Which Type of Bread is Healthiest ...
and Which is SUPRISINGLY Least Healthy?
© 2014 Health Realizations, Inc.
We know what you're thinking.
Everyone knows that whole wheat breads are the best and white bread is the worst. Where's the news there?
Well, prepare to be surprised.
There's good news for those who despise wheat bread ... sourdough may be better.
A new study set to be published in the British Journal of Nutrition has actually blown the theory that we should all be making our sandwiches and toast out of whole wheat to pieces.
Professor Terry Graham, a carb scientist at the University of Guelph, examined how people respond to different types of bread after eating them for breakfast and lunch. The breads included were:
Whole wheat with barley
Sourdough white bread
All of the participants in the study were overweight men between 50 and 60 years old. Which bread was most beneficial?
After eating sourdough bread the men had the most positive body responses, including lower blood sugar levels. The worst bread turned out to be not white, but whole wheat. Whole-wheat bread caused spikes in blood sugar levels that continued until well after lunch. Even the whole wheat plus barley bread was worse than the white.
Have You Seen the
Whole Grains Stamp?
The Whole Grains Council introduced the Whole Grains Stamp in 2005 to help consumers easily identify food products that contain whole grains.
Now used by 87 companies on almost 850 different food products, the stamp can only be used on products with at least half a serving of whole grains. The U.S. Dietary Guidelines recommend that adults eat at least three servings of whole grain each day, which can be met by eating three whole grain food products labeled with a "100% Whole Grain" stamp -- or six products bearing ANY Whole Grain Stamp.
Why Might Sourdough be Healthier Than Whole Wheat?
Sourdough bread undergoes a fermentation process that may alter its starches, making them healthier. Whole wheat bread, meanwhile, undergoes a similar refining process as white bread. Its healthy components like wheat germ and bran are removed and only partially put back in, making whole-wheat bread far less healthy than most people assume it to be.
In fact, many whole-wheat breads are still made with mostly white flour.
How to Identify Healthy Breads
Keep in mind that this study did not evaluate any breads made with whole grains, the all-star when it comes to healthy breads. Whole wheat and whole grain are two entirely different things.
Research is revealing that whole grains are the best choice when choosing your bread. To distinguish true whole-grain breads from imposters:
Read the label. Whole-grain breads will say "100% whole grain." You can also look for the 100% Whole Grain stamp.
Pick them up. Bread made from whole grains will feel heavy and dense compared to refined-grain breads, which tend to be light, soft and fluffy.
Consider grains other than wheat. Spelt, amaranth, rye and others are also used to make whole-grain breads that often have superior health benefits to wheat. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, for instance, found that wheat bread triggers a greater insulin response than rye bread.
With all of the carb-hating going on in recent years, this news will come as a welcome surprise to many Americans; this is one time when you really can have your "bread" and eat it too!
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