Bread Should Be ‘The Staff of Life’

Bread is the foundation of good nutrition. That’s real bread. Whole grains include all three parts of the grain kernel: the bran, the outer layer or the fiber; the endosperm containing the complex carbohydrates; and the germ containing B and E vitamins, phytochemicals, and antioxidants.White or refined flours remove the bran and germ to provide a finer texture to baked goods and in the process removes healthful elements. According to a Tufts University Health and Nutrition Letter, 40 percent of Americans never eat any whole grains! Shocking, isn’t it?

Ezekiel Bread contains all that’s needed to sustain life. Ezekiel Bread is made from sprouted wheat, barley, beans, lentils, millet, and spelt. When these whole grains are sprouted and combined, a complete protein is created.

ally-cake.JPGUnfortunately today, most children eat bread with the nutritional value of a birthday cake. Carefully read the nutrition label on bread packaging to identify the brands containing whole grains. Some loaves are labeled “wheat bread” or “enriched wheat flour,” but on closer examination of the ingredients, there’s not much of the wheat grain in the bread at all.

Whole-wheat has hundreds of phytochemicals, although they’re concentrated in the bran and germ. “Enriched” listed on the package label indicates the nutrients have been removed from the flour; then the remaining flour has been artificially enriched.

Count to three to identify the most healthful loaf of bread:

1) For a good loaf, use the squeeze test. Your squeeze test is eliminating the soft and spongy breads, because these will contain mostly refined white flour and chemicals. If the loaf is soft, put it back on the shelf. You want to avoid the fluffy brands and purchase a more dense loaf of bread. Of course the squeeze test won’t work for hard-crusted breads, such as French or Italian. For these breads, move immediately to the next step.

2) For a better loaf of bread, turn a firm loaf to its side to locate the fiber content on the nutrition label. It should have at leastthree grams of fiber per serving. This’ll be a more healthful loaf of bread.

3) The best bread will contain at lease three grams of fiber, plus, “whole-grain” will appear before the first listed ingredient on the nutrition label. When wheat is listed, it should read “whole-wheat flour.” The most healthful loaf will have just a few ingredients, such as whole-wheat (or other whole-grain), water, yeast, and salt. Bite for bite, your family will receive more nourishment in this loaf of bread! This bread is the staff (force) of life.

You’ll find the most nutritious loves of bread in a refrigerated case in your whole foods store.

There’s more information on healthful foods in my book, Baby Bites: Transforming a Picky Eater into a Healthy Eater.

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