Updated: Jan 17
If you’re someone who relies on your crops for your livelihood or if you’re someone who relies on the food at the grocery store, it might be worth knowing which grains are actually beneficial to human health.
It turns out there are some different types of grains that offer specific benefits.
There are whole grains, which are basically grains that have been stripped of the outer layer. Also known as “whole grain,” these include wheat, rye, corn and some types of rice.
Then there are refined grains such as white rice, white flour and pure cane sugar. They’re basically just the removed outer sections of grains like wheat or corn that have been processed to be made into cereals or starches for a wide variety of foods (white pasta is pretty close to pure refined sugar!).
It is widely known that fruit and vegetables have high concentrations of disease-ﬁghting phytochemicals and antioxidants. However, many people do not realize how much more nutritious grains are! They have a lot of the same antioxidant power as fruits and vegetables, but also contain B vitamins, vitamin E, magnesium, iron and ﬁber.
Whole grains can be an important part of a healthy diet. Research shows that people who eat more whole grains are less likely to develop heart disease, diabetes and cancer. They have lower rates of obesity, high blood pressure and high cholesterol than their peers who do not eat whole grains.
There is no doubt that phytochemicals, antioxidants and other nutrients found in fruits and vegetables are essential to good health. However, some nutrients found in whole grains are not found in fruits or vegetables.
The medical evidence is clear that whole grains offer a diverse range of health benefits including:
— Promote better blood sugar control for people with diabetes
— Help lower cholesterol and blood pressure
— Help prevent memory loss and heart disease in aging
— Promote better sleep
— Help control weight, because they make you feel full
— Help reduce the effects of certain inflammatory diseases, such as asthma
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