Cereal Fibre

Grains, especially whole grains, contain a range of dietary fibres important for health and prevention of disease. These include:

Soluble fibres such as:
  • B-glucan (found in oats and barley)
  • pentoses (found in rye)
  • arabinoxylans (found in barley, wheat and rye)
Insoluble fibres such as:
(found in most cereals, especially wheat bran, rice and maize)
  • lignins
  • cellulose
  • hemi-celuloses
Resistant starch, found in some cereals like:
  • corn
  • cooled cooked rice and maize
  • high amylose starch varieties of maize
  • high amylose rice
Smaller oligosaccharides such as:
(found in wheat, rye, oats and barley, with very young barley having high amounts)
  • fructooligosaccharides
  • inulin

While whole grains and bran products are higher in fibre, refined grain foods like white bread and pasta do still contain fibre. On average, refined grain foods on shelf in Australia contain one third of the fibre of whole grain foods.

Health Benefits of Cereal Fibre

Cereal fibre has a range of health benefits:

  • Lower risk of heart disease
  • Manage and reduce risk of type 2 diabetes
  • Protect against colorectal cancer
  • Reduced risk of early death
  • Reduced inflammation
  • Improved weight control
  • Improved digestive health
  • lower risk of digestive disorders
  • Enhanced immune function

There are several types of dietary fibre which act in different ways to improve digestive health and protect against disease. These include:

Fibre type and health benefits


The total amount of dietary fibre contained in different grains and pseudo-cereals varies:

Intact grain % Dietary Fibre
Barley 17.3%
Brown Rice 3.5%
Corn 7.3%
Millet 8.5%
Oats 10.6%
Rye 14.6%
Sorghum 9.0%
Triticale 14.6%
Wheat 12.2%
Amaranth 15.2%
Buckwheat 10.0%
Quinoa 5.9%

To view references click here.


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