March is National Nutrition month. Each week we have been sharing simple tips to help you make smart food choices, which leads to a healthier you. Adding whole grains is one simple thing that you can add to your family's diet, and the dividends will be delicious and beneficial.
EatRight.org shares the following tip on adding whole grains to your diet;
How to Find Whole Grains
Remember, being brown doesn't make bread whole wheat and being white may not mean that bread is made with just refined white flour. Finding whole-grain breads takes some label reading skills. Any bread labeled "whole wheat" must be made with 100-percent whole-wheat flour.
Also, did you know that even if bread labels advertise "seven-grain" or "multigrain," they are not necessarily whole-grain products? Check the Nutrition Facts panel to make sure whole-wheat flour is listed as the first ingredient and find loaves made mostly with whole-wheat or other whole-grain flour.
Add Whole Grains to Your Meals
Want to add more whole grains to your meals? Change your cooking style to include more whole grains and boost the fiber content of meals. Partner whole grains — brown rice and vegetable stir-fry or a whole-wheat pita stuffed with salad. Fortify mixed dishes with high-fiber ingredients — try adding bran or oatmeal to meat loaf.
Looking for other ways to make half your family's grains whole?
- Start with breakfast. Choose a fiber-rich, whole-grain breakfast cereal, oatmeal or toast. Check the grams of fiber per serving; more fiber will keep you feeling fuller, longer.
- Choose whole grains over refined items when selecting breads, buns, bagels, tortillas, pastas and other grains.
- Experiment with different grains such as buckwheat, bulgur, millet, quinoa, sorghum, whole rye or barley. To save time, cook extra bulgur or barley and freeze half to heat and serve later as a quick side dish.
- Enjoy whole grains as a snack. Three cups of whole-grain, air-popped popcorn contains 3.5 grams of fiber and only 95 calories. Also, try 100-percent whole-wheat or rye crackers.
Join us in the challenge of making better food choices this month. A few good choices really add up in the overall picture. A healthy mouth begins with healthy food intake. We know you can do it!
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