What Kind of Bread Should I Eat?

 | Articles, Health, Nutrition  | 20 Comments

bread

Many people choose not to eat bread or any products that contain grains. Some people only want to avoid gluten. Some people just want to avoid carbs. But I would hazard a guess that lots and lots of people have a vague idea that bread and wheat are bad for us but they’re not sure why.

 Gluten, Gluten, Gluten.

What the heck is gluten and why is it apparently evil? Nowadays, people are blaming gluten for everything from digestion issues and inflammation to skin problems and mood disorders. Gluten is a general name for the strands of proteins found in “wheat, rye, barley and triticale – a cross between wheat and rye. Gluten helps foods maintain their shape, acting as a glue that holds food together. Gluten can be found in many types of foods, even ones that would not be expected”.

Some people have a sensitivity or an intolerance for gluten, just like people who are lactose intolerance. However, intolerance is often confused with Celiac Disease. Celiac Disease is an autoimmune disorder that causes the body to attack the small intestine whenever gluten is ingested. These attacks damage the small intestine and make it difficult for the person with Celiac Disease to absorb nutrients. This can lead to tons of serious health problems like anemia, chronic fatigue, brittle bones, digestive disorders, cancer, and even death. To learn more about Celiac Disease (or if you think you might have it), click on this link and check out the Celiac Disease Foundation website.

I Eat Gluten and Feel Fine

 For those of us who can tolerate gluten there then arises another question. Is it ok to eat bread?

If you’re trying to keep a really low carb diet, then it’s probably best to give bread a pass. But let’s say that you’re fine with a small (or larger) amount of grains in your diet. Perhaps you enjoy one or two pieces of toast with your delicious runny-yolked eggs in the morning. Super! But don’t reach for that package of Wonder Bread just yet.

Breads, just like any food, are not all created equal. First of all, bread is a processed food and that makes making the right bread choice more complicated. Whether you’re the one doing the processing (if you bake your own) or the company you’re buying it from does, there’s a lot to consider when you’re choosing your bread.

If you want to make bread, great! That’s a big step. It can be really rewarding to make your own bread form scratch. But please keep in mind that even if you make bread yourself, that doesn’t make the white processed grocery store flour any healthier. Here’s a great recipe for walnut bread from my website. It also happens to be gluten free, if you have Celiac or an intolerance.

If you would prefer to buy bread or want to eat some grains, there’s really only one brand of bread I would recommend; Ezekiel Bread.

Why Ezekiel?

 1. Sprouted Grains. “Sprouting is the natural process that involves seeds germinating and the plant sprouting out of its shell when coming in contact with water. So, when foods like Ezekiel bread are labeled ‘sprouted’, this simply means that this natural process was mimicked, leading to a ton more nutrients and healthful benefits. Sprouted grains and legumes are much lower in gluten, and because the sprouting process breaks down enzyme inhibitors, the bread is, therefore, easier to digest and much more nutrient dense”.

2. No Sugar! Food For Life, the company that makes Ezekiel Bread, says, “We don’t use refined sugars. When sugar is refined and processed there are many harmful ingredients that are added to the sugar as a result. Instead, we use malted barley, a natural sweetener produced from sprouted barley, which is basically a carbohydrate comprised mostly of complex carbohydrates rather than the “sugar” carbohydrates.

3. A Complete, Organic, Meat-Free, Fiber-Full Protein. Ezekiel bread contains zero flour (they don’t grind the grains and legumes that small) and is made up of:

Ingredient List:

Organic Sprouted Wheat, Filtered Water, Organic Sprouted Barley, Organic Sprouted Millet, Organic Malted Barley, Organic Sprouted Lentils, Organic Sprouted Soybeans, Organic Sprouted Spelt, Fresh Yeast, Organic Wheat Gluten, Sea Salt.

This ingredients list makes Ezekiel Bread a complete source of protein that’s similar to the protein found in eggs and milk. Non-animal proteins leave a much smaller carbon footprint. Ezekiel Bread also contains all 9 essential amino acids and some fiber. And we all know that fiber makes us feel fuller longer and places the food containing it lower on the glycemic index.

4. Proven. You don’t just have to take my word, the word of respected food bloggers. or the word of the company that makes Ezekiel Bread. Studies have shown that sprouted grains have a much weaker effect on the body’s glycemic response (meaning, sprouted grain don’t cause a huge and detrimental sugar spike) and that regular whole wheat bread doesn’t have the same benefits.

What do you think? Do you currently eat bread? If not, tell me why. Do you eat Ezekiel Bread already? Will you try it now? Do you have another brand of sprouted grain bread you love? As always, I’d love to hear about it below in the comments.

In good health,

Zuzka

Sources:

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20 comments on “What Kind of Bread Should I Eat?”

  1. private avatar image
    Private

    Private  |  Los Angeles, CA, USA

    Yes! Ezekiel bread is a staple at my house.

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    Private

    Private  |  Havertown, Pennsylvania, USA

    Absolutely love Ezekiel bread! So delicious and nutritious, been hooked for years!

  3. private avatar image
    Private

    Private  |  Prague, Czech Republic

    I eat bread when I crave it, which is maybe once a week, or two. I have no gluten intolerance, therefore there is no reason to avoid it 🙂 Sometimes I make buckwheat bread, which is delicious. Ezekiel bread cannot be found here in Czech, and I wish we had it here, because I would love to try it.

  4. private avatar image
    Private

    Private  | 

    We eat sourdough bread, which in my opinion is the best option. Fermenting ensures that all the enzyme inhibitors are broken down to almost nothing if not completely. Gluten is also significantly lower in sourdough than the sprouted bread. I know that some people who can’t tolerate gluten do well with Sourdough. True sourdough bread however is hard to come by at the store. I make my own sometimes using Einkorn flour, which is the only wheat that has never been hybridized. It has only 15 chromosomes whereas modern wheat has around 42 I think. Einkorn is significantly lower in gluten and anti nutrients as well.
    We used to eat Ezekiel and it’s still a great option. I will still eat it if I don’t have access to sourdough.

    • private avatar image
      Private

      Private  | 

      Hi Kerrifit: Do you have a recipe for your sourdough bread?
      Also, what does it mean when you say, “Einkorn flour is the only wheat that has never been hybridized?”
      I guess rather, what are the implications of this nutritionally?

      Thanks…..

      • private avatar image
        Private

        Private  | 

        Hi Anna, here is a really good recipe http://nourishedkitchen.com/whole-grain-no-knead-sourdough/

        Einkorn wheat is the only pure wheat. Modern wheat has been crossbred throughout the years and it isn’t the same as it was in ancient times. Einkorn is also lower in gluten and anti nutrients therefore it’s easier to digest. It has a completely different genetic makeup than modern wheat and is more nutritious. However it is a harder flour to work with due to the low gluten.

        • private avatar image
          Private

          Private  | 

          Thank you Kerrifit so kindly for the link and also the information regarding the Einkorn.
          It’s funny because I went to the link you sent, and realized that I have that cookbook “The nourished kitchen”
          I bet that recipe is in there. I’m going to look!

          Thank you again!
          Anna

  5. private avatar image
    Private

    Private  | 

    I don’t eat bread of any kind, typically because I believe gluten and other grains do cause all sorts of digestive issues as well as autoimmune issues. Sprouted grains are absolutely the exception, though. I personally stay away from grains for the most part regardless of whether they have been sprouted or not because I do like to follow a low carb lifestyle. If I were to go for some bread, Ezekiel Bread would be the way to go…the only issue I might have would be the soy because soy tends to mess with our hormone levels. BUT everything in moderation, right?! I do love to experiment with making my own grain-free baked breads and goodies, but just like grains, I make sure my nuts and seeds are sprouted first because they too contain gut-damaging components.

    Thanks for posting this article, Zuzka!!! I do think it’s important for people to understand the difference that SPROUTING makes! Not only with grains, but also with nuts and seeds as well. It makes the process of digestion so much easier for our systems. 🙂

  6. private avatar image
    Private

    Private  |  Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

    My parents + grandparents are from Poland, they’re super snobby about their bread… they were generally not impressed with the “white” bread on the store shelves in Canada. There’s a Romanian bakery in my town, they have a big old fashioned stone oven and bake fresh rye bread a few times per week, and it’s the real deal. I have no problem digesting it unless of course, I eat too much at once… then I get bloated because you know, I’m full of crap.

  7. private avatar image
    Private

    Private  | 

    I stopped eating bread 4+ years ago due to brutal digestion issues, bloating etc… I’m not celiac and chose to clean house inside my body. I cut out all grains, beans, gluten, dairy (with the exception of a tich of steamed cream in my am espresso😋) and pretty much all sugar as well. It took some time to get the gut health back in balance etc but beyond worth the results. I don’t catch flu/ cold’s like I used to, I don’t sleep for hours and hours and feel lethargic and I’m not bloated!!!! Amazing results. The odd time I’ll eat some gluten but only if I have been well hydrated and have eaten light throughout my day. Do I miss bread? Who cuts out bread? ME! No I don’t miss it and anything else for that matter, I would have never believed it and I’m so glad I stuck to it. I used to eat Ezekiel bread (delicious indeed) and I may try it one time again but I opt for my homemade muffins packed full of fibre, good fat and protein and I’m more than satisfied. On occasion I get a bread that’s made from scratch at a home based business that has been making coconut bread with their own “starter”… for 25 yrs now. It’s magnificent! Resembles a sour dough type bread and it’s my treat on occasion other than that I don’t miss bread at all… happy for those who can enjoy it and have no issues. I’ll pass…. when your nutritionally satisfied you don’t crave junk and I feel I’m well on that journey! Yahoo

  8. private avatar image
    Private

    Private  |  Maui, HI, USA

    The most important thing for me when it comes to grains & breads that i can give a tip is CHEW CHEW CHEW! the more you chew you will notice it start tasting sweeter & much easier for your stomach to break down.

  9. private avatar image
    Private

    Private  | 

    Great article. I’ve never had a problem with gluten and therefore eat bread….usually those packed with seeds, oats,etc. I will definitely look for Ezekiel bread as I’ve been trying to look for a healthy replacement.

  10. private avatar image
    Private

    Private  | 

    Unfortunately, the gluten issue is a much more multi-dimensional issues than is laid out here. I would encourage anyone to research the work of Stephanie Seneff. Recognize that the agricultural and chemical industry has a powerful role in controlling information. Seek information from independent sources. Try to avoid giving too much credit to research/information that is funded by/supported by special interests.

    It’s not that “gluten is evil”. The rapid changes that have taken place in food crops, pesticide use, the use of GMOs and biotechnology, as well as pollution and other assaults to the immune systems of human beings plays a huge role. How individuals respond depends on genetics and epigenetics. The modern research shows that immune responses to gluten can occur in tissues all over the body, not just in the blood. So blood tests will more likely than not show no antibody responses.

    I study alternative medicine and intern in a medical clinic. I have seen patient after patient after patient improve a HUGE variety of health problems by removing gluten from their diets. Most of these patients had no digestive complaints after eating gluten or any “obviously attributable” symptoms. But it was clear that the inflammation in their bodies greatly reduced from removing gluten. Many can go back to eating gluten containing foods again after months of recovery and treatment. The “gluten issue” is a very complex issue.

    That said, I used to love Ezekiel bread! It’s good but it always gives me digestive problems/makes my intestines swell up and cramp. I thrive on gluten-free. And I grew up as a first generation Italian-American, eating pasta all the damned time. 😉

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