June 13, 2024


Enriching Health Natural

The Good News About Healthy Eating

2 min read

Whole grain bread, cereal, and other grain foods are a much better choice than grains that are refined, such as white bread and white rice. The refining process strips grains of their bran and germ thereby removing fiber, antioxidants, minerals, and other health-protective compounds. People who eat diets based on refined grains tend to have a higher incidence of chronic diseases, such as adult-onset diabetes and heart disease.

Grains that are unrefined are excellent sources of carbohydrates, fiber, and B vitamins. They fuel your muscles, protect against muscular fatigue, and reduce problems with constipation due to the fiber content. They are also slower to digest than simple carbohydrates like white flour and white sugar. This will help you feel fuller longer. Despite popular belief, the carbohydrates in grains are not fattening; excess calories in the form of butter, mayonnaise, and gravy are what give carbohydrates a bad name. When selecting grains, try to choose ones that have only been lightly processed, if at all. Good choices include brown rice, whole-wheat bread, rye crackers, Triscuits (preferably low-fat), popcorn, corn tortillas, whole-wheat pita bread, bulgur, and barley. Of course, you should avoid smothering popcorn with butter and salt! Instead, consider sprinkling it with special ethnic seasonings or seasoned popcorn spray.

Read labels carefully. Note that “wheat” on a label may not mean “whole wheat”, and a dark color might be just from food coloring, so be sure to look for the word “whole” or “whole grain”. The word “multigrain” is also misleading. It doesn’t always mean the grains are whole, but just that there is more than one type of grain in the product.

Switching to 100{dc95c22c9cec96e4b887cb128e750bad45acd6bf2ff75ab29d9ade61e84bfb51} whole wheat bread and starting your day with a whole-grain cereal like Cheerios, Shredded Wheat, Raisin Bran, or oatmeal (the best choice), will easily put you in the recommended range of three daily servings of whole grains. Serve brown rice at dinner, make whole wheat pasta, try whole wheat couscous, and explore exotic grains like bulgur and quinoa (pronounced keen-wah).

Simple carbohydrate substitutions, not eliminations, will go far in sustaining your energy, avoiding afternoon “crashes”, keep you feeling fuller longer, and help you create a healthier you!

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