What is the healthiest bread?
Convenient, versatile and tasty, bread is a daily staple for many of us, but is it a healthy option? And which are the best loaves to eat? Nutritionist Kerry Torrens takes us on a journey through the baking aisle.
What makes bread good for you?
Our top picks for a healthier loaf
What to look for when choosing a healthy bread?
- Choose bread made from an unrefined, wholegrain flour. Labelling can be deceiving, so even if your loaf is labelled multi-grain (made from three or more different flours), granary, 100 per cent wheat or organic, this does not guarantee that the bread is wholegrain, so always check the ingredient list to confirm this.
- Select a bread with minimal ingredients. The length of the ingredient list reveals a lot about the baking method and the processes used in manufacture. In simple terms, look for the shortest ingredient list with terms you recognise, and avoid breads with added sweeteners or vegetable oils.
- Use your loaf and know what you are looking for. Sourdough is a hot ticket right now, but if you don’t make your own or buy from an artisan baker, there are some things to look out for. In the UK, ‘sourdough’ is not a protected name, this means manufacturers can sell bread as sourdough despite it not being made using the all-important slow fermentation method. Some of these breads include ingredients like yeast, ascorbic acid, vinegar and yogurt in an attempt to mimic the flavour of sourdough, speed up production time and extend shelf life. If you want to enjoy the benefits of a true sourdough, check labels and avoid these ingredients.
This article was published on 26th August 2020.
Kerry Torrens BSc. (Hons) PgCert MBANT is a registered nutritionist with a post graduate diploma in Personalised Nutrition & Nutritional Therapy. She is a member of the British Association for Nutrition and Lifestyle Medicine (BANT) and a member of the Guild of Food Writers. Over the last 15 years she has been a contributing author to a number of nutritional and cookery publications including BBC Good Food.
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