About this Research Topic
Cereals are a staple food group in the dietary intake of humans worldwide. The macronutrients found in cereals such as starch, protein, and lipids determine the cooking, eating, processing characteristics, and nutritional quality of the end-use products. The minor components in cereals such as vitamins, minerals, polyphenols and other phytochemicals are also important determinants of the nutritional quality of the product. Whole grain cereals in particular have been receiving increased attention from both consumers and researchers as the phytochemicals present in cereals (e.g. vitamins, polyphenols) have also been found to have antioxidant capacities and health benefits against some human epidemiological diseases such as diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular diseases, etc.
The major and minor nutrients differ among different cereals and different cultivars of the same species, and the variation of which is affected by crop growing environments. The genetic diversity in the nutrient compositions of cereals in relation to their food chemistry, subsequent nutritional properties, and health benefits has been moderately understood in staple cereals like rice, corn and wheat. However minor cereals such as barley, sorghum, oat, millets, rye, and pseudocereals such as buckwheat, quinoa, and amaranth are still not fully understood and in need of further exploring. Furthermore, changes in diversity or evolution of nutrients profiles during post-harvest processing such as drying, storage and milling, and during traditional (such as noodle, bread, biscuits, bread and pasta) and new or special product development (such as sprouted cereals) have less understood in terms of genotypic diversity if involved.
This Research Topic therefore aims to provide a broad forum to explore novel research exploring the compositional diversity in cereals, the structural and functional characterization of their food components and their potential health benefits. With highlights of the importance of their diversity in the context of food chemistry, food safety, human health, the effects of the environment where cereals grow, and food processing they undergo on their nutritional properties and quality to also be considered.
We welcome contributions (original research, reviews, and mini reviews) covering but not limited to any of the following sub themes:
• Advanced analytical techniques (e.g. HPLC, MS, Omics, etc.) in qualitative and quantitative characterization of phytochemicals in cereals.
• Genotypic diversity and the impact of cereal growth environment on the phytochemicals in cereal grain and cereal based food products.
• Effect of post-harvest processing or food processing on the evolution of nutrient profiles in relation to genotypic diversity.
• The structure function relations for identified phytochemicals or nutrients in cereal species.
Keywords: Cereals, Genetic Diversity, Nutritional Quality, Health Benefits
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.