Labels can be tricky. Bread labeled as “wheat” sounds like a good option, right? The thing is, a lot of the wheat bread on the market isn’t much better than a loaf of white bread.
Need a little help knowing if you’re buying the right bread for you and your family? A great start is to look for the label to read “100% Whole Wheat” or “Whole Grain” instead of just “Wheat.”
Then see if the product has a whole grain stamp on the package. If not, at least look for the product to have defined the number of whole grain grams per serving. If the loaf of bread lacks whole grain completely, you could make a better choice.
Are you a stickler for white bread to sandwich your peanut butter and jelly? In the very least look for the white bread that has some whole grain in it. White breads are available that have some whole grain, about half of what many 100% whole wheat options offer. It’s better than none at all.
Why choose whole grain?
First off, whole grain has been linked to reducing the risk of chronic disease. That alone should be encouraging. As you can see in the label here, the daily goal is to consume at least 48 grams of whole grain per day. Eating from a loaf of bread like the one shown here delivers 38 grams of whole grain with a couple slices of toast for breakfast or sandwich at lunch. That’s great!
As a runner, whole grain is important in delivering satisfying energy. Whole grain helps the body respond to inflammation. It’s a source of B vitamins which support metabolism as well as muscle repair and recovery. It’s a source of the mineral iron, which is important for oxygen transport. The list could go on.
Choose whole grain often!