5 Ways To Get More Whole Grains (Without Eating Bread)

Making the switch to whole wheat bread and whole wheat pasta are great ways to get more of the all-important unrefined grains (and some much-needed fiber) into your diet. And despite the fact that pasta and bread can be a good way to reap all the benefits whole grains have to offer, you can’t exactly eat that for every meal (bummer, right?).

Not to worry, though, there is a hefty list of whole grain heavy hitters that offer all the health perks you’re after—fiber, several B vitamins and minerals such as iron, magnesium and selenium. Not to mention that whole grains help to reduce your risk of heart disease, constipation, as well as supporting a healthy weight. Here are some of the many great grains you can enjoy:

  • Amaranth (can be gluten free)
  • Barley
  • Brown rice (can be gluten free)
  • Buckwheat (kasha) (can be gluten free)
  • Bulgur
  • Cornmeal (grits, polenta) (can be gluten free)
  • Couscous
  • Farro
  • Millet (can be gluten free)
  • Oats (can be gluten free)
  • Quinoa (can be gluten free)
  • Rye
  • Sorghum (can be gluten free)
**While the whole grains indicated as gf are naturally gluten free, specific products may vary.

5 Super Easy Ways To Get More Whole Grains

1.    Oatmeal is an obvious choice for breakfast, and a tasty one. But make sure you opt for steel-cut oats, which are less refined than rolled oats. Or shake up your morning routine by cooking up grits or buckwheat for your hot cereal (or better yet, shrimp and grits for lunch anyone?).

2.    Cooked barley, besides being a tasty side dish, can make a hearty addition to your favorite vegetable soup for a satisfying lunch or dinner. Be sure to make enough barley (or quinoa) to sprinkle what’s left over onto your next salad (super tasty!).

3.    Build dinner around a serving of polenta or quinoa-pasta topped with sauteed vegetables (totally delicious!).

4.    Vary your favorite recipes simply by making whole grain substitutions. Instead of making a risotto or a pilaf side dish with white rice, try using buckwheat, millet, couscous or polenta as the grain. Whichever one you use will take on the flavors of the other ingredients in the recipe (you really can’t go wrong with these options!).

5.    Because many grains cook in little time, take advantage of the convenience factor and make an extra-large batch that you can utilize in several different dishes. The cooked grains will keep for up to 4 days in the fridge to use as you like (lunch and dinner…consider it done!).

There’s more to whole health than great grains.

To ensure that you’re getting all the vital vitamins and nutrients your body needs, a great option is a nutrition consultation. By working with the specialty-trained experts of GMC’s Nutrition & Weight Management program, you’ll learn the key to utilizing healthful foods in order to look and feel your very best. Just remember, a healthy outside starts on the inside.

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