Cereals! They are one holy-grain option for those who prefer to have a healthy lifestyle. From breakfast to snacks and more, cereals are with various options filled with health benefits. But how many types of cereals do you know till now, or use in your regular everyday life? If it is only the usual ones like corn or wheat, you must know there are various other types too!
They can be an everyday staple in our diet and are a perfect rich source of minerals, proteins, carbs, vitamins, and more. Today, let us learn all the different kinds of cereal varieties around us.
Cereals: What Are They, The History Behind Them, And More
According to Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), cereals are those products that are harvested for dry grain. They belong to the gramineous family and are classified under fodder crops (1). There are various types of cereals popular in the world, the most common ones are wheat, Maize, corn, millet, barley, and more. Cereals are popular for delivering a high levels of nutrients easily into one’s body by their intake.
Besides the raw ones we know here generically, the processed cereals are those that we consume today as breakfast choices. They had existed in our world ever before since the 19th century, starting from America when there were not many fiber options in their diet. Cereals became the primary choice for many eventually in North America and Europe to fill in the dietary requirements and provide nourishment.
Different Best Types Of Cereal Grains In The World
We learnt briefly what cereal grains are. Now, let us understand the various types of cereals in the world and their facts. Here we go with types of cereals and pictures!
Wheat is the most common among cereal varieties and is a widely grown crop across the globe. But if you think wheat a homogeneous category is, you got it wrong. Again, there are different types of wheat within them, from bread wheat to durum, including emmer, Kamut, and einkorn. The primary purpose of wheat is for human consumption. The main seasons for wheat are both spring and winter.The crop is present in several parts of the globe, tropical, subtropical, and temperate regions. Major countries that produce wheat include China, India, Russia, the US, Canada, Pakistan, Australia, and Germany. Wheat also boasts several health benefits that make it great to consume, besides the culinary applications. The health benefits include wheat being low in fat, sodium-free, rich in potassium, dietary fiber, zinc, magnesium and more (2).
Oats are increasingly becoming popular around the globe for their consumption. The oats flour and oatmeal are often popular among the contemporary youth, for their excellent health and nutrition benefits, besides the easy process of substituting them with other cereals. Oats consist of several health benefits, primarily reducing cholesterol levels, increasing insulin response, and improving blood sugar (3). This cereal is famous in cold regions, and the northern regions of the globe constitute more than half of its production. Russa, the USA, Canada, Finland, and Poland are the top countries that produce oats mainly. In India, northern parts of states such as Punjab, Haryana, UP, and MP have oat production.
See More: Types Of Flour And Their Uses
Barley is a lesser-known cereal in the western world and more popular in Asian countries. It is the newfound love cereal for many, especially those who prefer to have a low or no gluten diet. Barley consists of several health benefits such as being rich in minerals, lignans that are antioxidants protecting the body against cancer and heart disease-causing concerns, improving intestinal health, lowering blood sugar and cholesterol (4). India is among the topmost countries cultivating Barley. Barley is famous for several uses, such as livestock, malt purposes, and preparing human food.
Rye is another new-age upcoming cereal that is most preferred by those who love a gluten-free diet. It is a unique cereal grain that consists of a huge amount of fiber in its bran. As a result, rye cereals’ glycemic index is much less than other grains. As a result, rye is dense in vitamins, minerals and reduces the risk of LDL cholesterol, cardiovascular diseases, and constipation (5). Europe and America are famous for growing Rye. However, the usage of Rye is mainly for making beer, whisky, and bread.
Sorghum, otherwise also known as Sorghum, is the popular cereal option for many. It is a very ancient and age-old grain in the millet family that is far away from its presence in refined products. Sorghum or Jowar has the goodness of high levels of manganese and calcium levels. The regular consumption of jowar is also beneficial to avoid diabetes and other cholesterol-related illnesses (6).
Corn or Maize is another popular grain and cereal we often come across. This is, in fact, very famous in the list of breakfast cereal options in many countries. Corn has a very high amount of fiber and minerals such as copper, iron, manganese, magnesium, and zinc, which aid digestion and gut health. The antioxidants and high levels of fiber in corn also help in other concerns such as managing weight, cancer risk, and others.
Quinoa is a newfound love for many millennials. The high range of nutrients and health benefits make it among the most preferred cereal for several women and men across the globe. It is gluten-free, very high in protein, and also has a high range of amino acids. The other essential nutrients quinoa consist of include vitamins, potassium, antioxidants, calcium, iron, fiber. These aid in weight loss, managing blood sugar control and improving metabolic health (7). The top countries that produce quinoa the most include Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru.
Buckwheat is a gluten-free cereal that is nutritious, just like the other varieties. It is mainly grown as a grain in many countries and is an excellent choice for those who prefer a dietary alternative without gluten. Buckwheat consists of a high range of fiber and niacin that aids in digestive health and weight control/management. The cereal also is perfect for aiding in blood glucose levels and is an excellent choice to make several culinary items (8). This crop is mainly grown in areas that are with cool climatic conditions.
Millets are quite a popular grain in India. There are several types of millets, all of which are round small-sized coarge grains, high in proteins, and can be grown quickly. The popular types of millets include Kodo millet, little millet, pearl millet, foxtail millet, ragi, and others. They are ancient knowledge of having heavy nutrients and low glycemic index. Millets aid in weight loss, manage blood sugar levels, reduce any risk of heart concerns, and promote digestive health (9). Millets are popular for both preparing human food and also as feed for birds.
See More: Mushroom Varieties in the World
Triticale is a new type of cereal that comes between wheat and rye. It consists of a very high amount of proteins than other cereals, making it most popular in recent days. It looks very similar to wheat in color and shape; however, it is a bit plumper and longer. The health benefits include controlling blood sugar levels, digestive health, and heavy amounts of minerals and vitamins that improve blood circulation (10).
We, of course, cannot forget the rice. It is the most popular and commonly used choice across the globe. One can consume rice in several forms, such as husked, broken, glute, and more. In addition, it has several culinary applications, making it among versatile grains. Production of rice also takes place in several parts of the globe. The top producers are countries such as India, China, Bangladesh (Asian countries being the largest producer), and other North American and European regions.
Fonio is a lesser-known type of cereal, popular only in a few places such as South Africa. It is a popular grain during extraordinary situations like famines. It is an alternative to rice consumption in such places. This different types of cereal grains can grow only in dry climatic conditions that don’t require any irrigation.
Types Of Breakfast Cereals:
Now that we have explored types of cereals let us also learn about breakfast cereals and their kinds. These have definitely made our lives much more accessible, being very quick to prepare yet high in nutritional content. However, among different classifications of these, the popular types of breakfast cereals include,
1. Hot Cereals:
As the name suggests, these can be eaten hot. They are either wholesome, sugary, processed, or unprocessed, depending on the type of cereal variety.
2. Whole-Grain Cereal:
These are healthier in variation compared to other types. They are unprocessed, in whole grain, filled with vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients. As a result, they can help our body to remain full for a longer time yet aid in managing weight and reducing sugar.
3. Bran Cereal:
The types of bran cereals are perfect for those who have a bad digestive system and are searching for something high in fiber and aids in digestion and constipation.
4. Sugary Cereal:
As one can guess, sugary cereal has high quantities of sugar. These are mainly ideal for children, making them have food intake besides any cereal inclusion in them. These are processed ones.
5. Organic Cereal:
We see several of our peers running behind organic food items, given their benefits for health. We even have organic cereals grown without artificial pesticides, fertilizers, or without producing, along with preservatives.
See More: Types Of Oranges Names List
So, these are the different kinds and types of cereals popular across the globe. We hope you enjoyed reading and learning about them today. Which is your favorite cereal you prefer to consume frequently? Let us know your thoughts and ideas in the comments section below.
1. Are cereals good to be consumed at night?
Ans: It depends on the type of cereal you are consuming. It is ideal to consume at night in most cases, especially if it is whole-grain cereal or unprocessed cereal.
2. Can kids have cereals regularly?
Ans: Yes, cereals are popular as they are very rich in nutrients, with several health benefits. Therefore, it is suitable for children to consume them regularly.
3. What is the world’s oldest cereal?
Ans: Rice is among the age-old and ancient types of cereal variety popular in human consumption for several centuries.
This is exclusively a guide about types of cereals for informative purposes only. The opinions and overview in this article are provided from various sources across the web. The author does not guarantee or promise any accuracy of facts provided in this article.