Choosing whole grains will lead to a healthier lifestyle

Learn about the benefits of eating whole grains while celebrating Whole Grains Month in September.

September is Whole Grains Month. Whole grains are the entire seed of a plant. A seed is often referred to as a kernel, which is comprised of three different parts: bran, endosperm and germ. Whole grains include grains like wheat, rice, quinoa, rye, corn and spelt. When these foods are eaten in their whole form, they look very different than in a refined form.

Whole grains pack a ton of vitamins, minerals, proteins and carbohydrates. When these whole grains are refined into other forms, a lot of these natural vitamins and minerals are lost. Due to U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) laws, processors have to add back the vitamins and nutrients that are lost during processing. It is just so much healthier to eat whole grains.

When grocery shopping, remember the health benefits when you see brown rice versus refined rice, wheat bread versus white bread, wheat noodles versus enriched white noodles, etc. Although whole grains are found far less than other grains on the shelf in supermarkets, health experts encourage consumers to eat whole grains as half of their daily grain consumption.

Eating whole grains have been linked to lower breast cancer risk in women in the U.S. Eating whole grains and gaining the benefits from the many vitamins and nutrients are essential to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Choose whole grains today and choose a healthier lifestyle!

Michigan State University Extension supports healthy living and eating. Since health is a part of 4-H, the healthy youth programs in MSU Extension help to foster healthy living for youth and adults.

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