The Nutraceutical Role of Wheat Grains
Wheat is one of the most important food crops worldwide due to its wide use. Often, it is perceived only as a food instrument, but the biochemical properties of the wheat grain recommend it as a nutraceutical tool. Starting from the morphology and structure of the wheat grain, in addition to the major composition of the endosperm which is rich in protein and starch, the outer layers of the grain represent a rich variety of biochemical constituents that can have beneficial effects on health. The outer pericarp consists mainly of cellulose, arabinoxylan and lignin with carbohydrate and phenolic acid compositions, a high concentration of ferulic acid has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. On the other hands, at the test level there is a significant source of lignin that has both an antioxidant role and a protective role against the development of various diseases and viral infections. Aleurone layer, as the main wheat bran contains a wide variety of biochemical compounds and vitamins with a role in the biofortification of the human body. The wheat embryo contains a good level of tocopherols, phytosterols, policosanols, thiamin, riboflavin and other bioactive compounds with significant role in prevention of diseases such as colon and breast cancers, cardiovascular disease, obesity and gastrointestinal diseases.