Some Facts About Whole Grains

wholegrainfoodIf you’ve ever done any research about eating healthy, then you know that one thing most nutrition experts agree on is that whole grains are absolutely necessary for a healthy diet.   Even if you’re trying to reduce your intake of carbs, it is still important to incorporate some whole grains (“good carbs”) into your diet. 

Refined grains, such as white bread and white rice, have had their germ and bran removed.   The removal of the germ and bran reduce the amount of fiber.  In fact, if you eat a slice of whole grain bread instead of white, you will usually get about twice the protein and twice the fiber. 

Unfortunately, the bread companies don’t always make it easy to spot which items are the best when you’re trying to eat more whole grains.  They splash phrases like “multi-grain” on the label, but such phrases can be misleading. 

That’s because “multigrain” isn’t the same as “whole grain”.  Make sure the first word on the ingredient label is “whole”.  The nutrition you need is in the part of the grain that is removed during processing.  There might be 20 kinds of grain (hence the word “multigrain” on the label), but if they are not WHOLE grains, the health benefit isn’t there.   You’ve got to check the labels carefully to make sure you’re eating actual whole grains. 

While it might sound a bit confusing, it’s really not.  Below is a list of a few common whole grain foods.

  • Popcorn (easy on the butter!)
  • Oatmeal (avoid the flavored varieties as they usually contain a lot of sugar)
  • Brown rice
  • Barley
  • A variety of whole grain breads

Whole grains are essential for heart health and, because they are filling and full of fiber, they make losing weight a lot easier. (Don’t you just love anything that makes losing weight easier?)

If you do not currently eat a nutritious diet, start by making one small change.  Add a few whole grains to your daily intake.  Toss an extra fresh vegetable on the plate at dinner time.  Even if you change nothing else, if you increase the amount of whole grains, fruits and vegetables in your diet you’re making important positive improvements.

Part of the boot camp experience is a one hour nutrition class.  You’ll learn the basics of healthy eating (and it really is a lot easier than some people think!), and you’ll be able to ask any questions that you might have.   The nutrition class will provide information that you’ll be able to use for the rest of your life, and will be a foundation for your goal of eating a healthy diet.

Don’t forget about the free boot camp workout this Saturday.  I hope to see every one of my readers there.  You just can’t imagine how attending boot camp can set you in the right direction and give you the confidence to know that you CAN live a healthy lifestyle.  Please come and check it out.

Again, even if you only make one change to your diet this month, let it be the addition of some fresh veggies and whole grains.  You’ll be amazed at what a big difference this one change will make in how you feel.

See you at camp!

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