorcinols reflect whole-grain wheat and rye intake and are the most well-studied and -evaluated biomarkers. Even-numbered alkylresorcinols may, on the other hand, reflect quinoa intake. Avenanthramides and avenacosides show potential to be used as specific biomarkers of oat intake, while other compounds suggested to reflect other cereals such as rice, are too unspecific. Moreover, no biomarkers that reflect refined grains currently exist.

The researchers concluded that several putative biomarkers of different cereals exist that need to be validated in human studies by criteria recently developed for food intake biomarker validation.

Read more here:

Landberg, Genes Nutr: 2019.

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