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Refined Grains: How Food Affects Health

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Refined grains lack the essential nutrients and fiber that whole-grain counterparts have. Take advantage of the healthy parts – opt for whole grains!

White rice white bread, white rice white pasta, regular white pasta, and many other food items are made using white flour (also known as refined wheat flour and all-purpose flour) and include numerous cakes, cookie crackers, breakfast cereals, and snacks.

Whole grains comprise three distinct parts consisting of the bran (outer layer) and the endosperm (middle layer), and the germ (inner layer). The embryo and the bran contain the highest nutritional elements of the grain. They are rich in fiber, minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants. However, When refining, the germ, and bran are removed from the entire grain. The endosperm portion, the part of the grain left over after refining, mainly comprises starchy carbohydrates and lacks nutrients. Some nutrients, like iron and a variety of B vitamins, are added to refined flours and grains when made (hence the name “enriched wheat flour”); however, they are only a fraction of what was initially taken out of the grain. This is why refined grains don’t offer all the health advantages of whole grains.

The kind of carbs you consume makes a huge difference in how you digest food and the energy you get. Refined grains are digested quickly into simple sugars and absorbed into the bloodstream. It can cause blood sugar levels to increase and rapidly fall. These sudden fluctuations in blood sugar levels can squander your energy levels and leave you exhausted and sluggish. On the other hand, good quality carbohydrates like whole grains are high in fiber, which can help control blood sugars by reducing the process of absorbing sugar into your bloodstream following meals. They also provide an energy source that lasts for a long time that keeps your body fueled for a long time. It’s the reason you should pick high-quality carbs that include whole grains, fruits, vegetables, beans, legumes, and beans rather than low-quality carbohydrates like refined grains whenever you can.

Contrary to diets rich in refined grains. Diets that are rich in whole grains that are nutritious decrease the chances of Type 2 Diabetes and cardiovascular disease as well as hypertension. On the other hand, eating a diet high in refined grains could result in high triglycerides and increase inflammation throughout your body, which could cause arthritis-related symptoms to worsen. They can also hinder losing weight since they’re low in fiber, aren’t as nutritious as whole grains, and are more prone to consume too much.

Regular pasta, white bread, and other items made with “enriched wheat flour” or “all-purpose flour” are wheat-based and thus contain gluten. Therefore, they should not be consumed by people who have celiac disease. All varieties (including healthy whole grain varieties) of rye, wheat, and barley are gluten-free and should be avoided by people with celiac disease. If you have celiac disease, you should go for gluten-free, whole grains, such as brown and wild rice amaranth, buckwheat, quinoa, and whole corn, as well as packaged foods that contain these ingredients (and for an additional measure of security, make sure to read the labels on your food products).

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