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The Right Bread Makes Healthy Meals Even Healthier

Posted Sep 03 2010 3:02am


What is a whole grain carb?  What’s a good carb?  A bad carb?  When am I supposed to be eating some of these carbs in my healthy meals?

A whole grain carb would be carbohydrates that are considered a good source of fiber.  You’ve heard about staying away from white breads, white rice, and things like that.  To a point, there’s validity to why people say that.  I don’t know that they always know why they are saying it, but the reason that you should try to limit those is because those are usually made with processed carbohydrates and very little fiber content. 

Processed carbohydrates and a lack of fiber are two components that are going to dramatically increase your insulin level, and obviously we want to keep our insulin low and our insulin response low when eating right, so fiber is going to help do that job.

Whole grain carbs are really anything that says "100% whole grain."  "Whole wheat" needs to be examined carefully because some breads will be labeled "wheat bread" and you think it is for healthy diets.  In actuality, wheat bread is just white bread that hasn’t been bleached.  So you need to look for the whole grain or the whole wheat wording in it to find out, and look at the fiber source for good nutrition.  Most of them should have at least 2 grams of fiber per serving, if not 3 to be considered a good fiber source. 

So, that will help you with your healthy meals. 

When you read a food label for whole wheat bread, you’ve probably seen enriched flour as ingredient.  100% whole wheat is the one main ingredient in whole wheat bread that we’re looking for. 

How do we truly know that it’s whole grain and acceptable for our healthy diets?

You want to look within the first 5 ingredients for something that says "whole grain" or "whole oat."  Avoid the enriched ones because that’s the processed portion.  Then you also want to look at the fiber content, because that’s also going to help.  If it’s whole grain it will have fiber in it and it will be a decent source of fiber.  If it has one gram or less of fiber in it it’s not going to be 100% whole grain and shouldn’t be a large part of your healthy meals. 

To be whole grain usually means that they keep the skin or the husk of the kernels and different oats attached and that’s what gives it that fiber.  To make the white breads, they shuck all those outer skins off and just use the insides and that’s where you get just your white breads and your plain wheat breads that haven’t been bleached.

Follow these tips when choosing breads for your healthy meals and you will be well on your way to eating right.





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