It is recommended to eat 50 to 75 g of whole grains daily (bread, brown rice, quinoa, popcorn, wholegrain breakfast cereals, etc.)
Refined grains, on the other hand, are grains stripped from all their natural goodness, practically devoid of natural fibre, containing chemicals (bleach, artificial colourings, artificial flavouring, synthesised vitamins…) and solvents residues. Over 20 vitamins and minerals are removed when whole wheat is converted into white flour, yet only four or five, in synthetic form, are replaced by enrichment. Refined foods were introduced in the 1920s when industrialisation made the refining process both fast and inexpensive. Since then, global health has degenerated tremendously, with a growing number of Heart related disease, Diabetes, obesity… And today, it has become a global pandemic that cost millions to National Health Services, but mostly lives.
Understanding the Grain structure:
A grain is made of three different parts:
1) A protective outer shell – that contains most of the fibres and is a good source of B Vitamin: the bran,
2) The endosperm, made of mainly starch (carbohydrate), provides energy for the seed and
3) The germ – rich in Vitamin E (Oils), antioxidants and Complex B Vitamins - also called the embryo or sprouting section of the seed, provides the growing kernel with essential nutrients.
When grain is refined, both the bran and the germ layers are stripped away leaving only the starchy-carbohydrate-rich endosperm.
Undeniably, stripping the grain from its essential goodness, including vitamins (vitamins A, E, B1, B5, B6, B12, C, folic acid), trace minerals (iron, zinc, magnesium, selenium, cobalt, manganese, copper) and fibre.
Whole Grains and Fibre
Whole grains can be an excellent source of fibre; however, grains are not born equal: whole wheat, bulgur (cracked wheat), and other old-wheat grains, barley, amaranth and rye contain the highest amount of fibre when brown rice contains the least.
Amaranth, quinoa, and buckwheat are called “pseudo-grains”, and are included in the category of cereal grains because their nutritional profile, preparation, and use are extremely similar.
Add Whole Grains into your diet:
J.I. Rodale, The Health Finder (London: Rodale Press).
Jacqueline Verrett, Ph.D., Eating May Be Hazardous to Your Health (New York: Simon and Schuster).
Ross Hume Hall, Food for Nought, The Decline in Nutrition, (New York: Random House, Inc.)
Rudolph Ballentine, M.D., Diet & Nutrition.
Journal of Nutrition, May 2011;141(5):1011S-22S.
British Journal of Nutrition, April 18, 2011: 1-4
Diabetes Care, July 2007; 30(7):1753-7
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, October 2010; 92(4):733-40
British Journal of Nutrition, January 2008; vol 99(1):110-20.
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This Blog offers an easy-to-read condensed descriptive of food groups, nutrients, and their role on our body; cooking processes; world news with major impact on food and consumers; comprehensive reviews of restaurants (Menus, Food-on-plate and Quality of Service); and easy-to-follow Exquisite recipes, as well as healthy snacks and juices.
Olivier is a Michelin trained chef, a registered Naturopath and Nutritional Therapist, embracing fully his passion for good food and healthy eating.