There is a lot of information flying around out there about bread these days. Some people love it, others will only eat specific kinds, and other people seem to have sworn bread off altogether. No matter what your opinion of the food is, there are some unexpected facts about bread that you probably haven't heard yet. And if you don't know what exactly to make of this seemingly hot-buttoned food, then this list may be even more relevant to clear up all the confusion. Should you ignore what everyone else is saying, or swear it off as the enemy? Don't worry — there are answers out there, and some of them might surprise you.
First and foremost, you should eat what you want, when you want it. Only you can decide what is or isn't right for you when it comes to what goes into your body. If you're into knowing exactly what you're eating and how it can affect your body (no matter what you choose to do with that information), though, it can be especially hard to discern bread fact from fiction.
In the hope of debunking the ever-present mystery around bread, I've compiled the bread basics in one place so that it's easier for you to make informed decisions when it comes to what you want to be eating if that's your goal. Here are five unexpected facts about bread that everyone should know.
1. Many Breads Are Good For You
Our culture can be a little carb-phobic, but according to The Harvard School of Public Health, carbohydrates are an important part of a healthy diet, as they are converted into glucose in our bodies, giving us the energy our bodies need to function. However, it's important to note that the source of the carb is important, with Harvard recommending whole grain breads as one of the best sources, along with veggies, fruits, and beans.
2. Not All Breads Are Created Equal
So with that being said, it's important to know that not all breads are created equal when it comes to nutritional value. According to fitness and nutrition coach Sarah Christie in an article for Mind Body Green, white bread is made from wheat kernels that have had almost all of their nutrients removed, and are essentially processed like candy within our body.
Christie noted that whole grain breads, however, come from flour made from the whole kernel of wheat, and contain much more nutritional value. She also said that there is even sprouted grain bread, which is made from wheat kernels that have already sprouted. "Sprouted grains contain more protein and less fat than other breads," she said, and "sprouted grains are also easier to digest."
3. A Lot Of Whole Grain Breads Are Not 100 Percent Whole Grain
OK, so now you know that whole grain bread is definitely nutritious, but it's important to also note that not all whole grain breads are made from 100 percent whole grains, and some brands actually use non-whole grain, refined flour as filler, according to The Whole Grain Council, an organization that helps consumers understand the benefits of wholegrain foods. The Whole Grain Council says to be sure to look for the 100 percent Whole Grain yellow label, and not just the basic yellow stamp if you are trying to incorporate 100 percent whole grains into your routine.
4. Most Breads Contain A Lot Of Sodium
According to Time, breads and rolls are the number one source of sodium in most American's diets, with salty snacks coming in all the way at number 10. If monitoring your sodium intake is a priority for you, be sure to check the food labels on your bread to make sure it's not a major hidden source of salt in your diet.
5. Just Because It's Brown Bread Does Not Mean It's Better For You
Many of us associate brown bread with whole wheat or a "healthier" option, but according to Health, some brands just add caramel coloring to make their bread look darker. Make sure to really check the ingredients of the bread you buy to make sure it really is the healthier option if that's part of your nutrition plan.
Bread doesn't have to be the big scary monster under your bed when it comes to trying to eat healthily. Just remember to always read labels if your goal is to eat 100 percent whole grain, and not to be taken in by seemingly "healthy" colors or packaging. The power is with you!