Spelled wheat, also known as a spear, is a rich source of B vitamins.

Spelled wheat, also known as a spikelet, is a rich source of B vitamins – riboflavin, niacin and thiamine, as well as iron, manganese, copper and an amino acid called tryptophan. In addition, spelled compared to ordinary wheat contains more protein.

Spelled is an ancient wheat variety that has been forgotten for many decades and has not undergone any modifications, which is why it is considered to be much healthier grain than common wheat.” Currently, spelled grows again due to the growing interest in pro-health food.


Spelled – origin and cultivation

Spelled (Triticum spelta), also known as a spit, is an ancient variety of wheat, and its correct name is spelled wheat. It is considered a healthier variety of common wheat. This cereal was grown widely from the Bronze Age (around 3400 BC – around 1200- 750 BC) and was very popular in Europe until medieval times.

The earliest archaeological discoveries on spelled are dated to 5000 BC and were made in the Trans-Black Sea region, probably from these regions of Spelled spread to central Europe, where it was themost commonly cultivated cerealin the present German and Swiss areas. 500 years BC spelled began to grow in Great Britain.

Spelled was cultivated until the 20th century, and since then it has gradually been replaced by common wheat, which was easier to grow and yielded more. In the 1970s, spelled was practically no longer cultivated, and improved wheat was replaced.

In the US, re-introductions of this cereal to the market began in 1987, seeking healthier food.In 2007, spelled was grown in Europe for 18 thousand hectares, and in Poland on 200-300 hectares, mainly on organic farms.

On the other hand, wheat was cultivated in Poland for 2.3 million hectares in a similar period. Spelled is a grain that has not been genetically modified, its structure has not been interfered with, hence the growing interest in this grain from supporters of a healthy lifestyle and so-called clean food.

Nowadays you can buy spelled products mainly in the” bio “and” eco “sections of supermarkets and online stores, but their price is even 3-4 times higher than in regular wheat products.


Nutritional value of spelled

A glass of cooked spelled (194 g) provides 246 kcal, contains mainly complex carbohydrates, but at the same time is a very good source of protein, dietary fiber, manganese (106% of recommended daily intake of RDI), phosphorus (29% RDI), magnesium (24% RDI), zinc (22% RDI), iron (18% RDI) and vitamin B3 (25% RDI).

It also contains small amounts of calcium, selenium, vitamins B1, B6 and E. Orkisz and wheat are characterized by a similar content of vitamins, minerals and phytosterols.

Spelled belongs to the same family as wheat, but its supporters emphasize that it has not been subjected to any modifications, hence it does not negatively affect the body analogically to wheat. Spelled beans look different than wheat grains, cereals have different DNA and differ in the profile of ingredients nutrients.

Spelled is characterized by higher protein content than wheat and an extremely nutritious aleurone layer in grains. The amino acid composition is different from wheat protein, spelled contains a lot of lysine and methionine (essential amino acids supplied with the diet and not man-made), which lack wheat.

Spelled proteins have a different molecular structure, are more fragile and more easily soluble, therefore they are better absorbed in the gastrointestinal tract. Approximately 80% of spelled proteins are gluten proteins (glutenin and gliadin), which occur in different proportions than in wheat.



Gluten in spelled

Due to the presence of spelled gluten, it may be as inadvisable as wheat for people suffering from celiac disease and gluten intolerance.However, reports from mainly areas of holistic medicine and naturopathy show that spelled gluten does not cause adverse effects and deterioration of well-being, even for ill persons.Probably the body’s reaction to spelled is very individual and depends on the level of gluten intolerance by a given person.


The content of macronutrients in spelled and wheat

Ingredient Wheat Spelled

Starch% dry mass SM 63 62

Sugars% SM 3.3 2.2

Carbohydrates% SM 66.5 66.1

Total fiber% SM 14.9 10.9

Soluble fiber% SM 11.2 9.3

Insoluble fiber SM SM 1.7 1.7

Protein% SM 14.9 15.6

Proportion of gliadins to glutenins 21 3.51

Fat% SM 2.1 2.5

Sterole μg / g SM 528-959 527-963


The content of vitamins and minerals in spelled and wheat

Ingredient Wheat Spelled

Calcium mg / 100 g 34 27

Iron mg / 100 g 5.4 4.44

Magnesium mg / 100 g 90 136

Phosphorus mg / 100 g 402 401

Potas mg / 100 g 435 388

Sodium mg / 100 g 2 8

Zinc mg / 100 g 3.5 3.28

Vitamin B1 (thiamine) mg / 100 g 0.4 0.364

Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) mg / 100 g 0.1 0.113

Vitamin B3 (Niacin) mg / 100 g 4.8 6.843

Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) mg / 100 g 0.4 0.230

Folic acid μg / 100 g 41 45

Vitamin A IU 9 10

Vitamin E mg / 100 g 1 0.79

Vitamin K μg / 100 g 1.9 3.6


Health benefits of eating spelled

Many of the positive health effects of eating spelled are due to the presence of fiber in it, especially the soluble fraction, and the content of minerals and some vitamins is important, and similar benefits can come from eating whole grains of other cereals.

The distinctive substance of spelled is rhodanide – a compound with the action of a natural antibiotic, which is also found in blood, saliva and breast milk, rhodanide stimulates the immune system, protects the breastfed infant from infections, influences blood production and normal growth and development of the young body. Eating spelled can bring benefits in many aspects.

regulating the rhythm of defecation due to the presence of dietary fiber, which increases the volume of stool, faster passage of the digestive tract through the intestines, prevents constipation and is helpful in excessive bloating

reducing the risk of colorectal cancer by shortening the contact of fecal masses with the gut and the time of penetration of toxins into its cells

lowering the level of cholesterol in the blood, which is affected by high content of soluble fiber and niacin, which also inhibits the action of free radicals from oxidized cholesterol

reducing the risk of atherosclerosis and cardiovascular events

improving blood circulation and reducing the risk of anemia due to the high content of iron and copper – elements involved in the production of red blood cells.The greater the number of red blood cells enables better oxygenation of cells and tissues, increased energy levels, accelerated metabolism and general well-being.

effect on the hormonal system through niacin necessary for its functioning, and especially for the production of sex hormones

stimulation of the immune system by thiamine in the case of inflammation and chronic stress and silencing of the negative effects of these conditions

controlling the level of sugar in the blood and body weight through fiber, which slows the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream and increases the feeling of satiety after a meal.


Worth knowing

Other ancient varieties of wheat

Flathead (farro) – is one of the oldest cereals cultivated already 9-10 thousand years BC in Egypt, Palestine and Mesopotamia.It gave rise to durum wheat and spelled.It has a much harder cover than modern wheat, contains more minerals and pro-health antioxidants.It can be protective and prevent tumors of the digestive tract.

kamut – is an ancient variety of durum wheat.He was mainly cultivated in Egypt and Mesopotamia.It has twice the size of grain and contains much more protein than common wheat.It is rich in selenium, zinc and magnesium.Gourmets will appreciate its nutty aftertaste.


Application of spelled

Spelled has a slightly sweet taste and nutty aroma, which can be its big advantage.” In most good bakeries bread and spelled rolls are available. Spelled beans are processed similar to other cereals. It can be used in the kitchen in the form of spelled flakes and semolina to popular oatmeal and mix with nuts and fruits, composing muesli.

Spelled groats, which contain a lot of fiber and protein, will work as an addition to the main course. It is best to rinse it first to remove impurities and boil 1 cup of porridge in 3 glasses of water on a low heat to completely absorb the liquid.

Spelled flour is ideal for baking bread, tarts and muffins. Spelled flour is available both wholemeal (eg type 1850, 2000) and light, made from grains without bran (eg type 405, 650). In some stores, especially online, you can buy pasta with spelled flour and crisps, crackers, pretzels, biscuits, crispbread, sponge wafers and various types of cookies.

Spelled is even made from coffee, which is available in a granular, ground and soluble form. The methods of using spelled in various diets and numerous recipes present publications on the diet of St. Hildegard – a medieval nun who promoted a spicy diet as a long-lasting diet. and a healthy life.



1. Escarnot E. et al., Comparative study of the content and profiles of biotechnologies, Agronomies, Societe et Environnement, 2012, 16 (2), 543-256

2. Kohajdova Z. et al., Nutritional value and baking applications of spelled wheat, Technologia Alimentaria, 2008, 7 (3), 5-14

3. Biel W., et al., Journal of Integrative Agriculture, 2015, 1, 1-7,” The influence of selected agronomic factors on the chemical composition of spelled wheat (Triticum aestivum ssp. Spelta L.)

4. West H., What is Spelt, and is it Good For You ?, https // authoritynutrition.com /what-is-spelt/

5. SELF Nutrition Data, Wheat soft white, uncooked Nutrition Facts and Calories http // nutritiondata.self.com / facts / cereal-grains-and-pasta / 5740/2

6. SELF Nutrition Data, Spelt, uncooked Nutrition Facts and Calories http // nutritiondata.self.com / facts / cereal-grains-and-pasta / 10355/2

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