Understanding the difference between refined and whole grains can be confusing to some. Whether it is weight loss, stabilizing blood sugar levels or just staying healthy, knowing the contrast between the two is of greatest significance because it will help you achieve the goals you have set for yourself.
Cookies, loaves of bread, boxes of cereals, flours, and pasta are some of the foods in the grocery that contain grains in them. Getting the healthier version of these types of foods can be daunting to some, especially to those who are unfamiliar with if it is indeed a whole-grain version or just its refined counterpart.
To help you better understand what whole grains are and how to identify whole grain products, WholeGrainsCouncil.Org have created a stamp which aids busy shoppers like us, determine if the foods in our grocery carts are 100% whole grain merchandises.
There are three varieties of a Whole Grain Stamp: the 100% stamp, the 50%+ stamp, and the Basic Stamp.
- If a product bears the 100% Stamp, its grain ingredients are whole grain.
- If a product bears the 50%+ Stamp, at least half of its grain ingredients are whole grain.
- If the product bears the Basic Stamp, it contains at least 8 grams, a half serving, of whole grain, but may also contain some refined grain.
Some of the things I include in my grocery-shopping list that are 100% Whole Grains are:
- Buckwheat Crackers – These crackers from Le Pain des Fleurs are 100% Organic, Gluten-Free, Low Fat, Cholesterol- Free, Low Sodium, Kosher, and GMO-Free. They also make quinoa, and other types of crackers depending on your preference.
- Ezekiel Sprouted Grain Pasta – Opting out of white pasta, Ezekiel Sprouted Grain Pasta is my choice of pasta because it is 100% whole grain, yeast free, high in fiber, vegan and diabetic friendly, non-GMO and plant protein. For this type of pasta, you do not need to eat a lot because you get full much faster. It is high in fiber, low in sodium and is complete protein pasta. The ingredients are Organic Sprouted Whole Grain Wheat, Organic Sprouted Whole Grain Barley, Organic Sprouted Whole Grain Millet, Organic Sprouted Whole Lentils, Organic Sprouted Whole Soybeans, Organic Sprouted Whole Grain Spelt.
- GoGo Quinoa – Organic White Royal Quinoa is an organic, gluten/wheat-free, vegan, cholesterol-free, Kosher, and non-GMO product that is an excellent source of plant-based protein, iron, and fiber. Rinse until water is translucent. It is perfect for those on the go because it can be cooked in 15 minutes and can be eaten either hot or cold with your chosen fruits and vegetables.
- Nature’s Path Mesa Sunrise Cereal – Instead of the usual refined cereals filled with sugar, I sometimes eat Nature’s Path Mesa Sunrise Cereal combined with almond milk and berries because it is certified organic, gluten-free, and has ingredients including corn meal, flax seeds, and buckwheat flour.
- Ezekiel Sesame Sprouted Whole Grain Bread – For a healthier bread option, go for this because it is high in fiber, vegan, non-GMO and a great source of plant protein.
To not waste your effort in trying to live a healthier life, switch from refined grains to whole grains because they have been processed to extend their shelf life, with reduced essential nutrients that your body needs.