Whole grains have a beneficial effect on several chronic diseases. Evidence from research work shows that including dietary whole grains help in the prevention of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and colorectal, pancreatic, and gastric cancers. It was suggested after reviewing several research studies that the consumption of 2 to 3 servings per day (~45 gm) of whole grains may be beneficial.
Whole grain constituents which have a beneficial effect on health
The constituents in whole grains that may have a protective effect on health include
- Resistant starch
- Antioxidants (trace minerals, phenolic compounds, and phytoestrogens which exhibit potential hormonal effects).
Tips on how to incorporate whole grains into your regular diet
- In pesarattu or moong chilla use pesarlu or whole moong instead of mung dal.
- Buy whole wheat bread or multi-grain bread and not white bread or brown bread. Some times brown bread is brown just because of the caramelized sugar added.
- Stop using maida or refined flour use only whole wheat flour.
- In whole wheat flour used for rotis or parathas add other whole grains such as soybeans or chickpeas.
- Start using oats, you can have oatmeal with milk for breakfast.
- Start using brown rice instead of white rice.
- In dosas instead of white rice add brown rice for the batter.
- Use rajma, chole, brown chana regularly instead of dal. This will be a better option than just dal. Why not make dal makhani because it has whole urad or whole black gram. Make sundal with boiled kabuli chana.
- Quinoa is easy to use try to incorporate this pseudocereal in your diet.
- Buy bran enriched muffins and other baked products instead of the ones made from refined flour.
- Start using sprouts in your salads and as your snack.
- Add boiled whole legumes to your salads.
- Start using millets regularly in your diet. Make jowar(sorghum) rotis, korrala (foxtail millet) khichidi, ragi dosa or ragi java and so on. There are several recipes which can be made from millets and millet fours.
- Replace maida with whole wheat flour to make shakkar para and namak para type of snacks.
There are several recipes in which whole wheat flour or whole grains or millets can replace refined flour or white rice. We just have to think a little and use our imagination we can find an array of recipes in which whole grains and whole grain flour can be incorporated.
Whole grains have fiber which is good for our gut health. The dietary fiber is food for the microflora that resides in our intestine. There are more micronutrients that is more vitamins and minerals in whole grains.
Whole grains because of the fiber content
- Helps manage blood glucose levels in people with diabetes
- Helps manage dyslipidemia and in turn heart issues
- Prevents constipation
- Helps in weight management
- Improves gut health
Add whole grains to your diet because of all the health benefits they provide.