Have you been encouraged to stop eating carbohydrates? Do you think it will help you lose weight or worse, have you been convinced that carbohydrates, especially grains are bad for you? It is a shame that such misinformation circulates and so many people are confused about this important food group but it just shows that we need to apply some common sense before we remove foods groups from our diet.
A while back I decided to jump on the Keto Train. EVERYONE was talking about it. Now before I go any further, my body works so much better with fat, not a fat free diet. As well, I don't do too well with added sugar, but who really does?!?
Anywhooo, I decided I'll do keto! I had added alot of fat back in my lifestyle, cut out processed sugar (except for a donut here and there - Yup my weakness) and dropped my carbs, TO LESS THAN 20 NET CARBS A DAY!
You read that right! It was great! I had loads of energy, lost a couple of lbs (nothing to write home about) and I was living on bacon basically.
Then the whole ass fell out of it. I literally crashed. I was exhausted, my monthly visitor was out of whack which meant my hormones were cra-cra, AND when I did have my period I was in excruciating pain. Plus my sleep went to crap and I was, let me say, a bit moody (ok I was truly a mad monster)
So I slowly added back carbs, but good ones, like whole grains, (not the white processed shit), natural sweetners, like raw honey and maple syrup, fruit (I went almost a year with very little fruit because of carb content) and I added in bread. YES BREAD!
I grew up eating toast atleast twice a day. So I missed the stuff. But this time I used whole grain breads.
BUT my favorite bread??
But what if you have a digestion issue with grains, does that mean for sure, you should avoid them?
Before you remove anything, try sourdough. What is sourdough?
A traditional method of fermenting grains to make bread. It has many benefits and is much more digestible.
Fermenting grains creates prebiotic substances from the starches in the flour to aid gut health so sourdough is a great food for feeding the good bacteria.
This is sourdough made with white flour as that is what they do the research with.
The fermentation process also makes nutrients more available, as it does with all fermented foods. However, the process of sourdough also adds B-vitamins that were not there before the fermentation occurred.
This makes sense since sourdough is a combination of good bacteria and yeast, 100 times more good bacteria than yeast as it happens, but wild yeast strains are definitely present since this is what makes the bread rise to give it an amazing, light-texture. And yeast is a great source of B-vitamins.
The acid nature, the “sour” of sourdough, aids in pre-digestion of the protein molecules in the grain especially the gliadin in gluten, as protease enzymes prefer an acid pH for optimal function. As a matter of fact, researchers are studying sourdough for consumption by celiacs.
The gluten must be completely degraded in order for a celiac to tolerate it, and this would make it quite sour tasting. Some experiments involved using fully-degraded sourdough mixed with fresh gluten-free grains added after fermentation to lessen the sour taste and these breads were also suitable for celiacs.
But probably the most amazing research comes from the University of Guelph. Researchers took four samples of bread: regular white flour bread, whole wheat bread, whole wheat with barley bread and white flour sourdough bread. The participants in this study were all between the ages of 50 to 60 and were all overweight. They were fed the breads at breakfast and then again at lunch.
After both meals, blood sugar and insulin levels were measured. The sourdough provided the lowest level of blood sugar and insulin, and surprisingly, continued to keep the blood and insulin levels low for the following meal where no bread was consumed.
The whole wheat, on the other hand, provided the highest level of blood sugar after a meal, even higher than the regular white flour bread.
If you want to try sourdough, look for bakers in your area who are making traditional sourdough bread. This is a delicious adventure for you take. A quick google search of “sourdough” and the name of the city or town where you live could make it easier to find someone local. I get mine at COBBS Bakery.
And if you cannot find a source in your area, you can order it online and have it shipped to you.
When you do find a source, cut yourself a slice, drizzle it with some virgin olive oil or cultured butter. Enjoy!
Certified Holistic Nutrition and Wellbeing Counselor