Giovanna Basile, Azzurra Chiara De Maio, Alessia Catalano*, Jessica Ceramella, Domenico Iacopetta, Daniela Bonofiglio, Carmela Saturnino and Maria Stefania Sinicropi Pages 3384 - 3403 ( 20 )
In the context of a balanced diet, wheat, mainly used as whole grains, is a good source of nutrients, including fibers and bioactive compounds. Cereals belong to the Poaceae family and are crucial for maintaining a healthy status, granted by their nutritional and chemical properties. Recent studies have demonstrated that the intake of whole grains and grain-based products may reduce the risk of oxidative stress, thus lowering chronic and age-related disorders, such as obesity, cardiovascular diseases, type II diabetes and cancer. Indeed, several studies report that regular whole grain consumption is associated with lower levels of total and LDL-cholesterol, triglycerides, fasting glucose, blood pressure and body mass index. Moreover, ancient wheat species have become increasingly interested in human health, containing several nutraceutical compounds, such as vitamins and minerals. The numerous phytochemicals present in ancient wheat (polyphenols, carotenoids, phytosterols and phenolic compounds) provide, in fact, antioxidant properties, which are essential in the prevention of various chronic and degenerative diseases. This review aims to report information on ancient wheat species, discussing their composition and nutraceutical properties compared with modern varieties and highlighting the beneficial impact on human health.
Wheat, ancient wheat, cereals, whole grain, nutraceuticals, ferulic acid, carotenoids, antioxidants, human health.