Tips & Info

What is a whole grain?

From Sound Dietitians, a partner of the Verdant Health Commission. View the complete blog post and recipes from Sound Dietitians at www.sounddietitians.com/sd-blog/whole-grains-month.

 

​A whole grain contains the bran, germ, and endosperm of the grain.

  • Bran (outer layer of the grain) = antioxidants, B vitamins, minerals, protein, fiber!
  • Endosperm (largest part of grain) = carbohydrates, protein, vitamins, minerals
  • Germ (smallest part of grain) = B vitamins, protein, minerals, healthy fats

When a grain is processed, or refined, at least one of these components (usually both the bran and the germ) is removed from the grain. Examples of refined grains are white rice, white flour, and white pasta.

​Grains also contain a husk, which is the very outer protective layer. This is typically removed in all grains because it is so tough, but (fun fact!) is sometimes used in fiber supplements.

Why Choose Whole Grains?

​One of the many reasons why whole grains are a smart choice is that they contain FIBER! Fiber is a nutrient that:

  • helps make us feel full (and make that full feeling last)
  • lowers cholesterol (good for your heart!)
  • helps control blood sugar levels
  • keeps things moving (helps prevent constipation and helps keep your gut healthy)
  • aids in weight control and weight loss

 

View the rest of the blog post from Sound Dietitians for more information, photos and details about various whole grains, and an Italian Farro and Vegetable Salad: www.sounddietitians.com/sd-blog/whole-grains-month