A sponsored post
I like to know what goes into my food, and try to buy healthy and fresh products. But these days, it’s hard to be sure. All kinds of crap are added during production and it’s difficult to know how food gets from the farm to the table.
Recently, the gluten-free movement has been sounding alarm bells about processed wheat, rye and other grains, raising concerns about its digestibility and nutritional value (or lack thereof). Some people are even cutting carbs and grains from their diets altogether.
But here’s the good news: you don’t have to!
Enter sprouted grains, the newest celeb in the slow food movement. Sprouted grains are the nutrient superhero of the legume family, promoting healthy digestion, without subjecting consumers to the kinds of gluten intolerances and digestive issues that processed bread does. If you choose the right baker, you can load up on bread all you like!
But what exactly are “sprouted grains” and how are they made?
Sprouted grains have nothing to do with the white bean sprouts added to your pad thai. We’re talking about minimally sprouted nuts, seeds, beans, rice, and grains. When it comes to bread, it’s not only the ingredients that matter, but also the manufacturing process.
Historically, many of our grains sprouted accidentally. Hundreds of years ago, people harvested their grains, tied them into sheaves, and left them in the field until they were ready to thresh the grain. Exposed to the weather, at least some of the grain would begin to sprout.
Today’s modern techniques have largely eradicated that natural process. Experts are worried that we’re losing big time in the nutrition department. For instance, did you know that organic sprouted grains, legumes and pods that have three times the nutrients of unsprouted seeds?
Most commercial breads are heavily processed because bread needs to be baked and ready for retail in 45 minutes. This doesn’t give the grain the time it needs to release valuable nutrients, or to break down gluten. Excess gluten often gives consumers digestive difficulties and may result in celiac disease.
I’m guessing you probably don’t have time to wait for grains to sprout in a random field. Luckily, a few companies, like ShaSha Bread Company, are going back to the basics and making bread the healthy way. They’re using “controlled sprouting” techniques: sprouting grains under carefully-controlled conditions, with just the right amount of moisture and warmth, until the important enzymatic processes are at their peak.
Then, the sprouted grains are used to make products. Sprouted grains can be munched, boiled, ground or baked into traditional dishes as easily as their non-sprouted ones.
- Find a baker that takes the time to prepare your bread the traditional way.
- Read labels to ensure that the right baking techniques and whole-grain ingredients are utilized.
- If you do choose gluten-free products, don’t be fooled into thinking that these items are healthier. Many gluten-free products have high fat and sugar contents and low nutritional values.
- Always read your labels and eat food that is organic, healthy and high in fiber, vitamins and minerals.
Remember: if your grandma wouldn’t recognize it, it’s probably not real food!