The Truth About “Multigrain” Products


Do you regularly buy “multigrain” products?  Do you consider them a healthier choice?  Here is what you need to know.  The term “multigrain” simply means “more than one grain”.[1]  This term does not tell you anything about the quality of the grains, the type of grains or the amount of grains used in a particular product.  Some “multigrain” products are healthy and some are not.  Some are made with white flour as the first and primary ingredient, while others are made with a wide variety of 100% whole grains.  Choosing products that are 100% whole grain can be  important to health.  Research  supports that eating whole grains may  reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure.[2]  Here is what to look for when choosing a “multigrain” product:

  • If the front of the package says that the product is “100% whole grain,” you know that all of the grains used in that product are “whole” grains.  This means they contain the bran and germ portion of the grain – the parts that are discarded when making refined grains, like white flour.
  • You can also check the ingredients list.  All of the grains listed should be whole grains, such as whole wheat, whole rye, whole grain corn, brown rice, barley, bulgur or oats.  If the product contains white flour, it will be listed as “wheat flour” or “enriched wheat flour”.  Do your best to purchase products that contain only whole grains.  Your body will thank you for it!

[1] Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary.  “Definition of Multigrain.” (

[2] Lillioja, S., et al.  “Whole grains, type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, and hypertension: Links to the aleurone preferred over indigestible fiber.”  Biofactors. 2013 May;39(3):242-58.

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