Warning: Big business food manufacturers are trying to pull a fast one
on consumers. Sometimes, after refining away all the vitamins, fiber, and
minerals from wheat, they’ll add molasses to the bread, turning it brown,
and put it on the grocery shelf with a label that says wheat bread. It’s a
trick! Truly nutritious breads and other products will say whole-wheat or
whole-grain. Don’t be fooled.
Read on for the biology behind real wheat bread…
Grains like wheat, corn, oats, barley, and rye are seeds that come from
grasses, and they’re broken into three parts—the germ, the bran, and
the endosperm. Think of a kernel of corn.
The biggest part of the kernel—the part that blows up when you make
popcorn—is the endosperm. Nutritionally it’s pretty much a big dud. It
contains starch, a little protein, and some B vitamins. The germ is the
smallest part of the grain; in the corn kernel, it’s that little white seedlike
thing. But while it’s small, it packs the most nutritional power. It contains
protein, oils, and the B vitamins thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, and pyridoxine.
It also has vitamin E and the minerals magnesium, zinc, potassium, and
iron. The bran is the third part of the grain and the part where all the
fiber is stored. It’s a coating around the endosperm that contains B
vitamins, zinc, calcium, potassium, magnesium, and other minerals.
So what’s the point of this little biology lesson? Well, get this:
When food manufacturers process and refine grains, guess which two
parts get tossed out? Yup, the bran, where all the fiber and minerals are,
and the germ, where all the protein and vitamins are. And what they
keep—the nutritionally bankrupt endosperm (that is, starch)—gets made
into pasta, bagels, white bread, white rice, and just about every other
wheat product and baked good you’ll find. Crazy, right? But if you eat
products made with all the parts of the grain—whole-grain bread, pasta,
long-grain rice—you get all the nutrition that food manufacturers are
otherwise trying to cheat you out of.
Now you know, so start inspecting those labels!
Committed to your Success,
Stephen Cabral, CSCS, CPT, NS
Author of Fatlossity – Lose5in7 Weight Loss System
Health Consultant for MTV, Nutritiondata, Diet.com, Gather, EDGE
Stephen Cabral is a national health correspondent with over 10 years of credentials. He
holds national and international certifications in strength & conditioning, personal training,
yoga and nutrition. For more information on his Free Trim, Tone & Tighten Newsletter
seen by over 100,000 readers each week sign up at www.StephenCabral.com
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