Health benefits of grains
Over the years, kitchen recipes acquainted the world with variegated food staples, like corn, oats, rice, and wheat. Each of these takes pride in its distinct grind, taste, and texture.
Irrespective of the prominence of these edibles, some people still don’t have a clear idea of the genome and the beneficial impact they carry. For starters, these grubs belong to the family of grain-producing crops called grains.
Grains are the tiny eatable seeds of grain-producing crop variations. Most often, they are familiar to many of us as whole grains. Commercially, there are two types of crops in the grains family, and they are legumes and cereals.
One of the two classifications of whole grains seeds is the cereal that came out from our personal favorites, corn, oats, rice, and wheat. More than the delightful treats that grains offer, they are also propitious to our health.
What are whole grains?
Whole grains are the seeds of grain-producing crops that include the nutrients-filled outer shell (barn), inner (middle) section (endosperm), and the food core (germ) inside of the granules. They fall under two classifications, which we listed below.
Whole grains are grains that contain all three parts of the grain: the bran, germ, and endosperm. Examples of whole grains include barley, quinoa, oats, brown rice, and whole wheat. These grains are considered more nutritious than refined grains, which have had the bran and germ removed. Whole grains are a good source of fiber, vitamins, and minerals and they may help lower the risk of heart disease and other chronic health conditions.
Cereals (True Cereals)
This popular item in the cookery is the first group of whole grains. These are the cereals that came from the grasses of wheat, sorghum, rice, rye, oats, millet, corn, barley, and others.
Pseudocereals (Non-Grass Cereals)
The second one is the pseudocereals. Unlike cereals, they do not come from the grasses of food grains. A few examples of pseudocereals are buckwheat, breadnut, wattleseed, quinoa, cockscomb, and amaranth.
Nonetheless, both groups are popular in food preparations. Cooking enthusiasts use and prepare both cereal groups in the same way. Similarly, food lovers consumed them the same.
In general, most people frequently used the following common whole grains in preparing food. They create a variance of each of the food grains in almost every meal, especially for those who are on a strict diet plan.
Usually, we mix it with other ingredients to create a sumptuous recipe. With that said, we list down below some of the popular food recipes or preparations that we commonly make out of these whole grains.
- Brown rice
- Whole wheat bread
- Whole-grain barley
- White rice
- Whole rye
- Wild rice
There are plenty of products of whole grains available in the market now that are ready to eat or easy to prepare and mix with your favorite recipe. However, refined grains are also available.
If you want to get the nutritional benefits of natural whole grains, then look for organic ones. You can read the label to make sure you got the right one.
Whole grains offer a variety of health benefits. Whole grains are a good source of dietary fiber, which helps promote regular bowel movements and may reduce the risk of constipation.
Whole grains have been shown to lower cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease. Whole grains can help regulate blood sugar levels, making them a good choice for people with diabetes or at risk for diabetes.
It can help with weight management as they tend to be more filling than refined grains and may reduce overall calorie intake. Some studies have suggested that a diet rich in whole grains may reduce the risk of certain types of cancer, such as colorectal cancer.
Whole grains are also a good source of several essential nutrients, including B vitamins, vitamin E, iron, zinc, magnesium, and antioxidants.
It is important to note that while whole grains are healthy, they should be consumed in moderation, as they are also calorie dense. Eating a balanced diet, with a variety of whole grains, fruits and vegetables, and healthy fats and proteins, is the best way to ensure optimal health.
Whole grains contain lots of fiber and other nutrients that are beneficial to our health and total well-being. The highly recommended daily fiber intake that every adult should consume is from or between twenty-five to thirty-five grams.
Fortunately, whole grains can provide you with that. Here are the health benefits that you can take away with whole grains in your diet.
Keeping us full
One significant characteristic of whole grains is the ability to keep us full. They make us feel full, so, we don’t crave to eat more than the desired amount. That said, whole grains helped us in keeping our food portions manageable or under control.
Maintain our weight
These fiber-filled whole grains aren’t only delightful to our taste buds, but they are also perfect for maintaining our weight. Most individuals who added whole grains to their favorite food recipes showed remarkable weight control. Fitness enthusiasts also created different preparations of whole grains to go with their workout routines, and in the process, also displayed incredible results in weight loss.
Preserving our digestive system healthy
Fiber, itself, is a powerful aid that helps in keeping our stomach clean as they help in regulating our bowel movements effectively. It flushes toxins out from our digestive system and cleans everything inside entirely. Thus, preventing any form of stomach-related troubles or diseases, such as diverticulosis.
Lactic acid is also present in whole grains. It is a good bacteria that boosts the digestive system’s overall function, especially the large intestine. It aids our digestion process, thus, promoting better absorption of nutrients into our body system.
Helps in reducing our belly fat
Among the significant beneficial impacts of adding whole grains to our diet is that it helps in reducing our belly fat. They come with essential properties that help in the redistribution process of fats in our bodies. In doing so, they aid in eliminating excess fats in our bellies. Therefore, preventing central adiposity, which is a term used when fats get accumulated in our lower torso in our abdominal area that causes the belly fats, to happen.
Can lower our cholesterol
Whole grains also offer an essential property that prohibits the body from absorption of bad cholesterol while allowing good cholesterol. Aside from that, they also have the ability to lower the level of triglycerides, the culprit of heart diseases.
Regulate our blood sugar
Due to the properties of whole grains to ward off toxins and keep us full, they also help in keeping the regulation of our blood sugar. When we feel full, we don’t feel the urge to eat more, thus, keeping our weight on the right track.
Furthermore, avoiding the build-up of excess fats, and so, preventing any spike in our glucose that can lead to diabetes.
Aid in lowering our blood pressure
Apart from blocking bad cholesterol and lowering the cause of heart disease, whole grains can also aid in lowering our blood pressure. High blood pressure can trigger stroke and other illnesses related to the cardiovascular system, which whole grains can help prevent.
Support our immune system
Whole grains also contain other essential nutrients that can keep our overall body functioning effectively and healthy. They come with large amounts of calcium, protein, and vitamin C. Hence, supporting our immune system. With this, they are giving us a whole level of protection.
Protect our gums
Health experts recently discovered that people who consumed a huge amount of whole grains resulted in healthy gums, as they support us with a healthy immune system and total protection.
In protecting our gums, they also help protect our teeth and keep them stronger. Besides whole grains, you should also drop by the dentist often for check-ups; for a good recommendation, head over to Orlando Cosmetic dentistry.
Prevent cancer and other illnesses
Consuming whole grains will not only benefit us physically but as well as our whole health. Whole grains keep everything in order from our food intake to the absorption of only good cholesterol.
That and all, coupled with the various nutrients that they contain, whole grains also help in cancer prevention and other illnesses, such as asthma, liver disease, and kidney problems, among many others.
When we are eating the right amount of nutrient-filled food that our body essentially needs, then we are keeping our overall well-being healthy.
Risk/side effects (Disadvantages of whole grain)
Unquestionably, whole grains are rich in essential nutrients beneficially impactful our health. However, not everyone gets to enjoy these healthy seeds, and like any other food, there are also some disadvantages, risks, or side effects that whole grains pose.
For that reason, we are giving some of them to you to provide valuable information that you need to know about whole grains.
This may lead to overeating
Some people have misconceptions about the idea of fiber. With this, they have tendencies to eat more, thinking that it is okay because it’s filled with fiber and other essential nutrients. It is then that the problem occurs. Numerous studies resulted in shown that some people lead to eating more than the required serving.
So, instead of losing weight, they are gaining weight to the point of getting overweight or obese. Eating refined grains, as some people sometimes get mistaken for whole grains, can create more health problems related to metabolism. Thus, the misconception may result in blood-related diseases, like diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart illnesses.
Allergic reaction to gluten
Some whole grains contain gluten, and people who are allergic to gluten or have underlying diseases, like celiac may result in negative side effects, and risks of health complications. Allergic reactions may include joint pain and fatigue.
Bowel movement or stomach distress
People with a sensitive digestive system or those individuals who have other digestive system diseases may have negative reactions to whole grains. Some of the symptoms may include indigestion, constipation, or diarrhea.
Risks of diabetes
Whole grains are also rich in carbohydrates, which are not ideal for people with diabetes. So, overeating or an incorrect amount of serving may result in an increase in glucose, and thus, might result in diabetes.
Nutritional Information/Nutrition Facts
Whole grains contain many variable nutrients that are essential in our bodies. Generally, they provide dietary fiber, calories, potassium, calcium, protein, iron, vitamin C, magnesium, and vitamin B-6, among many others. Here is a list of the nutritional facts for a ¼ cup of common dry whole grains.
For ¼ cup of long-grain brown rice, there’s a total of 171 calories, 1.25 grams of total fat, 0.25-gram of saturated fat, 3.25 grams of sodium, 35.75 grams of carbohydrates, 1.5 grams of dietary fiber, and 3.75 grams of protein. Brown rice has zero percent of gluten and cholesterol.
Oats contain gluten and zero cholesterol. For ¼ cup of oats, it contains a total of 152 grams of calories, 2.75 grams of total fat, 0.5-gram of saturated fat, 0.75-gram of sodium, 25.75 grams of carbohydrates, 4.25 grams of dietary fiber, 6.5 grams of protein.
With a ¼ cup of Quinoa dry whole grains, you will get 159 grams of calories, 2.5 grams of total fat, 0.25 grams of saturated fat, 9 grams of sodium, 25.95 grams of carbohydrates, 2.5 grams of dietary fiber, and 5.5 grams of protein. It doesn’t have gluten content and zero percent cholesterol.
A ¼ cup of sorghum has no gluten or cholesterol content. It has 163 grams of calories, 1.5 grams of total fats, 0.25 grams of saturated fat, 3 grams of sodium, 33.75 grams of carbohydrates, 3 grams of dietary fiber, and 5.5 grams of protein.
Wild rice includes no gluten and cholesterol, 143 grams of calories, 0.5 grams of total fats, 0 grams of saturated fat, 2.75 grams of sodium, 30 grams of carbohydrates, 2.5 grams of dietary fiber, and 6 grams of protein.
The daily recommended intake of whole grains is 48 grams for adults and 30 to 40 grams for children from three to eight years old.
Easy Ways to Get More Whole Grains into Your Diet
There are a lot of easy ways that you can get more whole grains into your favorite food preparations. You can incorporate them with other recipes on your diet.
- You can replace your usual all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour to create your favorite baking recipes.
- Instead of eating white rice, you can try brown rice.
- Whenever you want to eat popcorn, get it from an air-popped one.
- You can also add barley to your favorite soups.
- You can also use quinoa for your rice.
- Play around with your daily porridges. You can mix whole grains in making your porridge. You may have oatmeal or bulgur.
- For your favorite taco recipes, you may use stone-ground corn tortillas instead of white.
- You can also add a mixture of whole grains to your salad.
You can always mix and match whole grains into your favorite diet plan. There are so many recipes that you can create where you can incorporate these healthy dry grains. You can also get an idea online or on the food network. They have plenty of recipes to share.
Are grains necessary for good health?
Yes, whole grains contain plenty of nutrients that are beneficial for your health. They are high in dietary fiber. They are ideal for maintaining your weight, or when you try to lose weight.
Whole grains can make you feel full. So, they will limit your food intake accordingly. Thus, keeping your weight on the right track.
Are all grains inflammatory?
No. Whole grains have anti-inflammatory substances that aid in keeping our immune system healthy. They can remove toxins from our bodies. By doing that, whole grains enable effective functions of the body. However, refined grains can cause inflammation.
Do grains give you energy?
Grains provide our body with energy. They are rich in carbohydrates that are a great source of energy in the body. Conversely, whole grains can keep our energy consistent, and at the same time, they also help in the proper regulation of our blood sugar.
Undeniably, whole grains aren’t only a delectable addition to your diet but as well as to your overall health and well-being. They are nutrient-filled eatable seeds that you can get sustainable and substantial health benefits.
You can always mix and match different whole grains to your favorite food preparations or recipes.