Whole grains are an important part of our healthy recipes and the healthy plate. They provide the fiber and give creative texture needed to satisfy our expectation of taste with a health benefit.
What is a whole grain? Why are they healthier than the white, refined, and polished looking versions of bread, cereals, pastas, and pasties? The answer is that they are intact. The seed or kernel of a grain consist of three parts; the bran, the germ and the endosperm. Refining removes the outer layer and the germ of the grain (the bran), which is where most of the nutrients are located. According to the Whole Grain Council 25% of a the protein is lost, along with at least seventeen key nutrients.
How do you know that a product contains whole grains? Look for the word "whole" on the ingredient list. Also look for the FDA-approved health claim: "Diets rich in whole grain
foods and other plant foods and low in total fat, saturated fat, and
cholesterol may reduce the risk of heart disease and some cancers." This
is can be found on whole-grain products that contain at least 51% whole grain
ingredients (by weight) and are also low in fat. Whole grains are naturally a darker shade of brown. However when cooked they become lighter.
Whole grains are heart healthy and diabetic friendly. They provide the much needed fiber and help regulate blood sugar levels. They are the major source of complex carbohydrate foods containing protein, vitamins, minerals and fiber. Many of them can be cooked in a rice cooker.
Whole Grain Council