7The Importance of Nutrition |
• Top frozen yogurt with fresh berries.
• Pack a piece of fresh fruit or a baggie of sliced vegetables for a snack
any time of the day.
• Have a vegetarian main dish once or twice a week.
In addition to fruits and vegetables, whole grains are important for maintain-
ing health. Whole grains include brown rice, whole grain pasta, barley, spelt,
oatmeal, whole wheat flour (red wheat), cornmeal, white whole wheat flour,
whole wheat couscous, whole grain cereals, quinoa, millet, and bulgur. As
preschoolers, children can learn to enjoy whole grains. These habits and taste
preferences will help them sustain healthy eating patterns as they mature and
become adults. The advice to “make half your grains whole” is the minimum
recommendation. It’s desirable to make even more of
your grain choices whole grains.
Whole grains are a more complete source of
nutrition than their processed cousins. Whole
grains contain more vitamins, minerals, and dietary
fiber than processed grains, such as bleached or
unbleached all-purpose flour, white rice, and white
pasta. In processed grains, the bran and germ have
been removed by polishing. These nutritional com-
ponents are then sold separately in forms like wheat
germ and bran cereal. Although some of the vita-
mins and minerals that have been removed by refin-
ing grains are added back when flour is enriched, the
majority of these important nutrients are lost when
grains are processed. An easy way to add whole
grains to your diet is to substitute them for the processed grains you are
already eating. People who have adjusted to a change to whole grains usually
report that they enjoy the nutty flavor and chewier texture of whole grains
and find the refined grain foods they used to eat bland and lacking in flavor.
Here are some ways to substitute whole grains for processed grains in
• Use brown rice, quinoa, spelt, or wheat berries instead of white rice.
• Choose a whole grain cereal, such as oatmeal, over a processed grain
• Select stone-ground whole wheat bread over white bread.
hOWcan WhiTe flOur be WhOle
white whole wheat flour is made from a strain
of wheat with less pigmentation in the bran than
traditional whole wheat flour has . Because it is the
pigments that give whole wheat flour the stronger
flavor that some people object to, foods made with
white whole wheat have a milder flavor as well as
a lighter color . Baked goods also have a lighter
texture when made with white whole wheat flour
compared to those made with traditional whole
wheat flour . white whole wheat flour is still made
from the whole grain and contains all of the nutri-
tion associated with whole wheat flour, making it a
great choice for baking .
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