The bread walls of your grocery store can be daunting. There seems to be more and more healthy choices. Labels such as “multigrain”, “made from whole wheat”, and “grains and seeds” are displayed.
Look for the whole grains listed first in the ingredient list to decipher the label and make a healthy choice. Whole grains have all three parts: bran, germ, and endosperm, and are more nutritious than refined grains that do not contain two outer layers. Whole grains are rich in fiber and are generally full.
Better News-Whole grains are associated with a reduced risk of heart disease, diabetes, certain cancers and other health problems
However, labels can be confusing. For example, a loaf of bread labeled “multigrain” or “12 grains” can contain a mixture of grains and white flour. Breads labeled “100% whole grains” or “100% whole wheat” are not mixed with other flours such as white.
Less than half of the breads labeled as oats, a multi-grain multi-grain bread, according to Consumer Reports, actually contained only whole grains.
In addition to the high proportion of whole grains, consumer report experts have found that the best healthy breads in bread have minimal additives, 2-3 grams of fiber per slice, less than 150 milligrams of sodium. And says there are less than 2 grams of added sugar.
Nuts and seeds are an added bonus to bread-they add flavor, crunches, healthy fats, and fiber.
Here’s a chunk of bread that CR has toasted: 365 Whole Foods Market Organic Ancient Grains upgrades sandwiches. The slices contain 16 grams of whole grains, with less sugar and sodium added.
Use Nature’s Own 100% Whole Wheat to make your morning toast even better. The amount of sugar added per slice is less than 1 gram.
Dave’s Killer Bread Organic Power Seed slices contain more than 19 grams of whole grains. Put peanut butter on top and make a snack with plenty of protein!
For those who are wondering if homemade bread is healthier, the answer is certainly that it could be. CR points out that using homemade can avoid excess sugar and additives, and you can look for recipes specially made for whole grains.