Long lauded for their health benefits, the evidence of just how good whole grains are is continuing to build. Today’s consumers are becoming ever more health-conscious and are making more and more buying decisions based on what is the healthiest option.
Health experts now recommend that at least half the grains in a person’s diet are from whole grains. This International Whole Grain Day we wanted to take the opportunity to look at where whole grains can be used to help improve the health claims of a product.
What is a whole grain?
Before we go any further we should look at what whole grains are.
Whole grains can be used in their whole form, but can also be processed into flours, flaked or kibbled. The grain must however retain all the parts of the seed (bran, germ and endosperm). They can be single foods such as brown rice and popcorn, or ingredients in products, such as wheat flakes in muesli or wholemeal spelt flour in bread.
Healthy whole grains
When compared to other grains, whole grains offer a wide range of health benefits.
Whole grains are packed with nutrients, including protein, fibre, B vitamins, antioxidants. Research published in the Journal of Nutrition suggests that incorporating whole grains into the diet may help to reduce cardiovascular disease, support weight maintenance and regulate blood pressure.
Where can whole grains be used?
What you may not realise is that many of the products we process at Silvery Tweed are whole grain. This puts us in a great position to be able to help with producing both new healthy products as well as improving the health claims of existing ones.
At Silvery Tweed we can supply wheat, rye, spelt and barley in wholegrain formats. These can be rolled into flakes, milled into flours or chopped into kibbles. As well as processing whole grains we also have whole grains in our portfolio for adding to blends such as millet, quinoa and buckwheat. Our granolas are made using wholegrain oats.
One way that you can easily increase the health claims of a product is by substituting out one product for a healthier version. For example, swapping white rice for brown or substituting part of your white flour in biscuit and cookie recipes with a wholemeal, rye or spelt flour to give a multigrain version that has the benefits of having a range of grains present. Whole grains can also be added to soups to further boost healthy credentials.
If you want to find out how including whole grains into your products can add health claims to them, contact us today.