Foods with whole grains are fairly easy to find. You want to make sure that the first ingredient listed on the food package by the Nutrition Label indicates “whole grain” or “whole wheat.” The MyPlate website suggests that at least half of the grains we eat should be whole grains.
The ingredients list on your food package will list the ingredients in order based on what is used most (by weight) in that food item. You want to find the word “whole” in front of any grain ingredient that is in the food item, or look for the “100% Whole Grain” stamp on the front of the package. If the words “enriched” or “fortified” are in front of the word “grain” then you will know that the food is not a whole grain item, but in fact a processed grain. A whole grain product includes all three parts of the original grain: bran, germ and endosperm. Together, these three parts provide fiber, vitamins and minerals. The enriched grain product does not contain the bran or germ. So, the next time that you’re purchasing food, try choosing the whole grain foods in order to help protect your heart.
Additional health and nutrition information can be found at MissouriFamilies.org.
Contributors: TeNeal Minks, Dietetic Intern, MO DHSS; Denise Schmitz, M.A., R.D., Nutrition & Health Education Specialist, University of Missouri Extension, firstname.lastname@example.org, 816-482-5854