Advertisement

How do I choose whole grain products?

Janis Jibrin, MS, RD
Nutrition & Dietetics
There are several whole grain foods that are good for the body. Choose the more intact form or coarser cut of the grain. For wheat, that means bulgur wheat (found in health food stores and Middle Eastern markets) and wheat berries. Always buy 100% whole wheat, whole rye, or other whole grain breads, cold and hot cereals, crackers, crispbreads, English muffins, bagels, and wraps, and whenever possible choose stone ground, a process that keeps the amylase-blocking substance intact. When choosing oatmeal, get steel-cut, which is the thickest cut, or thick-cut oats. (Steel-cut takes 30 minutes to cook, but some companies sell parboiled versions that are just as good and take only about 5 minutes.) Buy brown rice instead of white and whole corn grits instead of regular.
The Best Life Guide to Managing Diabetes and Pre-Diabetes

More About this Book

The Best Life Guide to Managing Diabetes and Pre-Diabetes

Bob Greene has helped millions of Americans become fit and healthy with his life-changing Best Life plan. Now, for the first time, Oprah's trusted expert on diet and fitness teams up with a leading...
Dr. Michael Roizen, MD
Internal Medicine
Look at the first six items on a food label. The first item that names grains should say "whole wheat," "oats," "oats, unprocessed," "brown rice," or "corn." Choose products that have more whole grain content than processed-grain content.
The RealAge Makeover: Take Years off Your Looks and Add Them to Your Life

More About this Book

The RealAge Makeover: Take Years off Your Looks and Add Them to Your Life

Why not live at 60 feeling like you did at 35?Thousands of Americans are younger today than they were five years ago. How is that possible? By following the specific recommendations that reverse...
Toby Smithson
Nutrition & Dietetics

The best way to search for a whole grain product is to look for the whole grain label symbol on the package. You cannot rely on the ingredient list as it is based on weight of ingredients so the whole grain portion of the product may not meet the definition of 51% or more of whole grain flour for example. If there is only one (whole grain) ingredient such as oats on the oatmeal label, you can be assured this is a whole grain.

Vandana  R. Sheth
Nutrition & Dietetics

If you see the word "whole" listed in front of the grain in the ingredient list that is a clue that the product has whole grain. If you see the Whole grain Stamp on a label that can be an easy way of choosing whole grain products. The 100% Stamp means that the food contains a full serving or more of whole grain in each labeled serving and that ALL the grain is whole grain, while the basic Whole Grain Stamp appears on products containing at least half a serving of whole grain per labeled serving.

To shop for whole grains, just be a skeptic. It takes only a few seconds. Keep scanning the aisles until you see "100% whole grains" on package labels. You can almost always bet that if the packaging doesn't say 100% on the outside, it's not going to be found on the inside.
Mary Mullen
Nutrition & Dietetics
Here are a few tips to help you bring home bread that’s a guaranteed whole grain winner.
  • Play the name game. Check the front of the package for words such as “whole wheat” or “100% whole grain” listed by the name of the bread. To use these words on a label, the bread must be made with the “whole” grain, including the endosperm, germ, and bran. Refined bread, often called “wheat bread,” is not whole grain bread because the germ and the bran (which provide fiber) were removed when the flour was processed.
  • Look for signs. Some bread packages sport a 100% whole grain seal on the front of the package.
  • Don’t let the color fool you. Some manufacturers make bread brown by using coloring, so don’t assume all brown breads are whole grain. On the other hand, you can now buy white whole wheat breads that have all the nutritional benefits of other whole grain breads.
  • Scan the ingredients list. For a 100% whole grain bread, the whole grain (whole wheat, whole grain oats, whole grain barley, etc.) will be the first ingredient on the list.
  • Get the fiber facts. Read the Nutrition Facts and select a whole grain bread that provides at least three grams of fiber per serving.
Healthy Eating, Healthy Weight for Kids and Teens

More About this Book

Healthy Eating, Healthy Weight for Kids and Teens

In a world of fast food, supersized sodas, and televised temptations, this guide shows how to buck the obesity trend currently in the national spotlight—and have fun doing it. Using a family...
Kodi Moore
Nutrition & Dietetics
Millet is a delicious, and little known grain. It is a good source of thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, B-6, folate, fiber, iron, magnesium and zinc! Serve as a side dish.

Quinoa is another great whole grain that is also a good quality source of protein; it is high in iron, magnesium, phosphorous and zinc. Serve as the base of a grain salad, as a side dish or for breakfast with walnuts and cooked diced apples.
Alice Pereira, RD
Nutrition & Dietetics
Whole grains are easy to find but checking labels is important. Make sure you check the ingredient list for the word "whole" or "whole grains." Stock up on brown rice, wild rice, barley, oats, quinoa, whole wheat pasta and whole wheat bread.
 
This content originally appeared online at Baptist Health South Florida. 
Cindy Gay
Nutrition & Dietetics
100% whole wheat bread, oatmeal, brown rice, quinoa, whole wheat couscous, barley, bulgur, spelt, corn tortillas, whole wheat flour, whole grain cornmeal, whole wheat pasta.

Continue Learning about Health Value Of Foods

Mushroom Magic
Mushroom Magic
I have always liked mushrooms as a food choice. Not until the last several years have I appreciated them for their medicinal value. In fact, I find th...
Read More
How does eating garlic affect my body?
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MDDr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Garlic is highly medicinal - it blocks the enzymes that allow viruses to flourish, it can lower bad ...
More Answers
5 Top Foods for Your Heart, Plus 1 to Avoid
5 Top Foods for Your Heart, Plus 1 to Avoid5 Top Foods for Your Heart, Plus 1 to Avoid5 Top Foods for Your Heart, Plus 1 to Avoid5 Top Foods for Your Heart, Plus 1 to Avoid
What's best to eat for your ticker? A heart doctor weighs in.
Start Slideshow
Why Is Dark Chocolate Healthy?
Why Is Dark Chocolate Healthy?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.