Tuesday, July 31, 2018


Whole grains are an essential part of any balanced diet.  They contain vitamins, minerals and ample amounts of fiber.  Fiber has been scientifically proven to prevent certain types of cancers and improve digestion.  The USDA recommends 1/2 your grain consumption (6 oz daily) to originate from whole grain products.  First off, what is a whole grain?  

Whole grain products include all 3 parts of the original grain: bran, germ and endosperm.  Refined grains (grains that aren't whole) have gone through a process in production where most of the bran and germ are removed, eliminating most of the fiber and nutrients.  

Note:**(Some refined grains have vitamins and minerals added back into the product, called enriched grains.  Although, the enrichment process does not provide as much fiber or match the content found naturally in a whole grain product. )

Color isn't always and indication for whole grains.  In fact, some manufacturers are pretty skilled at tricking their consumers into thinking their product is whole grain.

Avoid falling into these consumer pit falls by knowing these tips, for determining a whole grain from a "whole grain imitator".

FOOD LABEL 101: Food labels are an excellent resource for identifying whole grains. Pay attention to the ingredient list, if the first ingredient says "whole" or "100%" you know its whole.  Be leery of the word "enriched" if you see this you know you have an imitator on your hands. 

MISLEADING CLAIMS- Product claims can be very misleading.  Though manufactures are required to state honest claims, they can and do twist the truth.  Avoid phrases like "made with whole grains, "mulit-grain"and "enriched grain". These products may contain a whole grain, but it is NOT a whole grain product.  

KNOW YOUR GRAINS: Know what to look for.  Here is a list of common whole grains. Try to incorporate them into your diet by substituting them for refined/enriched grains your already consuming.
  • Whole wheat
  • Whole oats or oatmeal
  • Whole grain corn/ Popcorn
  • Buckwheat
  • Whole grain barley
  • Brown rice / Wild rice
  • Quinoa

LOOK FOR THE LOGO: Similar to Organic, None GMO, and Kosher products, Whole Grain products can contain a stamp indicating that it is a certified whole grain product.  If you see this stamp, you know you have the real deal!

Whole grains play an essential role in any balanced diet.  Commit to making 1/2 your grains whole today!

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