According to the National Barley Foods Council, this delicious grain contains important B vitamins, essential minerals and is an excellent source of fiber, having fiber throughout the entire grain, unlike other grains that contain fiber only in the outer coating. Barley also contains antioxidants. The soluble fiber in barley lowers blood cholesterol, making barley heart-healthy. It slows the absorption of sugar, which is beneficial for diabetics, and it reduces the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. Insoluble fiber in barley provides roughage, which aids in digestion.