Why Go Whole Grain?

Everyone always says whole grains are better for you… but why exactly is this the case?  First off, bread is made from grain kernels, and within grain kernels, are three parts—the bran, the germ and the endosperm.

  • The bran and germ are the nutrient rich and fiber-dense parts
  • The endosperm is the starchy, carbohydrate part 

    Whole grains contain all three parts of the grain – the bran, germ and endosperm. By using the entire grain, nutritional value is maintained.

    Refined grains have been milled (ground into flour or meal) which rids the bran and germ, leaving only the endosperm.  Without the bran and germ, the grain loses 25% of the protein and many vitamins, minerals and fiber… leaving the grain significantly less nutritious.

Whole grains contain many disease fighting phyto-chemicals, antioxidants, vitamins, iron and fiber.  By choosing whole grains, you will not only reap the nutritional benefits, but also feel more full and won’t need to eat soon after.  Because whole grains hold much more nutritional value than refined grains, they significantly reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes and obesity.  Aim to get 3-5 servings a day.  If you are new to whole grains, start off slow and eventually, you will begin to love the heartiness and nuttiness in the whole grain products.
    Oats are always whole grain
    Food marketers are tricky.  Don’t be fooled, LOOK AT THE INGREDIENT LIST!
    • For breads, the first ingredient should begin with the word “whole.  (ex: whole grain, whole wheat)  If it begins with just “wheat”, it is made from refined wheat flour
    • For rice, the first ingredient word should be “brown
    • For oats, you are getting “whole oats” no matter what!
    “Unbleached wheat flour”, “wheat flour”, “Multigrain”, “Grain”, “natural” does NOT mean the product is from whole wheat!  Some examples of whole grains are: brown rice, whole wheat breads and pastas, oatmeal, buckwheat, wheat berry and barley
    Trader Joe’s has my favorite whole wheat pizza dough.  It makes pizza really easy to make, and healthy too!  It always comes out nice and crispy 🙂 

    half marinara, half pesto, loaded with veggies and chicken

    ready to eat!

    2 thoughts on “Why Go Whole Grain?

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