Sunday, May 20, 2007

It's All About Whole Wheat, Baby!

We all know by now that whole wheat is the best way to go as far as our weight and our health are concerned. Problem is - many don't know why and most don't know how to tell the difference.

A little mini lesson on whole grains here: Whole grains are just that. Whole! They still have their 3 original components - the outer shell (bran) which has all the fiber and B vitamins - the germ, which has more B vitamins and also phytochemicals (they protect us against disease) - and the endosperm, which has carbs and protein. When a product is refined - the bran & germ are stripped away and you're left with the carbs & protein. They threw all the good stuff out in the trash!

Here's the scoop though. Most of us (myself in included) figured I knew how to spot a whole grain product. Brown bread instead of white right? Wrong. A product labeled 100% Wheat? Wrong again. (that just means it could have some, a lot or NO whole wheat). Multi-grain? Nope. You still don't know if the grains are still whole or refined. Even f it says "An excellent source of whole grain" - that only means it has 16 grams per serving (which is about 27%) -not really an excellent source in my opinion. So what DO you look for? The label must say 100% whole grain or 100% whole wheat. Anything else isn't the real deal.

There are lots of replacements you can start making right now besides just whole wheat bread. They make WW english muffins, WW pitas, WW pizza crusts, WW rolls, WW tortilla shells, WW pasta.... Just remember to look for the 100%!

Eating the whole grain has several benefits. It's good for you (we women need those B vitamins), it has antioxidants (in those phytochemicals) and....drum roll fills you up with all that fiber and keeps you fuller longer. Make sure you get a whole grain product in your tummy each morning. Studies show that those who do - eat less through out the rest of the day.

So there you have it. Something I learned from Dr. Oz .

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