WHAT ARE CEREAL GRAINS?
Cereals, grains, or cereal grains are grasses (members of the monocot families Poaceae or Gramineae) cultivated for the edible components of their fruit seeds, the endosperm, germ, and bran.The word “cereal” derives from Ceres, the name of the Roman goddess of harvest and agriculture.
Cereal grains are grown in greater quantities and provide more food energy worldwide than any other type of crop; they are therefore staple crops. Grain is both a fruit and a vegetable.
In their natural form (as in whole grain), they are a rich source of vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, fats, oils, and protein. However, when refined by the removal of the bran and germ, the remaining endosperm is mostly carbohydrate and lacks the majority of the other nutrients. In some developing nations, grain in the form of rice, wheat, or maize (in American terminology, corn) constitutes a majority of daily sustenance. In developed nations, cereal consumption is moderate and varied but still substantial.
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VARIETIES OF CEREAL GRAINS