Wednesday, November 2, 2011


While doing some research on bread, I came across this post and decided it was worth sharing today. There are a lot of mixed reviews weather or not bread should be a part of your diet. Hopefully this helps point you in the right direction.

If you have a great bread recipe and would like to share, I would love it! Also, if you have a gluten free bread recipe that actually tastes good, I would love to try it as well! When you leave your recipe in the comments, please specify if you do or do not want me to post your recipe. Thanks :)

1. Bag bread is one of the worst things you can put in your (or your children's) digestive system. It's been made fast and with refined flour - read below for clarification...

2. Genuine sourdough bread is the best "normal" bread option. It takes longer to make (see more below) and has fewer additives to worry about. Usually made with flour, water and salt. Less is more.

3. Sprouted bread, although I don't eat it, is theorticaly the best. The grain used to make the bread is sprouted, making it more digestible and less likely to form glue in your intestine, which brings me to...

4. Bread made with refined white flour has had the fibre stripped out of it. Modern wheat has also been carefully bred to be high in gluten forming protein. To cut a long story short, gluten has been implicated in damaging the wall of your intestine, causing malabsorption. It also gets stuck and forms blockages in your intestine.

5. Bread that has been fermented (proven, risen, let rest) for a long time (i.e. sourdough) is easier to digest, as fermentation essentially pre-digests the bread for you. Back to point 1, bag bread is made so fast that there's almost no pre-digestion.

6. Wheat has been bred to give us strong, glutinous bread, but our bodies haven't adapted so fast. Spelt and Kamut are ancient grains that are more naturally suited to our digestive system. Rye is naturally low in gluten.

7. Perhaps most interestingly, the enzymes that digest starch (flour) are mostly found in your saliva. So chew your food! Once is reaches your stomach, the enzymes don't work so well.

8. Adding to point 7, protein inhibits the starch-digesting enzymes. Protein thrives in an acidic environment. Guess what's in your stomach? And guess what nuts are high in? So next time you eat a peanut butter sandwich, consider that digestion of the bread pretty much stops at your mouth.

9. And finally... whole wheat bag bread is not automatically better for you, as it has missed out on fermentation. The "whole" part of whole wheat is the bran and germ, which are two components of the grain which are filtered out to make white flour. The bran is the husk of the grain. It protects the grain from sprouting and releasing its nutrients until the right conditions prevail. The right conditions are moisture for about 48hrs, which you'll see if you've ever made alfalfa sprouts or even planted a seed in your garden. Most breads skip this waiting time so you're a) missing out on the nutrients that the grain has to offer and b) eating indigestible pieces of starch. A long fermentation (sourdough, sprouted bread) lets you access nutrients and digestion.

If you know a good sourdough bakery near you, ask how long they ferment or prove their dough for. If it takes less than a day to make a loaf, find another bakery.

So, in summary:

Chew your bread
Choose genuine, slow fermented sourdough
or make your own!

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