People have consumed whole grains, including whole wheat for at least tens of thousands of years. Nowadays whole wheat can be found in products such as whole wheat bread, whole wheat pasta or Martino’s whole wheat couscous that is made of 100% whole durum wheat semolina.
But what exactly does whole wheat mean:
In its natural state, growing in the ﬁelds, wheat is made up of three edible parts – the bran, the germ, and the endosperm – covered by an inedible husk that protects the kernel from sunlight, pests, water, and diseases. Wheat is considered to be whole as long as all three original parts — the bran, germ, and endosperm — are still present in the same proportions as when the grain was growing in the ﬁelds. Grains can be rolled, crushed or cracked, but as long as these three parts are still present in their original proportion, they’re considered whole grains.
Here are some of the key nutrients found in integral products:
Whole grains are particularly high in fiber and B vitamins, including niacin, thiamin and folate.
They also contain a good amount of minerals, such as zinc, iron, magnesium and manganese. Whole grains provide several grams of protein per serving while several compounds in whole grains act as antioxidants. These include phytic acid, lignin and sulfur compounds. Last but not least, whole grains deliver many types of plant compounds that play a role in preventing diseases. These include lignans, stanols and sterols.
On the other side refined grains have had the germ and bran removed, leaving only the endosperm.
Although enriched refined grains have had some vitamins and minerals added back, they’re still not as healthy or nutritious as the whole versions.
Prestige is the Couscous that Martino has created for those who want the best: steaming, first quality grain, unique organoleptic and nutritional qualities for this 100% Italian taste product.
Whole grains deliver a wide variety of health benefits
They Lower Your Risk of Heart Disease and stroke
One of the biggest health benefits of whole grains is that they lower your risk of heart disease. Researchers have concluded that heart-healthy diets should include more whole grains and fewer refined grains. Whole grains are recommended in the DASH diet and Mediterranean diet, as they contain three compounds: fiber, vitamin K and antioxidants which may help lower the risk of stroke.
They Reduce Your Risk of Obesity and of Type 2 Diabetes
Eating fiber-rich foods can help fill you up and prevent overeating. This is one reason high-fiber diets are recommended for weight loss. Whole grains and products made from them are more filling than refined grains, and a lot of research suggests that they may lower your risk of obesity. In fact, eating three servings of whole grains daily was linked to lower BMIs and less belly fat. In part, this is because fiber-rich whole grains can also help with weight control and prevent obesity, a risk factor for diabetes.
They Can Reduce the Risk of Cancer
Research on whole grains and cancer risk has provided mixed results, although they do show promise.
The health benefits linked to fiber may help lower the risk of cancer. These include its role as an antioxidant and a prebiotic. Lastly, other components of whole grains, including phytic acid, phenolic acids and saponins, may also slow the development of cancer.
How to recognize products that are truly whole wheat
Some foods that seem to be whole grains may not be, it’s important to know what to look for.
Here are some tips that work:
Be sure to read the ingredients list to see if a product is made from whole grains. Look for the word “whole” in front of types of grains. For instance, you’ll want “whole wheat,” not “wheat.” Remember, if it simply says “wheat” (not “whole wheat”) it’s not whole.
When you’re purchasing processed whole grain products like Martino’s couscous, read the ingredients list to make sure they’re made entirely from whole grains, not a mixture of whole and refined grains. You will find percentages in the ingredients list.
Also keep an eye on the sugar content, especially in the case of breakfast cereals, which often contain large amounts of added sugar.
How to Incorporate Whole Grains into Your Diet
There are many ways to incorporate whole grains into your diet. Perhaps the simplest thing to do is find whole grain alternatives for the refined grains in your diet. Also make sure to add Martino’s whole wheat Couscous in your diet, it gives you all the benefits of whole grains and it is ready in 5 minutes. Available in 500g packages.
Let us know which whole wheat products from Martino’s you love and how they help you stay healthier.