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Whole Grain Benefits

Whole grains vs refined grains: Which is better for you?



Whether it’s the “slightly different” taste or a “worth considering option”, many people have included whole grains as part of their daily diet. Whole grain products are considered extremely healthy and are diverse. In India rajgira or amaranth, kuttu or buckwheat, sabudana or pearl sago, lapsi or broken wheat or dalia, barley or sattu or jau, ragi or Finger millet, Bajra or pearl millet, jowar or sorghum are some varieties that are easy to find.

“I started consuming Kodri, a whole grain that is pressure cooked like rice, looks like Dalia, but is more filling. I also have homemade multigrain thalipeeth and ragi chips to satisfy unwanted food cravings, ”said Priyamvada Mangal from Mumbai. “It’s part of our tradition and is also considered healthier than grains like rice – which makes it an option (worth trying),” said Vignesh Raghupathy from Chennai, who enjoys Ragi Dosa and Bajra or Kamba Dosa once in a few days.

And then there is Chhavi Auplish, who switched to whole grain products as part of an experiment. “Since we’ve been eating white rice and wheat since we were children, whole grains may taste a little different, but it’s a welcome change,” says Auplish, who eats oats. millet, Barley and Ragi, said.

Call it a health concern or just a change, whole grains are gradually regaining their lost appeal; This goes to nutritionists and experts who stress the need to eat “whole and local foods”. “Our ancestors always ate whole grains like bajra, jowar, millet, ragi, khapli, hand milled rice, whole grains, etc., but over time we have changed due to western influence and busy lifestyles (because whole grains take time to cook) removed from our roots and started consuming nifty variations because they seem to have better texture and shelf life, ”Luke Coutinho, holistic lifestyle coach for integrative medicine, told

What are whole grains?

Whole grains are basically the grain of any grain that contains germs, bran, and endosperm. This also includes pseudograins such as Buckwheat, Broken wheat, bulgur wheat, millet, and whole grains such as ready-to-eat cereals, said Alpa Momaya, senior nutritionist at HealthifyMe. “And they are among the first to be cultivated by mankind. These may have been around as early as 9000 BC. Chr. “, Said head chef Sanjeev Kapoor on his website.

According to an article published in the Journal of the Association of Physicians of India ( Whole Grains and Health: Perspective for Asian Indians (, whole grains are shown to be “low in calories and high in nutrients” at risk Type 2 diabetes“Heart diseases such as high cholesterol and obesity”.

Why are they considered better?

“Because of our sedentary lifestyle, highly refined grains caused diseases of civilization compared to our ancestors, who did more physical work. The nutritional value of the grain also decreases when it is refined, which in turn causes metabolic disorders, ”said Dr. Manjunath Sukumaran, holistic health coach, head trainer and founder of Harmony Wellness Concepts, who is in favor of a full switch to full grain for the prevention and relief of lifestyle problems such as blood pressure, diabetes or weight gain, in his Facebook videos.

Bran, the outermost layer, is rich in fiber and an important group of B-complex vitamins and minerals such as iron, folic acid and magnesium. Coutinho mentioned that bran, germ-containing fiber, essential vitamins and trace elements such as B vitamin, zinc, manganese, boron are needed by our body for health and immunity. “When these grains are grafted, the fiber and nutrients are removed. So while a whole grain offers the benefit of fiber, which benefits our blood sugar levels, satiety factor, and lipids, refined varieties don’t, and then we call rice bad for weight and diabetes“, Explained Coutinho.

Foods like white rice and refined wheat have one high glycemic index (GI) – the rate at which blood sugar levels rise after eating food. “Foods with a high GI lead to an increase in the level of insulin in the blood. Continuous consumption of white foods (white rice, sugar, and refined wheat flour) can lead to insulin resistance (type 2 diabetes) in the long run, ”said Momaya.

How does the whole grain mechanism work for the body?

“A high-fiber diet will keep your digestive system clean and active by adding weight to your stool. It also helps lower cholesterol by preventing cholesterol from being absorbed into the bloodstream. High-fiber foods also help maintain insulin levels in the body as they take time to break down in the digestive tract. A slower breakdown of food ensures that there is no increase in insulin after a meal, ”said Momaya.

Instead of a “3G or 4G diet or a three-grain or four-grain diet”, Dr. Sukumaran anyone starting all day (breakfast and lunch) with a single grain diet and for dinner without grain, ideally three hours before bed. “A high intake of grain throughout the day made the digestive process more cumbersome. In addition, there is the quality of grains such as wheat and rice, which interrupt our metabolism due to the low-fiber diet. Instead, it’s time to go for whole grains that are high in fiber and support your metabolism, ”said Dr. Sukumaran and listed some options for cereal-free dinner such as soup or salads or Egg pizza.

What should you watch out for when adding whole grain products?

Most people today choose instant oatmeal as their breakfast option because they are convenient. However, instant oats have little or no nutritional value and can cause blood sugar spikes, experts argue. Real benefits can be obtained from oat groats or steel-cut oats, said Coutinho.

However, whole grains can be prepared in a similar way to your regular meals. For example, you can replace normal rice with millet and chopped vegetables, normal wheat roti can be mixed with another flour in a ratio of 1: 4, or you can opt for a multigrain flour, said Momaya. “You can make meals more colorful and attractive by adding different colored vegetables that can be eaten 3-4 times a week. It is recommended that these changes be made gradually, “she said, adding,” a mix of regular wheat and rice would help improve compliance. “

Adding herbs and spices like cilantro and garlic to rice dishes can improve their flavor, or toasted peanuts and sesame seeds to your breakfast dishes can give them that extra crispness, suggested Momaya.

*millet and ragi can be made into a cheela with a vegetable filling or a simple dosa.
* Khus khus (poppy seeds) can be used to make upma with vegetables.
* Millet can be used to make a regular vegetable pulao and served with vegetable raita.
* Rotis can be made from millet.
* Grains like Andean millet, Bajra or Jowar can be prepared as a bhakri and served with sabji. You can add seasonal veggies to it and serve with yogurt for a complete combination high in fiber and protein.
* Oats can be made into a pulp and served with some chopped dried fruit and nuts, or you can make oat and vegetable idli / porridge or oat roti.

Whole wheat flour is mainly used for making Indian breads such as roti, phulka, parantha and puri. “It’s also used in baked goods, although it’s not always the main ingredient. This is because it adds a certain heaviness that prevents the dough from rising as high as it does with refined flour. Therefore, it is often mixed with refined flour, ”Kapoor said on his website. But this can be remedied if enough water is added to the dough and kneaded longer to develop enough gluten, he recommended. “Also, if the dough is allowed to rise twice before the resulting baked product is shaped, it can be light as needed. Add fats such as butter or oil, and dairy products such as milk alone or buttermilk or yoghurt can also help the dough rise significantly. “

Are whole grains suitable for everyone?

Since whole grains come with their outer layers, it is necessary to choose those that are grown ethically without chemicals or we could risk arsenic poisoning. “In addition, certain whole grain products with a higher fiber content such as Bajra or Jowar may sometimes not be suitable for people with weak and inflamed intestines with irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease and may irritate the intestinal lining. “You have to make an informed decision and choose either other alternatives or sprouted varieties that can also improve digestibility,” advised Coutinho.

Is the price of whole grains off-putting, considering that a kilogram of wheat can cost 20 rupees while whole grains cost 60 rupees for the same amount? “When demand is low, costs rise because farmers and sellers also have to secure and earn a living. Nowadays, whole grains can have a higher price tag, but that’s why it is necessary to remember the way our ancestors used them, ”said Coutinho.

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Whole Grain Benefits

Can a Low-Carb Diet Help Your Heart Health?



Instead, the researchers designed what they considered to be a practicable and relatively healthy diet for each group. All participants ate meals such as vegetable omelets, chicken burritos with black beans, spiced London broil, vegetarian chili, cauliflower soup, roasted lentil salads, and grilled salmon. But the high-carb group also ate foods like whole grain bread, brown rice, English multigrain muffins, strawberry jam, pasta, skimmed milk, and vanilla yogurt. The low-carb group avoided bread, rice and fruit spreads as well as sugary yoghurts. Instead, their meals contained more high-fat ingredients like whole milk, cream, butter, guacamole, olive oil, almonds, peanuts, pecans and macadamias, and soft cheese.

After five months, people on a low-carb diet did not experience any adverse changes in their cholesterol levels, even though they obtained 21 percent of their daily calories from saturated fat. That amount is more than double what the federal government’s nutritional guidelines recommend. For example, their LDL cholesterol, the so-called bad variety, stayed about the same as those on a high-carbohydrate diet that got just 7 percent of their daily calories from saturated fat. Tests also showed that the low-carb group had about a 15 percent reduction in lipoprotein levels (a), a fat particle in the blood that has been strongly linked to developing heart disease and stroke.

The low-carb group also saw improvements in metabolic measures related to the development of type 2 diabetes. Researchers rated their lipoprotein insulin resistance scores, or LPIR, a measure of insulin resistance that looks at the size and concentration of cholesterol-carrying molecules in the blood. Large studies have shown that people with high LPIR levels are more likely to develop diabetes. In the new study, people on a low-carb diet saw their LPIR levels decrease by about 5 percent – reducing their risk of diabetes – while those on a high-carb diet increased slightly. People on a moderate carbohydrate diet had no change in their LPIR values.

The low-carb group also had other improvements. They had a drop in their triglycerides, a type of fat in their blood that has been linked to heart attacks and strokes. And they had elevated levels of adiponectin, a hormone that helps lower inflammation and make cells more sensitive to insulin, which is a good thing. High levels of body-wide inflammation have been linked to a number of age-related diseases, including heart disease and diabetes.

The low-carb diet used in the study largely eliminated highly processed and sugary foods, but still left room for “high quality” carbohydrates from whole fruits and vegetables, beans, legumes and other plants, said Dr. David Ludwig, author of the study and an endocrinologist at Harvard Medical School. “It’s mainly focused on eliminating the processed carbohydrates that many people are now realizing to be among the least healthy aspects of our food supply,” said Dr. Ludwig, co-director of the New Balance Foundation Obesity Prevention Center at Boston Children’s Hospital.

Dr. Ludwig emphasized that the results do not apply to the very low carbohydrate levels typical of ketogenic diets, which have been shown to lead to large increases in LDL cholesterol in some people. But he said the study shows that people can get metabolic and cardiovascular benefits by replacing the processed carbohydrates in their diet with fat, including saturated fat, without worsening their cholesterol levels.

The new study cost $ 12 million and was largely funded by the Nutrition Science Initiative, a nonprofit research group. It was also supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health, the New Balance Foundation, and others.

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Whole Grain Benefits

5 Breakfast Myths That You Could Be Messing With Your Morning Meal



Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, at least that’s what our parents always told us. But how do we know which breakfast dish suits us best? Whether it’s too much sugar or too little nutrients, many breakfast options depend on nutritional myths. And these myths can do more harm than good when it comes to your morning meal.

We met with the molecular nutritionist Dr. Emma Beckett, who shattered some great breakfast myths that could keep you from maximizing your morning goodness.

Here’s what she shared with us about breakfast myths.

Myth # 1: Traditional breakfast food is bad for you

The truth: “Some high-carb foods like whole grain bread and breakfast cereals contain fiber that helps us feel fuller …”

For those who have busy mornings to complete endless chores, or even those who don’t bother making gourmet meals every morning, granola is the top choice. It’s simple, convenient, and tastes damn good.

The best thing about grain, according to Dr. Beckett that it’s a great way to make sure we’re getting tons of nutrients in the morning. Packed with iron, B vitamins and fiber, muesli is a better breakfast choice than you might think.

Dr. Beckett even gave us some great tips on how to spice up your morning cereal bowl too:

“Grains go well with other nutritious breakfast foods like Greek yogurt and nuts, which are sources of protein. Protein is essential in the diet as it is the most filling macronutrient that can help reduce grazing habits throughout the day, ”she said via email.

If you’re not sure which cereal brand is good to grab, Beckett suggested going for Kellogg’s All Bran or Sultana Bran because they are “high in fiber and have a 4.5 or even the maximum rating of 5 health stars . Grains like this have been a popular choice for nearly 100 years. “

Who would have thought cereal was so good?

Myth # 2: Processed = Bad?

The truth: “Most foods have to undergo processing in order to be edible and digestible – processing is a broad term that encompasses cooking, slicing and packaging.”

Many of us have been afraid to buy something marked as processed, but it is actually an important step for most foods. Processing sometimes has more to do with preserving the food and avoiding waste than with nutritional value.

Dr. Beckett explained, “Key nutrients like protein are not necessarily lost in processing; they can sometimes be retained or made more accessible through processing. Others like B vitamins and iron can be added back when they are lost in a process called fortification. “

In fact, the common breakfast suspects like cereal and bread are often fortified with added nutrients and processed because they are affordable, accessible, long-lasting, and popular. This just makes it easier for us to make sure we are adding the right substances to our bodies to start the day.

However, this does not mean that the all-clear will be given for all processed foods. Dr. Beckett notes that it is still important to consider how much a food has been processed, with products that have been ultra-processed being consumed in moderation.

Myth # 3: Eating healthy is expensive

The truth: “According to a recently published Australian model-based study, it is possible to improve the Australian diet while spending less money on groceries by choosing inexpensive, nutritious foods, improving nutritional quality and potentially reducing a family’s food bills by over 25 Percent. “

A common misconception about healthy eating is that our wallets are pinched and products need to be consumed quickly. Surprisingly, there are actually tons of healthy food options that are relatively cheap for what you get out of them and don’t spoil as quickly. Foods like whole grain bread and cereal are actually pretty budget-friendly and last a relatively long time.

One twist I wasn’t prepared for is that canned and frozen fruits and vegetables are just as healthy as they are fresh (as long as they’re not in syrup). If you’re worried about that bunch of bananas you bought and you won’t finish before they go, toss them in the freezer! They last longer and do not lose any health properties.

“When you do your research and shop, healthy eating really doesn’t have to be as expensive as it may seem!”

Myth # 4: Breakfast cereals are too sugary and have no nutritional value

The truth: “Australian data has shown that grains make up less than 3% of the added sugar in the average diet. Many cereals contain whole grains and fiber that many people cannot get enough of. “

According to Dr. Beckett, many breakfast cereals are “full of vital vitamins and minerals that are important for health and well-being and the most important source of iron in the Australian diet, especially for children.”

Obviously, muesli’s sugar content varies, with some sweeter ones available if that’s your cup of tea (or should I say your bowl of muesli), but most are moderately sweetened and many are sweetened by added fruits that contain natural sugars.

“For example, half of Kellogg’s 55 cereals contain 2 or less teaspoons of sugar per bowl. By updating the recipes, over 700 tons of sugar and 300 tons of salt were removed from the Australian diet – that’s the weight of about seven blue whales! “

Myth # 5: If it’s not whole grain, it doesn’t contain fiber

The truth: “While whole grain foods contain fiber, not all fiber-containing foods contain whole grains.”

How’s that for a mind-bender?

If you’re like me, fiber is confusing and I’m not sure what it is or where to find it. Fortunately, Dr. Beckett broken it down for us.

“Fibers are in the outer part of the grain, the bran. The bran can be removed from the grain and used in food, ”she explained.

This means that foods made with bran aren’t always whole grains, but they do contain a lot of fiber.

According to Dr. Beckett, I’m not the only one confused about fiber. Two in three Aussies fail to meet their daily fiber goals. What’s worse is that four in five Australians don’t eat enough fiber to protect themselves from chronic illness. Yikes

“For most of us, adequate fiber intake is between 25 and 30 grams per day. That might sound hard, but getting your daily dose is really easy when you’re eating high-fiber options like high-fiber breakfast cereals, whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and nuts, “she said.

Dr. Beckett then explained that not all whole grains were made equal (in the fiber department):

“Did you know that different whole grains have different amounts and types of fiber,” she said.

“For example, whole grain brown rice and corn both naturally have less fiber compared to other whole grain products like whole wheat and oats, which have higher amounts of fiber.”

The interesting thing, however, is that just one whole grain contains less fiber, doesn’t mean it’s not beneficial – it is!

Whole grains are exactly what they sound like – it’s whole whole grains. Fiber is only one component of whole grains, and all of the components work together to provide health benefits.

The more you know!

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Whole Grain Benefits

Dr. Bridget Gibson: Eight ways to get your metabolism moving | Free



Metabolism is the chemical reaction in the body’s cells that converts food into energy. Our bodies need this energy to do everything from moving to thinking to growing.

If a person’s metabolism is the rate at which their body burns calories for energy, then are there things they can do to increase that rate? And is metabolism the key to weight management and why do some people struggle and others never seem to gain weight?

There are conflicting theories about how your metabolism works and whether it can be boosted to help people lose weight faster. Let’s get the facts about what can be done while losing weight.

What is Metabolism?

Metabolism is how your body uses food for energy and then burns that energy to keep your body going.

How can I boost my metabolism?

1. Eat your meals on a schedule: Eating your meals at the same times throughout the day helps your body maintain a metabolic balance. In other words, if you overeat and then don’t eat for a long time, your body can overcompensate and burn calories more slowly or store more fat cells.

2. Don’t skimp on calories: Skipping meals or reducing your calorie count too much can slow your metabolism down so your body can conserve energy. Make healthy choices that will keep you within the recommended number of calories but still fill you up.

3. Drink green tea – While studies are inconclusive, some research suggests that green tea extract may play a role in promoting fat metabolism. Green tea can also be a great alternative to sugary juices and sodas, and can help ensure you get enough water during the day.

4. Do resistance training and high-intensity workouts: Lifting weights and doing exercises that use resistance weights or body weight will help build muscle. Muscle mass has a higher metabolic rate than fat, which means that muscle mass needs more energy to maintain and can boost your metabolism. To do this, add a routine that includes alternating periods of higher and lower intensity to burn more energy.

5. Drink plenty of water – Drinking is important for the body to function optimally. Water is necessary for an optimal metabolism and can help with weight loss.

6. Get plenty of sleep – When you don’t get enough sleep, your body releases the hormone ghrelin, which can make you hungry. It also releases less leptin, a hormone that helps you feel full. Getting enough sleep can help keep these hormones balanced and can prevent you from overeating.

7. Reduce stress: Stress affects hormone levels and can cause the body to produce too much cortisol, the hormone that regulates your appetite and can lead to unhealthy eating habits that, in turn, disrupt your metabolism. Stress is also closely related to the quality of sleep.

8. Get enough B vitamins: B vitamins in foods like bananas, baked potatoes, eggs, orange juice, peanut butter, peas, spinach, and whole grains are essential for a functioning metabolism. B vitamins help your body metabolize carbohydrates, proteins and fats and use the energy stored in food.

Do I burn energy when I am not active?

Yes, even when you are not moving, your body uses energy performing functions such as breathing and keeping your heart beating. This is known as the “resting (or baseline) metabolic rate”.

What determines a person’s resting metabolic rate?

– Genetics: The hereditary traits passed down from your parents and grandparents play a role, but luckily there are other metabolic factors that we can control, such as diet and exercise.

—Age: Most people’s metabolism naturally begins to slow down around the age of 30.

—Gender: On average, women have a slower metabolism than men. This is because men usually have more muscle and therefore burn more calories.

—Weight: People who weigh less need less energy (fewer calories) to keep their bodies energized. As you lose weight, your metabolism slows down too, so losing and maintaining weight can be more difficult over time.

Three tips for healthy weight loss

The bottom line when it comes to healthy weight loss is to be aware of your caloric intake (and the reduced caloric needs as you age) and focus on the factors that you can control.

1. Start with the goal of losing 5 to 10 percent of your weight through more physical activity and healthier diets. The benefits can be dramatic.

2. For example, a person weighing 250 pounds who lost 5 to 10 percent would lose 13 to 25 pounds, which could lower their risk of diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and some cancers. Other benefits that you may actually feel sooner include more energy, less pain, and feeling less breathless or out of breath – which makes it a lot easier to keep moving.

3. Celebrate your victories at every milestone. When you hit 5 percent, feel better, or notice an increase in energy, give yourself a gold star, do your merry dance, or reward yourself with a favorite activity. You deserve it and the benefits are just beginning.

Slowly and steadily the race wins! Extreme diets and fitness routines are not sustainable in the long run. The saying “it’s a marathon, not a sprint” is true. Healthy weight loss and control is about what you can do each day to get more exercise and eat more fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains than carbohydrates, fried foods, and sugar.

Dr. Bridget Gibson is the general practitioner for Brookwood Baptist Health.

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