Is Bread Evil or Actually Good for Us?
Bread has been eaten and enjoyed for centuries and back then, a digestive illness like IBS, Crohn's disease and IBD were unheard of.
The type of bread they consumed was very different from the bread we eat today in this modern world.
Modern wheat and modern bread, for the most part, is a far cry from the bread eaten in ancient times. Since then, wheat has been modernised so it could be produced more quickly and easily.
This modernisation (and bastardisation) has changed the nature of the wheat into something that many people now find hard to digest. The changes to wheat are also contributing to many digestive issues and inflammation.
So that is modern wheat and if you are choosing to buy loaves of mainstream brands from supermarket shelves or even most bakeries, you are getting this modern wheat (plus a tonne of other chemicals thrown into the mix for good measure).
Is it any wonder so many of us are suffering?
This is not about bread but about wheat so we are still on topic.
Just the other day I succumbed to a sausage roll from a popular franchise bakery inside a shopping centre as I went to grab a few things from Woolies (I rarely eat this type of thing) and later on, boy did I pay the price!
I had horrible pain in my belly and I was bloated and looked 6 months pregnant, no joke!
Now, I learned a valuable lesson that day and it was a painful reminder that these types of foods should be avoided, not just because the pastry is made with modern wheat but probably contains a whole bunch of other nasties that don't leave a gut feeling happy. And not to mention, the ingredients of the "sausage" mince!
We live and we learn and we keep moving forward.
Not All Bread is Evil Though
If you aren't gluten-intolerant, you may still be able to eat and enjoy bread, you just gotta be careful of the source and how it's produced...
Good bread is out there but it's unlikely you will find it on the supermarket shelves (unless they are very progressive?).
Sourdough bread may be healthier for your gut because it goes through a fermentation process and this process helps reduce phytic acid (an anti-nutrient that can affect nutrient absorption). This type of bread can be much easier to digest because it contains prebiotics as well as probiotics and therefore, eating this type of bread can have positive effects on gut health.
When choosing a sourdough, try to find one that is either organic or it is wholemeal or stoneground (ideally organic so you avoid the damaging health effects of glyphosate - a popular herbicide used on most crops).
Oat bread is often not wheat-free so if you're gluten intolerant, this type of bread may not be for you. Typically, it contains oats, wholegrain flour, yeast, water and salt.
This common grain can be a good source of insoluble fibre that's been shown to lower bad cholesterol, regulate blood sugar and help decrease high blood pressure.
Be sure to choose an oat bread where oats are the main ingredient and there are no nasty additives etc..
You can buy paleo bread but you can also (very easily I might add) make your own, all you need is a loaf tin and a few ingredients. Paleo bread often contains almond meal, eggs and coconut oil. This bread is completely wheat and gluten-free!
You can find other bread out there but availability will often come down to where you live and what is actually available. There are flax bread, sprouted bread like Ezekiel, Rye bread, Pumpernickel and more.
Again though, it's always important to read the ingredients and not just assume it is healthy. I have often been caught out in the past by this assumption!
I hope you enjoyed today's blog and please share it with your friends, family and colleagues.
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