When you went to the supermarket recently did you wonder what has happened in our bread aisle, loaf upon loaf upon loaf now greet us, what used to be a simple task has now turned into a mammoth mission involving a lot of patience, concentration and a good pair of reading glasses. It’s hard to tell what is good for you and has the most nutrition.
To help you along here is what you need to know:
What is the difference between whole grain, whole wheat and Multigrain:
Whole grain has the entire kernel of the grain from the bran to the endosperm to the germ. Whole grain flour is not refined and therefore maintains its full nutritional value.
Whole wheat has the bran and the germ removed during the refining process and is left containing only the endosperm. Unfortunately, the majority of vitamins and fiber are contained in the wheat bran and wheat germ that is shed during the refining process. Whole wheat flour has half of the nutrients stripped away during the refining process.
Multigrain bread is bread that is made with more than one type of grain. Multiple grain products can be made in any fashion, including bleaching and starching and using the less nutritious part of the grain. This product maybe refined which means the healthy parts, such as the germ and bran are removed and the grain is enriched with chemicals and bleached. Don’t be quick to assume that multigrain products are healthy products. We know they can be made in multiple fashions, and could contain as much refined grains that are devoid of nutrition as the basic bleached white flour. You can’t even assume that at least your getting some grains and their nutrients, because you may only be getting as few as two different grains. And, if the grains are refined, they’ll be lacking in original nutrients and fiber.
Next time you are at the supermarket here is what you need to look for:
- Don’t forget the 100% rule, First ingredient should be 100% whole grain. By law the ingredients must be listed in descending order, by how much they weigh in the product. This means that the first ingredient is the most prevalent ingredient in the product.
- Low or no sugar. Sugar is not great in any diet, as someone I know used to call it “white death”. Sugar is high in calories which can cause you to gain weight. Sugar suppresses the immune system and also raises insulin levels.
- High in fiber. Research has shown a diet adequate in fiber may reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and constipation. It is a safe and natural way to keep your blood sugar levels and cholesterol within a normal range.
So remember when you are out shopping:
100% whole grain, no sugar and high fiber at the top of the ingredients list, and don’t even think about that white loaf.
Good luck shopping.