Swap Your White Bread for Brown!

We frequently talk about the importance of making small changes in your life. The wonderful thing about little changes is that they are achievable. Making giant leaps is hard! Deciding to become a vegetarian overnight, committing to running every day or making another profound sweeping change can backfire. Many of us find those changes way too hard to stick to. But little changes add up. A swap here, a new habit there, and you can find yourself living a healthier life without as much of a difficult change!

Today we are looking at a pretty easy swap. Switching out your white bread for brown is a heart-healthy choice that won’t cause upset in your life. It’s true that you will notice the change. White bread is softer, and the taste is different. But, once you find the right brown bread for you, you will be thrilled with your choice!

Brown bread varieties can be packed full of fiber! Which makes them an excellent, heart-healthy choice. White bread is made from flour that lacks the fibrous bran and nutritious germ of the wheat. That refined fiber is starchy and can cause blood spikes without the fiber. Many baking companies add nutrition back into the flour, but, as a base ingredient, it’s had its benefits stripped away. Flour with the germ and bran has fiber, vitamins, protein and minerals. The fiber in brown bread can help you feel full, the protein can help your muscles and all of the vitamins and minerals can boost your immune system.

White bread is also more likely to contain things you don’t want to eat. You should always look at labels while buying food. Brown bread can have added things too. But, white bread is very likely to have bleaching elements. If you are somebody who likes to be able to pronounce everything in their food, brown bread is most likely what you want to reach for. White flour is often bleached using benzoyl peroxide, chlorine dioxide gas or potassium bromate. None of them are dangerous in small quantities but are harmful in large amounts. When you’re reading the label for brown bread, look for “whole wheat” or “whole meal” the word “enriched” can mean additives that you don’t want either. When it comes to bread, you really want a label with as few ingredients as possible!

There are so many types of brown bread to choose from! Dozens are in the store! Oat breads, rye breads, flax breads, whole wheat breads, and brown sourdoughs are just a few. They all have their own benefits and taste profiles. It’s really up to your preference what you go for! The basic rules to follow are that you pick a bread that is 100 percent whole-grain, has 3-5 grams of fiber and 3-6 grams of protein per slice and has no added sugars. After that, pick what sounds good!

This one swap can add fiber, protein and extra vitamins and nutrients to your day without making you feel like you’ve sacrificed something. It’s a great way to help your heart without making a herculean effort!

Banner image: Bon Vivant via Unsplash
February 17, 2021

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