How to Add Whole Grains to Your Diet
Getty Images Plus/Getty Images/Anna Shepulova/iStock/Getty Images Increasing the amount of whole grains in your family’s meals is a wise decision. Not only do whole grains provide the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients necessary to keep your family healthy, but they also contain dietary fiber, which may lower your risk of heart disease, certain cancers, diabetes, and other health problems, such as constipation, by decreasing your intake of these foods. Whole grains and refined grains are the two subcategories of grains that are available.
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans for the years 2020-2025 indicate that you consume half of your grains as whole grains, thus wherever feasible, prefer whole grains over refined grain products such as white flour.
How to Find Whole Grains
Don’t be deceived by the appearance of colors. Being brown does not necessarily imply that the bread is whole-wheat, and being white does not necessarily imply that the bread is composed only of refined white flour. Finding whole-grain bread necessitates the use of label-reading abilities. Any bread branded “whole wheat” must be produced entirely of whole-wheat flour in order to be considered such. What’s more, did you know that even though bread labels state “seven grain” or “multigrain,” these do not necessarily imply that the product is made entirely of whole grains?
Add Whole Grains to Your Meals
Do you want to include more whole grains in your diet? Improve the nutritional value of your meals by include more whole grains in your cooking and increasing the dietary fiber level. Whole grains should be served with vegetables, such as brown rice and vegetable stir-fry or a whole-wheat pita loaded with lettuce and tomatoes. Fortify mixed foods with high-fiber items such as bran or oats, or put cooked quinoa or wheat berries into a salad to make it more filling and nutritious. Are you looking for new methods to incorporate whole grains into half of your family’s diet?
- Begin with a hearty breakfast. Choose a high-fiber, whole-grain breakfast cereal, such as oatmeal or whole-wheat toast, for your morning meal. Check the amount of dietary fiber in each serving
- More fiber will help you feel fuller for a longer period of time. When choosing breads, buns, bagels, tortillas, pastas, and other grains, choose whole grains over processed grains. Consider trying other grains such as buckwheat, bulgur, millet, quinoa, sorghum, whole rye or barley to see which ones you like most. Cook extra bulgur or barley and freeze half of it to heat and serve later as a simple side dish to save time. Snack on nutritious grains to keep your energy levels up. Air-popped popcorn is classified as a whole grain since it has 3.5 g of dietary fiber and just 95 calories per cup (three cups of microwave popcorn contains 3.5g of dietary fiber). Additionally, whole-wheat or rye crackers made entirely of whole grains are recommended.
The whole truth about whole grains
Learn why whole grains are preferable than processed grains and how to include more of them into your diet. Staff at the Mayo Clinic All forms of grains are rich sources of complex carbohydrates as well as certain essential vitamins and minerals, but whole grains, which are the healthiest types of grains, are particularly helpful in maintaining a healthy weight and maintaining good health. Grains are naturally high in fiber, which helps you feel full and content for longer periods of time, making it simpler to maintain a healthy weight.
According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, you should consume whole grains in at least half of your total grain intake. The majority of individuals do not consume enough whole grains; thus, learn how to incorporate more whole grains into your healthy diet.
Types of grains
Cereals, grains, and whole grains are the seeds of grasses that have been grown for human use. Grains and whole grains are available in a variety of forms and sizes, ranging from enormous popcorn kernels to tiny quinoa seeds.
- Whole grains are a type of grain that contains no refined grains. Each of these grains is either present in its entirety or processed into a flour while keeping all of the seed’s constituent elements (bran, germ and endosperm). Comparatively speaking, whole grains are more nutritious than other types of grains in terms of fiber and other vital elements such as B vitamins, iron, folate, selenium, potassium, and magnesium, among other things. The term “whole grain” refers to meals that are either entire foods (like brown rice and popcorn) or ingredients in products (like buckwheat flour in pancakes or whole-wheat flour in bread). Grain that has been refined. Refined grains are those that have had the germ and bran removed, giving them a finer texture and allowing them to last longer on the shelf. In addition to removing several minerals, such as fiber, the refining process eliminates many other nutrients. White flour, white rice, and white bread are all examples of refined grains. Refined grains, also known as enriched grains, are used in a variety of baked goods such as breads, cereals, crackers, sweets, and pastries. The term “enriched” refers to the fact that some of the nutrients lost during processing have been replenished. Some enhanced grains have B vitamins added back in to replace those lost during milling. It is possible to fortify food by adding nutrients that do not naturally present in the diet. Most refined grains are enhanced, and many enriched grains are further fortified with extra vitamins and minerals, such as folic acid and iron, in addition to the vitamins and minerals already present. Whole grains may or may not be enriched with vitamins and minerals.
Choosing whole grains
Try to incorporate whole grains into your diet at least half of the time. You can get whole-grain versions of most foods at your local grocery store, including rice, bread, cereal, wheat, and pasta. Many whole-grain goods, such as a range of breads, pastas, and cereals, are available in convenient ready-to-eat packages. Whole grains include, for example, the following:
- Brown rice
- Bulgur (cracked wheat)
- Whole-wheat bread, spaghetti, or crackers
Identifying the type of grains in a product, particularly bread, is not always straightforward. For example, a brown loaf of bread is not necessarily made from whole wheat; the brown color may be due to the addition of colour. Whenever you’re unsure whether or not anything contains whole grains, look at the product label or the Nutrition Facts panel. Look for the term “whole” on the packaging, and make sure that whole grains are listed among the first few ingredients on the ingredient list before purchasing.
What about white whole-wheat bread?
The type of grains contained in a product, particularly bread, is not usually obvious. For example, a brown loaf of bread isn’t necessarily made from whole wheat; the brown color may be due to the use of colour additives. Look at the product label or the Nutrition Facts panel if you’re not sure if anything contains whole grains. Keep an eye out for the term “whole” on the packaging, and check to see if whole grains are included as one of the first ingredients.
A word of caution
If you consume just whole grains, you may need to take extra precautions to ensure that you get enough folic acid, a B vitamin, into your system. The majority of refined grain products are reinforced with folic acid, but whole grain products are not commonly enhanced with folic acid. Try to consume whole grains that have been fortified with folic acid, such as certain cereals that are ready to eat right away. Consume lots of other folate-rich foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and legumes, in addition to these.
How to enjoy more whole grains in your diet
To incorporate more whole grains into your meals and snacks, follow these suggestions:
- Breakfasts that include whole-grain cereals, such as whole-wheat bran flakes (although some bran flakes may only include the bran and not the complete grain), shredded wheat, or oatmeal are a good choice. Instead of ordinary bagels, whole-wheat toast or whole-grain bagels can be substituted. Pastries can be substituted with low-fat muffins cooked with whole-grain cereals, such as oats or other varieties of cereal. Sandwiches made with whole-grain bread or buns are a great option. Switch the regular flour tortillas with whole-wheat varieties. White rice can be substituted with quinoa, brown rice, wild rice, barley, or bulgur
- Wild rice or barley can be used in soups, stews, casseroles, and salads, among other dishes. Extra bulk can be achieved by mixing in whole grains, such as cooked brown rice or whole-grain bread crumbs, with ground beef or chicken. Instead of dry bread crumbs, try using rolled oats or crushed whole-wheat bran cereal in your baking recipes.
Not only will you obtain more health-promoting nutrients by eating a variety of whole grains, but you will also find your meals and snacks more fascinating.
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The 9 Essential Whole Grain Foods You Need in Your Diet
Are you getting enough whole grains in your diet? The USDA’s MyPlate, the most recent dietary plan produced by the agency, suggests six 1-ounce portions of grains each day, so you’re probably not getting enough. The most essential thing to remember is that at least half of these meals must be whole grains. Whole grains are highly regarded as the ideal nutritional bundle, and they taste incredibly fantastic when blended with salads, soups, breads, and other dishes. If you are concerned that eating grains would result in a carbohydrate excess, fear not.
The University of Calgary discovered evidence that people have relied on grain as a staple crop for at least 100,000 years, according to archeological findings.
Yes, whole grains help to keep the planet turning, but how much do you really know about these superfoods?
Struggling to cook healthy? We’ll help you prep.
How much whole grain do you consume on a daily basis? The USDA’s MyPlate, the most recent nutrition guideline issued, suggests six 1-ounce portions of grains each day, which is likely not what you’re doing. However, it is essential that at least half of these meals be composed of whole grains. Whole grains are often regarded as the “perfect nutrition bundle,” and they taste extremely fantastic when added to salads, soups, breads, and other dishes. Concerned that eating grains may result in carbohydrate overload?
Whole grains, as well as fruits, vegetables, and legumes, are classified as “healthy” carbs.
Rice, wheat, and corn are basic crops that provide the bulk of the food for our globe today.
All of your questions will be answered in our thorough guide, which will also demonstrate how simple it is to incorporate more whole grains into your diet.
What are Whole Grains?
Grains are the seeds of plants that are edible. An whole grain is defined as one that has all three essential elements of a seed: bran, germ, and endosperm, among other things. Pseudocereals are whole grains that fall into one of two categories: cereals or pseudocereals. Cereal grains are derived from cereal grasses such as wheat, oats, rice, corn, barley, sorghum, rye, and millet. They are also known as cereal grains. Cooked and consumed in the same manner as cereal grains, pseudocereal grains are distinguished by the fact that they do not derive from grasses; grains in this category include quinoa, buckwheat, and amaranth.
Milling, a commercial technique that extends the shelf life of goods such as flour, removes important components of the seeds’ structure.
This procedure, however, results in the loss of the majority of vital nutrients. Consuming whole grains is the only way to be certain that you are receiving the maximum nutritious value for your money on a consistent basis. Jennifer Causey’s photograph is used with permission.
Health Benefits of Whole Grains
Whole grains are high in soluble fiber, which is beneficial for the heart since it helps to regulate blood pressure and cholesterol levels. For example, researchers at the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition discovered that a diet high in whole grains considerably lowers the risk of heart disease and other diseases. The antioxidants included in whole grains have anti-inflammatory and cancer-fighting properties, making them an excellent source of nutrition. The MyPlaterrecommendation for whole grains is that at least half of all grains taken daily be whole grains, which is a significant portion of your total daily grain intake.
As a resource, MyPlateprovides severalcommon one-ounce equivalents as a choice.
Are Whole Grains Gluten-Free?
Absolutely—there are a variety of wonderful gluten-free grains available, including brown rice, quinoa, maize, and other varieties of grain. Wheat (including wheat berries, spelt, kamut, farro, and bulgur), rye, barley, and triticale are among the grains to avoid. Rye, barley, and triticale are among the grains to avoid. Although oats are nominally gluten-free, there is a larger risk of cross-contamination during the production process. Choose gluten-free oats, such as Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Rolled Oats, to be on the safe side.
Best Whole Grains to Eat
In spite of the fact that all whole grains are superfoods, several of them have distinct qualities and health advantages that are not present in other grains. Here are the nine that stand out the most.
A form of wheat that is most commonly associated with the Middle Eastern staple tabbouleh, bulgur can be prepared in only a few minutes and is a nutritious addition to any meal. It also contains the highest amount of fiber of any grain.
This incredibly versatile grain is commonly accessible, affordable, and gluten-free. It is also a good source of fiber. Brown rice, which is derived from whole grains, is preferable to white rice, which is made from processed grains and should be avoided.
Corn, although commonly referred to be a vegetable, is actually a grain. In spite of the fact that it is used in hazardous goods such as high fructose corn syrup, maize in its purest form contains a high concentration of antioxidants. Try to find it in a variety of colors—yellow is the most common, but white, blue, and even purple are all available—and eat it directly off the cob or toast the kernels to make popcorn.
Oats come in a variety of forms, from old-fashioned to steel-cut, and are guaranteed to remain whole grain, even if they are prepared quickly. While all grains are high in fiber, oatmeal has an unique kind known as beta-glucan, which has been shown to be particularly effective in decreasing cholesterol levels.
This light-brown colored, medium-sized ancient grain is a variety of wheat that looks, feels, and tastes similar to wheat berries in appearance, texture, and flavor.
Farro is particularly favored by cooks in the restaurant industry because of its pleasantly chewy texture and sweet flavor.
Don’t be fooled by its little size; this gluten-free ancient grain is packed with powerful health benefits. Teff, which is a form of millet, contains much higher levels of calcium and iron than most other grains. Because of its compact size, it is suitable for baking into energy bars and breads such as injera, a spongy flatbread that is native to Ethiopia and popular across the world.
Sorghum, which is mostly farmed in the United States for animal feed, has lately gained popularity among gluten-free consumers because of its flexibility. Cooked sorghum has a chewy texture that is akin to Israeli couscous, and popped sorghum has the consistency of a pint-sized bag of popcorn. Sorghum flour is also widely used in gluten-free baking because of its high gluten content.
Quinoa is a protein powerhouse that cooks quickly, is gluten-free, and is available in a variety of hues ranging from white to red. This ancient grain is a complete protein, which means it includes all nine necessary amino acids in the proper proportions. Quinoa is also well-liked for its moderate taste, delicate chewiness, and adaptability, among other things.
Never be fooled by the name—buckwheat is a gluten-free grain that is akin to sorrel and rhubarb in appearance. Its seeds, on the other hand, are carbohydrate-dense and may be used in the same ways as wheat can. Buckwheat flour may be used as a foundation for pancake and waffle mixes, while whole buckwheat can be used in salads and soups.
How to Buy Whole Grains
Whole grains may be found in the bulk foods department of your local grocery store as well as the rice and pasta aisles, among other places. Some supermarkets also include goods under the “health foods” or “international aisle” that are similar to these. Bob’s Red Mill is a widely accessible brand that manufactures nearly every whole grain now available on the market. If you are unable to locate a certain product at a store, you should try getting it from Amazon. To ensure that you’re selecting whole grain items that are 100 percent whole grain, look at the label on the packaging.
When buying grains, look for the word “whole” before the grain name (such as whole wheat), and avoid flours that have been processed or enriched.
Photograph courtesy of Grace Elkus
Whole Grain Recipes and Ideas
A wide variety of savory and sweet uses are available for whole grains, ranging from breakfast to dinner and everything in between. Here are the most effective methods of incorporating them into your diet. Use toasted bread as a crispy snack or as a salad garnish. Amaranth seeds have been popped.
How to add more whole grains to your diet
Increasing the amount of whole grains in your diet is a good idea. While they supply critical vitamins and nutrients, they also help you “raise” your intake of dietary fiber, which has been proven to lower the risk of heart disease, some malignancies and diabetes in certain studies.
It can also aid in the alleviation of various health problems, such as constipation.
What are whole grains exactly?
Whole grains and refined grains are the two types of grains that are classified. Entire grains are derived from whole seeds that include three essential components:
- Bran is the seed’s outer skin
- It is also known as the seed coat. Germ: the embryonic stage of a plant, which has the potential to develop into a new plant. The endosperm is responsible for providing nutrients to the germ.
Whole grains include things like whole wheat flour, oats, and brown rice, to name a few. Refined grains are milled, which is a procedure that removes the bran and germ from the seed, hence reducing the quantity of dietary fiber, protein, and other nutrients present. Refined grains include things like white flour, rice, and pasta, to name a few.
How much should we eat daily?
While adults should try to consume at least three servings of whole grains each day, most only consume approximately one serving, according to Sharon Madalis of Geisinger Health System’s registered dietitian nutritionist. “As a general rule of thumb, strive to incorporate whole grains into every meal.” Are you unsure about where to begin? Here are a few suggestions for increasing your intake of whole grains: Breakfast Oatmeal is a fantastic choice, and the fiber will help you feel fuller for a longer period of time.
- Use fresh fruit, such as bananas or berries, to top it.
- Rye bread, or toast, as long as the components contain whole rye or rye berries, is a wonderful source of whole grains that is largely underappreciated at the moment.
- If you want to make buckwheat pancakes as a healthy alternative, Madalis suggests that you don’t go overboard with the toppings such as butter, whipped cream, or syrup.
- But keep in mind that not all whole wheat bread is whole grain, and not all whole grain bread is whole wheat, and vice versa.
- According to the recipe, “whole wheat flour” or “100 percent whole wheat flour” should be the first component.
- If the product is labeled as “multigrain” or “seven-grain” on the box or bag, this does not always imply that the item is whole grain.
- Delicious and simple to make, barley soup is another option.
- Have a bowl of quinoa.
- Snacks In between meals, air-popped popcorn is a low-calorie snack that is made from high-quality whole grains.
- “Just be sure to avoid packed microwaveable popcorn, since it has a high amount of calories, salt, and other additives,” advises Madalis.
As a bonus, they can assist you in increasing your daily intake of nutrients found in whole grains. These nutrients include B vitamins, antioxidants and trace minerals such as zinc, magnesium and copper.
Reaping the benefits
Replace processed grains with whole grains, there’s no doubt about it. Whole grains have several health advantages. Although they contain a high concentration of nutrients and fiber (which helps to promote healthy digestion), they can also help to lower your risk of developing heart disease, a stroke, Type 2 diabetes, and certain cancers by reducing inflammation in the body, which is a contributing factor to many chronic (long-term) diseases. Small adjustments may have a significant impact, so why not get started right away?
Are you looking for a nutritious breakfast recipe? Try these overnight oats with maple and apples. Looking for a nutritious lunch option? Try this quinoa meal with Greek flavors.
Whole grains should be preferred over processed grains. While refined grains, which are stripped of vital nutrients during the refining process, provide a more “complete package” of health advantages, whole grains provide a more “complete package.” The bran, germ, and endosperm are the three components that make up a complete grain kernel. Each part contains nutrients that are beneficial to one’s health. The bran is the outer layer of the grain that is high in fiber and contains B vitamins, iron, copper, zinc, magnesium, antioxidants, and phytochemicals.
Growing takes place in the germ, which is rich in healthful fats, vitamin E, B vitamins, phytochemicals, and antioxidants.
The endosperm is the internal layer of the grain that contains carbohydrates, protein, and trace amounts of certain B vitamins and minerals.
- Bran and fiber help to keep blood sugar levels stable rather than creating sudden spikes by delaying the breakdown of starch into glucose. Fiber is beneficial in lowering cholesterol levels as well as moving waste through the digestive system. Fiber may also aid in the prevention of the formation of tiny blood clots, which can lead to heart attacks or strokes in some people. Whole grains include phytochemicals and important minerals such as magnesium, selenium, and copper, which may provide protection against some malignancies.
The introduction of mechanized roller mills in the late nineteenth century fundamentally altered the way grains are processed today. Milling removes the bran and germ from the grain, leaving behind just the soft, easily digestible endosperm. The grain is simpler to chew when it is not coated in fibrous bran. A portion of the germ is removed because to the high fat content of the germ, which might shorten the shelf life of processed wheat products. The nutritional content of the highly processed grains that come from this procedure is significantly reduced.
Although certain nutrients can be restored by fortification, other health-promoting components of whole grains, such as phytochemicals, are not able to be substituted.
Check out our Carbohydrate Guide if you want to learn more about carbs.
In light of growing evidence demonstrating the numerous health benefits derived from whole grains, as well as the possibility of negative consequences from consuming predominantly refined grains, it is recommended that whole grains be consumed in greater proportion than refined grains whenever possible.
To detect if a food product contains a high concentration of 100 percent whole grains, look for them first or second in the list of ingredients, respectively. Alternatively, pick whole grains that have not been processed:
Grains processing was transformed when mechanized roller mills were developed in the late nineteenth century. Grinding removes the bran and germ from the grain, leaving just the soft, easily digestible endosperm behind. The grain is simpler to chew when it is not coated in fibrous bran. As a result of its fat content, which can reduce the shelf life of wheat products, the germ is removed from the grain. In turn, the nutritious content of the highly processed grains is significantly reduced. Despite the fact that refining wheat produces light, airy breads and pastries, the process removes more than half of the B vitamins found in wheat, as well as 90% of the vitamin E and almost all of the fiber.
More and more studies indicates that eating whole grains and other less-processed, higher-quality sources of carbs, while reducing intake of refined grains, is beneficial to one’s health in a number of ways.
Getting at least half or three ounces of the grain consumption from 100 percent whole grains is recommended by the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (based on a 2,000-calorie diet) according to the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
A simple method to detect if a food product has a high percentage of 100 percent whole grains is to look for them first or second in the ingredient list.
- The USDA criteria for identifying whole grains in a food product were evaluated in this study. They are as follows: Any whole grain as the first ingredient, 2) any whole grain as the first ingredient with added sugars not appearing in the first three ingredients of the ingredient list, 3) the word “whole” before any grain ingredient, 4) a carbohydrate to fiber ratio of less than 10:1, and 5) the Whole Grain Stamp, which is sponsored by the industry.
- The Whole Grain Stamp is a food-product marking tool that is frequently used. However, while the stamp was intended to direct customers toward healthier whole grains, it also recognized goods that included more fiber and contained less salt and trans fat but were higher in sugar and calories than whole grain meals that did not have the stamp. When it came to selecting healthier whole grain products, the other three USDA criteria had mixed findings. However, the carbohydrate to fiber ratio of less than 10:1 (criterion 4) showed to be the most effective indicator of healthfulness (see table). Whether this ratio is more predictive of chronic disease risk than other measures of carbohydrate quality—such as the amount and type of fiber consumed, or the overall dietaryglycemic index and load—remains to be determined in further research. Foods that satisfied this criterion had higher fiber content and were less likely to include trans fats, salt, and sugar than foods that did not.
- It is suggested in this study that labeling requirements for whole-grain items be modified because calculating the carbohydrate-to-fiber ratio may be complicated and not easily available to consumers when reading a label.
Whole grain meals that are high in fiber and have only a few other components in addition to whole grain should be preferred by consumers. Whole grains in their natural forms, such as brown rice, barley, oats, maize, and rye, are also nutritious alternatives since they have all of the nutritional advantages that whole grains have to offer without the addition of any other additives.
Whole Grains and Disease
Because more experts are beginning to look more thoroughly at carbs and health, they are discovering that quality carbohydrates are as essential as quantity when it comes to maintaining good health. The majority of research, including those conducted by many distinct Harvard teams, demonstrate a link between whole grains and improved health.
- Whole grain eating, according to a data from the Iowa Women’s Health Study, was associated with fewer deaths from inflammatory and infectious causes, excluding cardiac and cancer-related reasons. Rheumatoid arthritis, gout, asthma, ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, and neurodegenerative disorders are examples of such conditions. Over a 17-year period, women who consumed at least two or more servings of whole-grain meals per day were 30 percent less likely to have died from an inflammation-related disease when compared to those who consumed fewer or no whole-grain foods at all. People who consumed 70 grams of whole grains per day, as opposed to those who consumed little or no whole grains, had a 22 percent lower risk of total mortality, a 23 percent lower risk of cardiovascular disease mortality, and a 20 percent lower risk of cancer mortality, according to a meta-analysis combining results from studies conducted in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Scandinavian countries (which included health information from over 786,000 individuals).
Cardiovascular Disease is a medical condition that affects the heart and blood vessels. Eating whole grains instead of refined grains has been shown to significantly decrease total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein (LDL, or bad cholesterol), triglycerides, and insulin levels in those with cardiovascular disease.
- After 10 years of follow-up, the Nurses’ Health Study found that women who ate 2 to 3 servings of whole-grain products each day were 30 percent less likely to have a heart attack or die from heart disease than women who ate no more than 1 serving each week. A meta-analysis of seven major studies found that people who ate 2.5 or more servings of whole-grain foods per day were 21 percent less likely to develop cardiovascular disease (heart attack, stroke, or the need for a procedure to bypass or open a clogged artery) than those who ate less than 2 servings per week.
Kind 2 Diabetes is a type of diabetes that affects the pancreas. The substitution of refined grains with whole grains, as well as the consumption of at least 2 servings of whole grains daily, may help to minimize the incidence of type 2 diabetes. Whole grains include fiber, minerals, and phytochemicals that may help to enhance insulin sensitivity and glucose metabolism, as well as decrease the absorption of meals, so avoiding blood sugar rises in certain people.
The glycemic index and glycemic load of refined grains, on the other hand, are high, and they contain little fiber and minerals.
- Following the health and dietary habits of more than 160,000 women for up to 18 years, researchers discovered that those who consumed an average of 2 to 3 servings of whole grains daily were 30 percent less likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those who consumed only a few servings of whole grains daily. When the researchers merged their findings with the findings of many other big studies, they discovered that consuming an additional 2 servings of whole grains per day reduced the incidence of type 2 diabetes by 21 percent. In a follow-up to that study, which included men and women from the Nurses’ Health Studies I and II and the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study, it was discovered that switching to whole grains instead of white rice may help lessen the risk of developing diabetes. A 17 percent greater risk of diabetes was found in individuals who consumed the most white rice (five or more servings per week) compared to those who consumed white rice less than once a month. Brown rice was shown to have an 11 percent decreased risk of diabetes in those who consumed the most of it (two or more servings per week) compared to those who consumed the least amount of it. Researchers predict that substituting whole grains for even a little amount of white rice can reduce the chance of developing diabetes by 36 percent. In a major study of more than 72,000 postmenopausal women who did not have type 2 diabetes when they began the trial, researchers discovered that the higher the intake of whole grains, the greater the risk reduction for developing type 2 diabetes was. Those who consumed the largest amount of whole grains (2 or more servings daily) had a 43 percent lower risk of developing breast cancer as compared to women who did not consume any whole grains.
Cancer The evidence on whole grains and cancer is conflicting, with some research indicating a preventive benefit and others indicating no such effect.
- Cancer The evidence on whole grains and cancer is conflicting, with some research indicating a preventive benefit and others indicating no impact.
Cancer The evidence on cancer is contradictory, with some research finding a preventive benefit of whole grains while others found none.
- Using data from 170,776 women who were followed for more than 26 years, researchers investigated the effects of different dietary fibers, including fiber derived from whole grains, on Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. Despite the fact that people who consume large amounts of fruit fiber had a lower chance of developing Crohn’s disease, there was no evidence that consuming whole grains lowers the risk of developing either illness.
Gluten is a naturally occurring protein that may be found in some cereals. While gluten can produce negative effects in some people, such as those who have celiac disease, the vast majority of people can and have consumed gluten for the majority of their lives without experiencing any bad consequences. However, unfavorable media coverage of wheat and gluten has led some individuals to question the role of wheat and gluten in a healthy diet, despite the fact that there is little published data to back such statements.
- Departments of Health and Human Services and the Department of Agriculture of the United States Dietary Guidelines for Americans from 2015 through 2020. This is the eighth edition. The month of December, 2015. You may find it at
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- Sun Q, Spiegelman D, van Dam RM, et al. White rice, brown rice, and the risk of developing type 2 diabetes in men and women in the United States. Parker ED, Liu S, Van Horn L, et al., Arch Intern Med. 2010
- Parker ED, Liu S, Van Horn L, et al. The Women’s Health Initiative Observational Study examined the relationship between whole grain intake and incident type 2 diabetes. Journal of the American Medical Association, Ann Epidemiology, 23:321-7
- Aune D, Keum N, Giovannucci E, et al. An investigation of the relationship between whole grain consumption and the risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer, overall mortality, and cause-specific death: a systematic review and a dose response meta-analysis of prospective studies. Jacobs DR, Jr., Marquart L, Slavin J, Kushi LH. BMJ. 2016
- Jacobs DR, Jr., Marquart L, Slavin J, Kushi LH. An enlarged review and meta-analysis of the relationship between whole-grain consumption and cancer. A. Schatzkin, T. Mouw, Y. Park, and colleagues (Nutr Cancer, 1998
- 30:85-96). The NIH-AARP Diet and Health Study examined the relationship between dietary fiber and whole-grain intake and colorectal cancer. Am J Clin Nutr 2007
- Strayer L, Jacobs DR, Jr., Schairer C, Schatzkin A, Flood A. Am J Clin Nutr 2007
- Strayer L, Jacobs DR, Jr., Schairer C, Schatzkin A, Flood A. Food intake of carbohydrates, glycemic index, and glycemic load and the incidence of colorectal cancer in the BCDDP cohort was investigated. In Cancer Causes and Control (2007
- 18:853-63), Aune D, Chan DS, Lau R, and colleagues report that Comprehensive review and dose-response meta-analysis of prospective studies on the association between fiber, whole grains, and the risk of colorectal cancer. Strate LL, Keeley BR, Cao Y, Wu K, Giovannucci EL, Chan AT. BMJ. 2011
- Strate LL, Keeley BR, Cao Y, Wu K, Giovannucci EL, Chan AT. In a prospective cohort study, a Western dietary pattern was found to increase the risk of incident diverticulitis, but a prudent dietary pattern decreased the risk. Ananthakrishnan AN, Khalili H, Konijeti GG, et al. Gastroenterology 2017
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- Ananthakrishnan AN, Khalili H, et al. A prospective study of long-term dietary fiber consumption and the risk of developing Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis was conducted. Journal of Gastroenterology, Volume 145, Number 7, September 2013, pages 970-971.
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100% Whole Wheat Bread Is Very Different From Multigrain
In part, this is due to the fact that so many individuals consume the incorrect carbs: refined carbohydrates found in white bread, candies, cookies, sugary cereals and a wide variety of other snacks and beverages. According to a 2019 research published in theLancet, a low consumption of whole grains is really the most significant dietary risk factor for mortality and illness in the United States. Incorporating these nutritious grains into your diet will help you avoid health problems such as heart disease, diabetes, colon cancer, and even asthma and Alzheimer’s disease.
“Whole grains are an essential component of any healthful diet,” explains the author “According to Stefani Sassos, MS, RDN, the registered dietitian at the Good Housekeeping Institute.
By substituting certain refined carbs in your diet for 100 percent whole-grain alternatives, you may start small and keep things easy.” These 15 grains are deserving of a spot at the top of your grocery shopping list.
Pam Walker is a woman who lives in the United States. Photographs courtesy of Getty Images This one is rather simple, as long as you don’t fall prey to food marketers’ deception. The ingredient may be found readily in baked goods such as bread and pasta; however, check sure the label states “100 percent whole wheat.” Terms like “multigrain” and “wheat” aren’t enough to describe what is being offered.
When purchasing any whole-grain product, carefully examine the ingredient list to ensure that the whole grain appears at or near the top of the list of components. At the very least, each dish should contain 2 or 3 grams of fiber.
Wmaster890Getty Images & Stock Photos Oats are notably high in avenanthramide, an antioxidant that has been shown to protect the cardiovascular system. When you’re looking for this whole grain, it doesn’t matter whether or not you see the word “whole” on the package, unlike when shopping for wheat items. The presence of oats in the ingredient list indicates that the product is prepared from whole oats. If you’re shopping for flavored oatmeal, stay away from those that include high-fructose corn syrup.
Vm2002Getty Images & Stock Photos It is estimated that around 75% of the nutrients in white rice are lost to milling-room waste, including virtually all of the antioxidants and minerals magnesium, phosphorus, and B vitamins, which are found in the nutritious bran and germ. When at all feasible, choose brown rice, which includes fragrant kinds such as basmati and jasmine that are brown in color. Exotic rice varieties such as red and black rice, both of which are considered whole grains and are strong in antioxidants, will take your meal to the next level.
Sasapanchenko Photographs courtesy of Getty Images Nutritional study from the nonprofitThe Organic Center has found that the whole grain rye has more nutrients per 100-calorie serving than any other whole grain. It has four times the amount of fiber found in normal whole wheat and delivers approximately half of the daily required amount of iron. One issue is that the majority of rye and pumpernickel bread available in grocery shops is manufactured with refined flour. Stick with it and search for the term “whole rye” towards the top of the ingredients list to get the health advantages.
BWFolsom Photographs courtesy of Getty Images This Arabic grain is a low-carb version of ancient wheat that has up to four times the amount of fiber found in brown rice, according to the USDA. During the early stages of their growth, freekeh kernels are collected and roasted. They contain far higher levels of vitamins and minerals, such as the immune-boosting mineral selenium, than other grains. Once in your stomach, freekeh serves as a prebiotic, promoting the growth of beneficial bacteria that help digestion and absorption of nutrients.
Photograph by Portishead1Getty Images According to the USDA, those who consumed half a cup of whole barley on a regular basis for five weeks had lower cholesterol levels than those who did not consume any barley over the same period.
Make a side dish out of quick-cooking barley by tossing in some raisins or dried apricots before serving. Only whole-grain barley should be used, not “pearled,” which implies the bran and germ have been removed.
Beornbjorn Photographs courtesy of Getty Images Many persons with celiac disease may manage this whole grain, as well as quinoa, amaranth, and sorghum, which are all gluten-free grains. This is also one of the greatest grain-based sources of magnesium, a wonder mineral that does everything from relieve PMS symptoms to improve nerve functioning, as well as manganese, which helps to increase mental capacity. And thank goodness for that—a it’s fantastic reason to indulge in a deliciousbuckwheat pancake!
Gaus-nataliya Photographs courtesy of Getty Images Bulgur is considered a whole grain for all practical purposes, despite the fact that up to 5 percent of its bran may be removed during the milling process. However, because it is so beneficial to your health, we have included it on the list. Iron and magnesium are abundant in the grain, which is used to produce the salad tabbouleh (also known as tabbouleh). Use the fiber and protein powerhouse (a cup includes roughly 75 percent of the dietary fiber you need for the day, and 25 percent of the protein you should consume) in salads or soups to add flavor and nutrients to your diet.
Tycoon751Photos courtesy of Getty Images Despite the fact that it is technically a seed rather than a grain, this ancient South American superfood has more protein than any other grain and contains 522 mg of omega-3 fatty acids in each uncooked cup (approximately three servings). Your family will most likely like the mild, nutty flavor of this dish as a change of pace at the meal table. This dish is also easy to cook ahead of time and carry for work or school as a lunchbox option.
Arianarama Photographs courtesy of Getty Images The majority of couscous you’ll see in supermarkets is a type of pasta manufactured from refined wheat flour, not couscous. So when you’re browsing the couscous aisle for the healthiest option, aim for the whole-wheat variety, which is most readily available at natural food stores. Choosing whole grain over refined flour will provide you with an additional 5 grams of fiber per serving compared to refined flour.
BRETT STEVENSPhoto courtesy of Getty Images When eaten in its complete form, corn may be incredibly beneficial to your health. Whole corn is an excellent source of B vitamins, magnesium, and phosphorus, and it is also known to promote healthy gut flora, which may help to prevent diabetes, heart disease, and chronic inflammation in the body. Yellow corn contains a high concentration of antioxidants as well. What’s the quickest and most convenient method to consume it? Popcorn. You can either purchase the kernels and microwave them in a paper bag, or you can make them the old-fashioned manner on the stovetop.
Images courtesy of Westend61Getty Images When it comes to protein content, this grain is a standout: According to the Whole Grains Council, it contains all nine necessary amino acids, hence constituting a complete protein source.
It is high in magnesium and phosphorus, and it may possibly have anti-inflammatory properties. It is also safe to consume for individuals who have celiac disease. Amaranth may be used in a variety of dishes, including soups, porridges, and even popcorn!
Photograph by Marekuliasz/Getty Images In countries other than the United States, this grain is far more popular than it is in the United States, but it is gaining appeal here as well, in part because it is gluten-free. Aside from being strong in antioxidants and phytochemicals (which may help lower cholesterol), sorghum is also high in manganese, a mineral that is essential for maintaining a healthy metabolism. Sorghum, like amaranth, may be popped like popcorn, and it makes an excellent basis for a grain bowl as well.
images courtesy of bhofack2Getty Images Farro is an ancient wheat grain with a nutty flavor that is high in fiber and a good source of iron and magnesium. It is also a good source of protein. A quarter-cup of the grain has 6 grams of protein; however, while it is low in gluten, it is not totally gluten-free, making it an unsuitable choice for persons with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity. Prepared farro can be added to salads or used as a basis for seafood or meat dishes, depending on your preference.
Goddard Photography Photographs courtesy of Getty Images Teff, which is technically a seed but is considered to be a member of the grain family, is high in calcium and resistant starch, a form of fiber that is excellent for helping to maintain stable blood sugar levels. It’s also gluten-free, and you can get it in a variety of gluten-free foods. Make breads, muffins, or cakes with teff flour to enjoy the sweet and nutty flavor of the grain. Leah Zerbe is a model and actress. Currently, Leah Zerbe works as an online editor for Rodale News, where she covers topics such as the food system and environmental health.
You may be able to discover further information on this and other related items at the website piano.io.
How to Add Whole Grains to Your Diet
If you have diabetes, this does not imply that you must give up every slice of bread or dish of spaghetti. You may still eat items that are made with grains as long as you use whole grains in the preparation. Whole grains are high in fiber, which can help lower your cholesterol levels and lessen your chance of developing heart disease. It is possible that fiber will reduce digestion and glucose absorption, and that it will not elevate your blood sugar levels as rapidly as refined grains. Furthermore, because whole grains make you feel fuller for a longer period of time, they can aid with weight management.
Psyllium and methylcellulose are two examples of such substances.
It’s also crucial to boost the amount of liquids you consume on a consistent basis.
4 Ways to Eat More Whole Grains
The simplest method to increase your intake of whole grains is to make a few dietary changes, such as substituting whole wheat bread and brown rice for white bread and white rice, respectively. Also, consider the following suggestions:
- In order to add texture, use grains such as barley and bulgur wheat to make soups, stews, salads, and casseroles When baking breads or muffins, use half whole wheat flour and half oat, amaranth, or buckwheat flour in place of white flour to make them more nutritious. You may also use these whole-grain flours to make pancakes and waffles
- As a snack, popcorn, which is a whole grain, can be substituted for crackers. Simply omit the butter and salt from the recipe. Another healthy snack choice is unsweetened whole-grain cereal
- However, this is not recommended. Instead of serving rice as a side dish, try quinoa. Instead of flour or breadcrumbs, you may cover shrimp and chicken with quinoa to make a tasty coating for them.
Read Labels Carefully
It might be difficult to locate whole-grain goods in your local grocery. Some meals that appear to include whole grains, however, do not in fact do so. It is necessary to read food labels very carefully. Don’t be tricked by the following:
- “Enriched” is one of the terms. Enriched wheat comprises only a portion of the grain
- Foods branded “containing whole grain,” “made from whole grain,” or “multigrain” contain a significant portion of the grain as well. It is possible that they are not 100 percent whole grains. Look for the term “whole grain” as the first item on the ingredient list. The color of the food. For example, bread may be dark solely as a result of the addition of additional substances such as molasses.
How Much Is Too Much?
Even while whole grains are beneficial to your health, you shouldn’t consume them in large quantities. The amount of these grains you can consume is determined on how effectively you are controlling your blood sugar. A decent rule of thumb is to consume around three servings of whole grains every day. Following are some examples of a single whole-grain meal serving:
- 1/2 cup cooked brown rice
- 1/2 cup cooked oats
- 1 slice whole-grain bread
- 1/2 cup whole-wheat pasta
- 1/2 cup cooked quinoa
Inquire with your doctor or a nutritionist about the best way to incorporate whole grains into your diet. Together, you can come up with a strategy that suits your preferences while also assisting you in gaining greater control over your blood sugar.
Why Whole Grains?
The way whole wheat bread and brown rice are processed is what makes them more nutritious than white bread and white rice, which is why whole wheat bread and brown rice are better for you. Grains are composed of three components:
- Branis is the outer layer of the organism. In addition to fiber, antioxidants, B vitamins, and minerals, it has The endosperm is the starchy layer in the centre of the egg. It is mostly composed of carbs, with just trace quantities of protein, B vitamins, and minerals added in. Germis is the interior portion of the fruit, which is high in vitamins and minerals, as well as beneficial fats
Whole-grain meals are prepared from the whole grain, which means they include more vitamins, minerals, and fiber than refined grains. Because refined grains include primarily the starchy endosperm layer, they have less fiber and minerals than whole grains. Whole grains include, for example, the following:
- Amaranth, brown rice, bulgur, buckwheat, millet, oatmeal, popcorn, sorghum, quinoa, whole farro, whole oats, whole rye, and whole wheat are all good options.
3 Whole Grains You Need to Be Eating Now
Even if you don’t currently consume whole grains, you’ve undoubtedly heard of them or at least read about them. However, despite all of the hype about whole grains, there is still a lot of misunderstanding about what they are and why they are such an important element of a well-balanced diet in the first place. (Photo courtesy of Getty Images) Whole grains should account for at least half of the grains consumed by adults, according to the USDA Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA). Despite this, the majority of individuals do not consume enough of this essential complete meal.
The OldwaysHealth Studies Databaseis a fantastic resource for understanding more about the relationship between whole grain consumption and a lower risk of disease and illness.
Each whole grain has a somewhat distinct nutritional composition, and you get the maximum benefit if you consume a variety of whole grains throughout the day.
What Is a Whole Grain?
A whole grain is a kernel that is edible and consists of three parts: 1) The bran is the outermost layer of the kernel, and it is composed of cellulose. It is rich in antioxidants, B vitamins, and dietary fiber. 2)The endosperm is the central layer of the kernel and is the greatest portion of the kernel. It is composed mostly of starchycarbohydrates, proteins, and trace quantities of vitamins and minerals, among other things. 3)The germ is the innermost layer of the organism. The germ is the portion of a plant that has the capacity to sprout and develop into a new plant from its seed.
The most important characteristic of a whole grain is that it has all three components.
Whole grains come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and flavors.
You may consume them on their own – such as in a bowl of oatmeal – or use them as an ingredient in other dishes or baked goods.
Whole grain meals, together with fruits and vegetables, are the base of theOldways Diet Pyramids, which provide as helpful visual aids for eating nutritionally balanced diets such as the Mediterranean Diet, among other things.
Best Way to Find Whole Grains
If you’re eating a side of brown rice or a bowl of steel cut oats, you can be sure you’re getting your whole grains in. Whole grains, on the other hand, are becoming increasingly popular in processed meals such as pasta, bread, granola bars, and chips. The availability of whole grains in the aisles of your local grocery store is constantly increasing in number. Image courtesy of the Oldways Whole Grain Council. TheWhole Grain Stampis the quickest and most accurate method of determining if a food product includes whole grains.
The Whole Grain Stamp is available in three different variations:
- The 100 percent mark, which indicates that all of the grain constituents are whole grains
- Using the 50 percent Plus stamp indicates that at least half of the grain components are whole grain. Contains at least 8 grams or half a serving of whole grain, but may include more refined grain than whole grain.
In addition, the stamp informs you how many grams of whole grain components are contained in a single serving of the food. Instead of looking for the stamp, seek for phrases such as “100 percent whole wheat,” “whole,” “stone-ground whole,” “brown rice,” “oats,” and “wheat berries” on packaging and in ingredient lists to indicate that the product is whole grain. If you notice the words “whole grain” without any additional information or mention of the specific type of whole grain, it is possible that the product contains just trace amounts of whole grains.
These are NOT the phrases “whole grain” or “whole wheat.”
- Flour with added nutrients
- Wheat flour
- Degerminated (on corn meal)
- Wheat germ
- Spelt flour
Including Whole Grains in Your Meals
In order to meet USDA recommendations, adults should consume at least three to five servings of whole grains per day, and children should consume at least two to three servings per day. To obtain a basic sense of what you can eat to acquire one serving of whole grains, consider the following: a half cup of cooked oatmeal, whole grain pasta, or brown rice; a cup of whole grain cold cereal (dry); or a slice of whole grain bread, to name a few possibilities. Adding brown rice, quinoa, oats, and whole wheat flour to your dishes is a terrific way to get more fiber into your diet.
Amaranth Its mild pepper taste and nuttiness make it an excellent addition to a wide range of foods, including soups and salads.
It contains antioxidants, fiber, and minerals such as magnesium, phosphorous (for phosphorus), iron (for iron), and manganese (for manganese).
SorghumSorghum, commonly known as milo, is a grain that can grow in a variety of settings, including tropical and desert climates, and is farmed all over the world.
It’s also a good source of fiber.
When compared to many other grains, sorghum has high antioxidant levels and also includes a variety of beneficial phytochemicals that are excellent for you.
Pearled sorghum is not considered to be a full grain.
Teff is a cereal grain that is widely seen in Ethiopian and Eritrean cuisine.
It may be used to make cereal, baked dishes, and even “teff polenta,” which is a kind of polenta prepared with teff.
Teff has more than double the amount of iron found in other grains, as well as three times the amount of calcium.
Teff kernels are just one-fifth the size of wheat kernels, making them difficult to refine into flour. That implies that whenever you see teff mentioned as an ingredient in a recipe, it is nearly always whole grain teff that has been included.
Cooking Instructions for Whole Grains
Cooking grains is a simple process that is comparable to that of cooking rice. Follow these straightforward steps: 1. Place the dry grain in a saucepan with water or broth and bring to a boil. 2. Bring a pot of water to a rolling boil. 3. Continue to cook until the liquid is completely absorbed. With this approach, grains are transformed into a delicious substrate that absorbs the tastes of the meals that are served alongside them.