Benefits of Barley Water for Digestion & Immunity
- Published on: 21 January, 2018
- Last update: 21 January, 2018
One of my nutritional textbooks has an index of “therapeutic liquids” in the back, and I was surprised to see “barley water” listed for chronic fatigue and poor digestion. I’ve had barley soup before, but never thought of boiling it alone into a tea-like broth!
Turns out, this drink is an ancient elixir that’s been used for centuries to strengthen the body all over the world.
- IT’S PACKED WITH IMMUNE-BOOSTING BETA GLUCANS – Beta glucans are naturally occurring sugars found in the cell wall of mushrooms and plants such as oats and barley. As an immune boosting agent, they activate & stimulate our own macrophages and natural killer cells (which go on to fight cancer and tumor formation)! They are often used medicinally for high cholesterol, diabetes, cancer, and HIV/AIDS. Beta glucans are especially helpful to bolster and strengthen the body in cases of chronic fatigue syndrome & other instances of physical and emotional stress.
- IT’S A DIGESTIVE TONIC – In Ayurveda, barley water is considered a digestive tonic, especially for those with low ‘Agni’ (digestive fire). The recipe below adds in additional warming herbs that strengthen the digestive force.
- SUPPORTS THE KIDNEYS & HELPS TREAT URINARY TRACT INFECTIONS – For centuries, barley water has been used to support and nourish the kidneys in times of stress. It soothes inflammation, clears heat, and helps flush harmful bacteria from the body
- LOWERS CHOLESTEROL & SUPPORTS HEALTHY WEIGHT LOSS – Drink before meals with lemon for maximum benefit.
- ½ cup pearl barley
- 5 cups filtered water
- ¼ cinnamon stick
- 3-4 slices of ginger
- juice of 1-2 lemons
Heat the barley, water, cinnamon stick and ginger slices in a pot on the stove and bring to a boil. Once boiling, lower the heat and simmer for 30 minutes, occasionally muddling the barley with a spoon. If you have organic unwaxed lemons, you can simmer the peel for the final 5 minutes which intensifies the taste.
After cooling, strain the mixture and add the juice of 1-2 lemons. Store in the fridge and drink 1-3 cups daily.