Your Bread is Too White

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Could your bread, rice, crackers and pasta have too much starch and not enough fiber?

Preference May Differ From Requirement

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With your coffee shop breakfast or deli sandwich, a server asks, “White, wheat, or rye?” You need carbohydrates for energy. The three types of carbohydrates are sugar, starch, and fiber. So your bread choice is a carb. Types of sugar, the simplest form of carb, include fruit sugar (fructose), table sugar (sucrose), and milk sugar (lactose).

Eat Less White Bread

Most carbohydrates convert into glucose before entering the blood­stream. This is used to produce a fuel molecule called adeno­sine triphosphate (ATP). Your body stores a small amount of excess glucose as glycogen primarily in the liver and muscle. When muscles reach their limit of glycogen, carbo­hydrates convert into triglyceride molecules and stored as fat.

Eliminating all carbs is not the solution to fat accumu­la­tion. Remem­ber, you need carbo­hydrates for energy. Three ways to reduce fat are, one: slow the conversion to glucose with high-fiber foods, two: consume appro­priate portions of carbo­hydrates, three: use the energy fuel by exercising.

All fruit and vegetables are carbo­hydrates. But foods like celery, kale and carrots have significant fiber to slow digestion. White flour, white bread, white rice and other processed grains lack their fibrous outer shell. So instead of lingering in our digestive system until we use the fuel, the carbs quickly convert to glucose (sugar). If you learn to make your own bread, you can control the quality of grains used.

Using the MyPlate method of portion control, one quarter of our plate (1/2 cup) should be whole grains like brown rice, bulgur and quinoa or starchy vegetables. Common sources of naturally occurring carbohydrates include:

  • Fruits
  • Grains
  • Legumes
  • Milk
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Vegetables

Here is your fat-burning tip for the day: Include protein with each of your three daily meals. If you get hungry between meals, briskly walk for 15–20 minutes, drink a cup of water and then, with a clear head, consider healthy snack options. This should prevent you from binging on excess processed carbohydrates and keep you A Bit More Healthy.

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Kevin Williams is a health advocate and writer of hundreds of articles for multiple web­sites, including: A Bit More Healthy, KevinMD (WebMD), and Sue’s Nutrition Buzz. He is a prior 15-year con­sul­tant for Neutrogena Research and Scientific Affairs.

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