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Whole Grains: Too Legit to Quit

By Sara Butler

A lot of fad diets want you to believe that grains are bad for you and your health – a danger to your waistline and your wellness. Well, that’s a bunch of bull. Refined grains aren’t good for you, this is true. But whole grains have a legitimate claim as a healthy food that should be a part of your diet. Here are some reasons whole grains are too legit for you to quit!

What Are Whole Grains Anyway?

Let’s break it down: Grains are seeds. Rice, wheat, and corn are some of the most common grains in the world and are known as cereals. Non-grass plants produce seeds referred to as pseudocereals, which are grains such as amaranth, buckwheat, and quinoa.

Whole grains are made up of three parts:

  • Bran – This is the hard outer shell where the antioxidants, fiber, and minerals are located.
  • Endosperm – This is the middle layer, where you find the carbohydrates.
  • Germ – This is the inner layer, where the plant compounds, protein, vitamins, and minerals reside.

For a grain to be considered a whole grain, these three parts need to be present. They can be cracked, rolled, or crushed, but just not missing any of these important parts to remain whole.

Refined grains are missing the germ and the bran, leaving only the endosperm behind, which means it’s carb city without all the other benefits!

Whole grains you should be on the lookout for include:

  • Popcorn
  • Quinoa
  • Brown rice
  • Millet
  • Oatmeal
  • Whole rye
  • Wheat berries
  • Buckwheat
  • Bulgur
  • Barley
  • Sorghum
  • Freekah

If you can find products with these whole grains in them, then you’re on the right track.

The Health Benefits of Whole Grains

Whole grains should not be skipped over in a healthy diet because:

  • They’re full of fiber and nutrients – Whole grains have B vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, protein, fiber, and important plant compounds that can help to prevent disease.
  • They lower your risk of heart disease – Heart disease is a the leading killer of men and women in the United States, and a diet rich in whole grains can help to lower your risk.
  • They lower your risk of stroke – The fiber, antioxidants, and Vitamin K in whole grains can help to lower your risk of stroke.
  • They can help you maintain a healthy weight – You will eat less overall and feel fuller longer when you eat whole grains, contributing to a healthier weight.

To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic.

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