The Health Benefits of Bulgur Wheat

Updated on July 6, 2019
LoisRyan1965 profile image

Lois has over ten years' experience in the home/herbal remedy field. She seeks to inform her readers and help them to save money.

Bulgur wheat, a staple food in the Middle East, is naturally derived from Durum wheat grains. The wheat has a sweet nutty flavor and is an essential ingredient in Armenian, Assyrian, Kurdish, Syrian, Israeli, Palestinian, Lebanese, Turkish, Middle Eastern, and Mediterranean dishes including soup, salad, bread, and pilaf. Since bulgur wheat has a long shelf life, there's no concern about bulgur wheat going to waste. There are many health-related reasons why one should stock this staple.

Bulgur Wheat Salad
Bulgur Wheat Salad | Source

Bulgur Wheat is Heart Friendly

Bulgur wheat is rich in the Vitamin B group, which is necessary for the formation of red blood cells. If you want to maintain a healthy nervous system, the Vitamin B6 found in bulgur wheat plays a role in both cellular growth and repair. Since this wheat also contains folate, which plays a key role in making the cells in the body function properly, you are preventing damage to blood cells and preventing blood clots when you include this wheat in your diet. This, in turn, you may decrease the chance of getting a heart attack by at least thirty percent.

Bulgur wheat is also a major source of vitamin B3, which is also known as niacin. This vitamin is necessary for the proper function of cellular metabolism and helps repair cells and DNA. It is necessary for brain health and can prevent degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's from developing and reducing the onset of dementia. Niacin also plays a role in stabilizing blood sugar in diabetics. Individuals with this disease will benefit from this healthy staple. Another reason this wheat is heart friendly is the niacin helps reduce the amount of plaque build-up and also allows damaged blood vessels to heal.

Bulgur wheat is a major source of magnesium which plays a major role in your body. You need this mineral for healthy bones and teeth, body temperature, and regulating your blood sugar levels. If you do not have enough magnesium in your body, there can be an imbalance of potassium and calcium levels which can lead to a buildup of calcium in your kidneys. This calcium build up can lead to kidney stones. By including this staple in your diet, you may be able to prevent kidney stones. This magnesium also plays a role in keeping our blood pressure numbers at a safe level. The American Heart Association states that foods that contains magnesium play a key role in reducing blood pressure heart attacks and strokes.

Other Health Benefits

Bulgur wheat provides over 50% of your Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) in manganese. This mineral acts as an antioxidant by playing a role of protecting the tissues from radical damage. This mineral is needed for producing insulin and storing glucose in the liver and well as helping bone and connective tissues to develop properly.

The iron found in bulgur wheat also plays a role in forming red blood cells. The iron is responsible of converting blood sugar into energy. The iron is also a major component of hemoglobin which is responsible for oxygen levels within the red blood cells.

Bulgur wheat contains phosphorous. If you want to maintain strong bones and healthy teeth, you may want to consider adding this staple to your baker's rack. The phosphorous also plays a role in releasing energy within the cells. Since this wheat also contains 2% of your RDA in calcium. Four ounces gives you 5% of your RDA of calcium and more than 100% in Vitamin K, you may prevent osteoporosis when you get older. Not only is calcium is necessary for strong bones and teeth, we also need it to lower the levels of Low Density Lipoprotein (LDL), otherwise known as the bad cholesterol.

A cup of bulgur wheat gives you over 8 grams of fiber. Including this wheat in your daily diet can help play a role in preventing constipation and lowering blood cholesterol and blood pressure.

One cup of bulgur wheat provides 7% of your RDA In copper, If you do not have enough copper in your daily diets, you may notice those pesky gray hairs even at a young age. Using this wheat as an ingredient to your recipes may slow down the amount of gray hairs you get. Since this wheat is also high in zinc, you can maintain good eyesight and prevent conditions such as myocardial infarction by including it in your daily diet.


Cooking With Bulgur Wheat

Cooking with bulgur wheat is fairly simple. Since this wheat comes in a variety of grains, from fine to coarse, the cooking times vary. For example, the fine grain may take no more than five minutes and the coarsest grains may take up to twenty. As when you cook with rice, you normally would use two cups of water with one cup of wheat.

There are many dishes you can use bulgur wheat in. These include:

  • Pilafs
  • Porridges
  • Salads
  • Soups
  • Stews

It can even be used as a replacement for meals where you cook with rice.

For recipes using bulgur wheat, check out the link below:

Many health food stores carry bulgur wheat. You may even find this at grocery stores that carry Middle Eastern foods. If you have a grocery store that offers organic products, you might find this wheat either in the baking or cereal aisles


If you are required to eat gluten-free foods because of wheat allergies, avoid bulgur wheat.

If you suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome or Inflammatory Bowel Disease, you may not be able to tolerate the insoluble fiber content of bulgur wheat. If you want to introduce this to your diet, it is best to start out with a small amount to see how your body handles it.


This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2019 Lois Ryan


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    • Lorna Lamon profile image

      Lorna Lamon 

      12 months ago

      I was introduced to Bulgur wheat by a Lebanese friend and I use it in salads and stews. Great article.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 

      12 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Very cool. Bulgur is on my list. So nice to read your information.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      12 months ago from Sunny Florida

      I did not know bulgur wheat was so healthy. Thanks for a very good article about these benefits.


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