Types of Wheat: Nutritional Content & Health Benefits Comparison

by admin

For over 7,000 years, mankind has cultivated and developed wheat for breads and cereals.  Today, we consume more wheat, as a percentage of our daily diet, than any other food.  Just think about that and the effects wheat can have on our health – good or bad!

We All Love Bread

Wheat Bread, just one of the many ways we like to eat different types of wheat

I’ve been researching the nutritional content of 19 different types of wheat, and I’ve included a link to all of my findings in this post.  This post focuses on the nutritional content and health benefits of einkorn wheat compared with the common types of wheat of which most of our food from the grocery store is made.

In doing my research, it is easy to see why there has been renewed worldwide interest in ancient einkorn wheat.  The interest comes not only from einkorn’s unique gluten structure but also it’s incredible nutritional qualities.

Here are some interesting facts I learned about the nutritional content and health benefits of einkorn:

  • Wheat gluten studies have found einkorn wheat may be non-toxic to suffers of gluten intolerance
  • Einkorn wheat has 14 chromosomes while modern wheats have 42 (Friendly to the body’s digestive system)
  • Einkorn contains 3 to 4 times more beta-carotene than modern wheats (Boosts immunity, helps prevent cancer and heart disease)
  • Einkorn contains 2 times more Vitamin A (retinol equivalent) than modern wheats (Healthy eyes, reproductive organs and prevention of many cancers)
  • Einkorn contains 3 to 4 times more lutein than modern wheats (Prevention of macular degeneration and cataracts)
  • Einkorn contains 4-5 times more riboflavin than modern wheats (Used by the body to create energy and is an antioxidant that slows aging)
  • Einkorn is a “hulled” wheat, whereas modern wheats are not.  The hull can protect the grain from stray chemical contamination and insects making it an easier grain to grow ORGANICALLY!

Einkorn vs Major Types of Wheat Comparison Matrix

Brief Comparison of Einkorn and Major Types

Brief Comparison of Einkorn and Major Types of Wheat

See my full nutritional matrix comparing 19 types of wheat (pdf), including einkorn wheat.  This matrix also includes my sources and references.

26 Responses leave one →
  1. John D. permalink
    January 5, 2010

    I didn’t realize einkorn was so nutritious (compared to the other types of wheat). Thanks for sharing this information.

  2. Tom permalink
    January 13, 2010

    The most beneficial aspect is the fiber content of ancient wheats. In the ancient world much of the wheat was ground with the husk increasing the fiber content considerably. So although humans are not designed to eat wheat, cooking it reduces the toxin levels to tolerable ranges and the extra fiber moved it through the system quickly.

    Today’s ultra refined, naked whats amount to rocket fuel. This is not only a fuel we did not evolve to eat, modern wheat offers too little fiber to move it through the system quickly.

    • Stan Ness permalink
      January 21, 2010

      Speaking of rocket fuel… Whenever I eat a bowl of cold cereal, like rice Chex or something similar, I get a serious sugar crash about 3 hours later. I get jittery and have a hard time thinking straight. This doesn’t happen when I eat whole-grain stuff that I make myself. I’m guessing it’s the amount of sugar and carbs combined.

      • Laura H permalink
        February 4, 2013

        Your blood sugar rises dramatically and along with it so do your insullin levels. When the sugar crash happens your insullin has done a remarkable job… too well indeed and has brought your sugar levels too low. What happens next is the body wants more carbs. This causes a roller coaster ride of spiking sugar and insullin levels through out the day.

  3. Nasir permalink
    May 22, 2010

    Great. Thank-you. Where can one find this in stores? What brands etc.

  4. Judith Bellville permalink
    November 28, 2010

    What is the long-term storage life for Elkhorn wheat? Hard red winter wheat and hard white wheat are each 30 years. How does Elkhorn compare?

  5. January 13, 2012

    In your detailed PDF chart it shows Durum Wheat has nearly all Vitamins and Minerals in larger quantity then Einkorn. Can you please shed some light on that.

  6. Erin permalink
    January 17, 2012

    What does it take to grow Einkorn? If I ordered the berries, could I grow it? What kind of climate does it like, etc.?

    • admin permalink*
      March 5, 2012

      Erin, it likes cool, dry climates

  7. Brenda permalink
    March 5, 2012

    Since sugars in the Einkorn is higher than other grains listed how does that effect the glycemic index in the blood stream? What part of the grain stores these sugars?

    Thank you,


    • admin permalink*
      March 5, 2012

      Brenda, On this topic, Dr. William Davis shared the experience a friend of his had with einkorn:

      This past Friday, June 18th, I conducted my “Einkorn Wheat Experiment”.
      7 am
      FBG [fasting blood glucose] 97 mg/dl

      8 am-9 am
      1 hour high-intensity aerobic workout

      10:05 am
      BG 99

      10:05 am
      I embarked upon the journey of choking down, I mean enjoying, the hefty piece of Einkorn bread. Wow, was that bread dense! It was a lot of work chewing.

      10:50 am
      (45 minutes after consumption, wanted to see what BG did a bit before the 1 hr mark) BG 153

      11:05 am
      1hr PP 120

      11:35 am
      90 mins PP [postprandial] 113

      12:05 pm
      2 hours PP 114 … at this time I ate an egg & veggie omelet for lunch.

      12:50 pm
      BG 100

      Before dinner 5:10 pm
      BG 88
      I was surprised with the BG of 153. However, it was good to see my insulin response is reactive and decreased BG 33 points in 15 minutes to end up with a BG of 120 1 hr after the bread.

      So, it appears my response is similar. A slight elevation of BG at the 1 hour mark, but not to the degree of conventional whole grain wheat bread.

      Of note, also, was the fact that I cannot remember the last time I ate a piece of wheat bread of this magnitude that did not make me bloated… not at all: No cramps, no brain fog, no headache and, did I mention not bloated?

      I believe you are on to something with tolerance of Einkorn wheat for those of us with wheat sensitivities, in addition to its apparent lower glycemic response.

  8. Laura H permalink
    February 4, 2013

    I’d like to know the carbohydrate count. The advanced chart says “no data” in that column. Why do we know the fiber and sugars but not the carb count?

  9. bob permalink
    July 5, 2013


  10. August 16, 2013

    Why does the increased number of chromosomes make modern wheats harder to digest?

    • admin permalink*
      August 24, 2013

      Introduction of the D genome in hexaploid and tetraploid wheats is possibly the reason. Detection of an unacceptable level of the D genome, is the basis for detection of gluten in gluten-free facilities. Einkorn does not contain the D genome

  11. TAPANJYOTI permalink
    January 4, 2015


  12. Shelley C. Giebel, MD permalink
    March 17, 2015

    Wish you would include that Einkorn has a higher protein to carbohydrate ratio (28% vs 10%) compared to dwarf wheat species. This is the critical reason why blood sugar results in high insulin, the cause of a vast number of diseases of civilization…heart disease, diabetes, cancer, obesity to name a few.

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