Breads made easy
Wednesday, July 2017
Bread made easy
For awhile Bread was the villain of the food world! Banned from kitchens everywhere and feared by many. You can now enjoy many different types of bread knowing its doing your health good.
For heart-healthy Omega-3 fatty acids, fish oil and oily fish are typically the best supplement and animal source, respectively. But for vegans, that's not an option (i.e. animal by-products are a no go). Flax seeds, however, are. So it's a no-brainer flax seed bread is a great alternative to your regular loaf. Research shows flax seed and flax bread can reduce your risk of heart disease, cancer, stroke, and diabetes to boot.
In a study conducted at Lund University in Sweden, mice were fed whole grain diets based on either wheat or rye for 22 weeks. Whole grain rye reduced body
weight, slightly improved insulin sensitivity, and lowered total cholesterol in the mice. Further research, published in Nutrition Journal, found people
who ate rye bread (with three varying levels of rye bran—the highest amount of bran) for breakfast experienced decreased hunger and desire to
eat 8 hours later compared to people who ate wheat bread. Rye bread is made with rye flour, which comes from a wheat-like plant.
Oats have always been touted as one of the healthiest source of good carbs. They're slow-digesting and make you feel fuller longer. It's thanks to their high source of cholesterol-lowering fiber called beta-glucan, which has also been shown to reduce certain cancers, like colon cancer, diabetes, digestive problems, and heart disease. Oats are also richer in protein than wheat (about twice the amount), which is obviously beneficial if you're trying to build and repair muscles; they have a bevy of vitamins, like vitamin E, and nutrients, like iron and calcium. Oat bread may contain whole grain oat groats, steel cut oats, and thick oats.
Whole grain foods are a healthy choice because they contain a bounty of nutrients, fiber, and healthy plant compounds naturally found in the grain. Look
for products that list the first ingredient as "whole wheat," "whole oats" or a similar whole grain. And to clarify, whole grains can mean it has one
of many types of healthy grains included in the product, while whole wheat labels the specific grain that's being used.
Just like whole wheat and whole grain are different, so too are multigrain and whole grain breads. Whole grain means all parts of the grain kernel—the
bran, germ and endosperm—are used to make the bread or product. Multigrain—like 7- or 12-grain bread—means a food has more than one
type of grain, although they might not all be whole grains. You want to choose multigrain bread with whole grains.
Brown rice bread
Brown rice bread is a good option for men and women who are vegan and gluten-free because you still get the benefits of fiber, proteins, thiamine, calcium,
magnesium, fiber, and potassium natural to the rice.
Gluten-free bread is void of wheat, rye, and barley. Four other starches are used in their place—corn starch, rice flour, tapioca starch, and potato flour. This is obviously the go-to for men and women with Celiac disease or those with gluten allergies. But if you don't have either, don't buy it. A gluten-free diet consists of stripped foods, meaning you're eating products void of a lot of nutrients.
It's more labor-intensive to make sourdough bread. There's a longer rise time and that increases the lactic acid and creates an ideal pH for the enzyme
phytase. This enzyme breaks down phytates—which bind to minerals, like iron, zinc, and manganese, slowing their absorption, more effectively
than other breads. Also, the long fermentation process allows the bacteria to break down the carbs and gluten in the bread, making it easier for you
to digest and releasing the nutrients so they're easier to absorb.