Did you know that grains are a staple food in households around the world? Grains have three parts: the bran which is the nutritious outer layer, the germ which is the seed’s nutrient-rich embryo and the endosperm which is the germ’s food supply. On the other hand, whole grains are grains that have all three parts intact and they’re typically high in iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, selenium, B vitamins and dietary fiber.
Here’s some examples of whole grain foods that you should add to your diet:
• Whole Oats – Steel-cut oats and rolled oats are the healthiest whole grains you should eat. Whole oats are gluten-free, has many vitamins, minerals and antioxidants as well.
• Whole Wheat – Whole wheat is a nutritious alternative to regular wheat and a rich source of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, gluten and dietary fiber.
• Whole-Grain Rye – Rye is a member of the wheat family and is typically more nutritious than wheat. Rye contains more minerals with fewer carbs and is high in fiber. Only dark rye flour, rye meal and pumpernickel flour are considered whole grain.
• Brown Rice – Brown rice is a healthier alternative to white rice because it’s a whole grain. Also, brown rice is gluten-free.
• Whole-Grain Breads – Whole-grain bread products are an easy way to add whole grains to your diet. Be sure to select breads with visible grains or seeds because they’re more nutritious.
• Popcorn – Popcorn is a healthy snack that’s considered a whole grain but beware of the commercial popcorn because it has extra unhealthy ingredients.
Remember, whole grains are processed in small increments which makes it more nutritious than refined grains. It is important for people to replace refined grains in favor of whole grains to receive health benefits, such as lower risk of chronic diseases like heart disease, type 2 diabetes and cancers.