Healthy eating is one of the most important factors in good mood, energy and lifestyle. However, unfortunately, many people don't have the information readily available to them on how to eat healthily. Many may perceive that getting their fruit and vegetables is enough, and others may not realise the negative long-term impacts of excessive saturated fats and sugars.
Fortunately, at Jomeis Fine Foods, we've made it our lifelong mission to connect people who want to eat healthy with the information they need to do so. Therefore, the following blog seeks to overlook one of the most vital parts of a healthy diet; grains.
Often mistaken for the seeds found in wholemeal bread, grains are essential to helping aid digestion, positive gut health and the reduction in risk of heart disease. Despite how easy they are to access, though, grains are one of the most overlooked parts of the Western diet. This is a contributing factor to increased bloating, constipation and feelings of sluggishness that are so often quoted about in today's society.
So first of all, what are the benefits of grains
Natural grains, not refined grain products, have an incredibly high volume of fibre, vitamins, minerals and nutrients. They are one of the best ways to fuel the body with the energy and sustenance it needs to function well throughout the day. This makes them a fantastic breakfast alternative and is why oats have been considered one of the most common breakfast choices for decades - they make you feel good.
The right combination of grains can also have powerful anti-inflammatory properties, which are essential as we age. This can reduce the chances of aches and pains, extreme fatigue, unusual weight gain and, in serious cases, autoimmune disorders.
The best grains for healthy eating: Buckwheat
Buckwheat is one of the number one grains for those looking for holistic improvements to their health. Many studies show that it has the potential to improve heart health, reduce blood sugar and protect against cancer. It is also a great alternative to coeliacs and vegans as it is entirely gluten-free and animal product free.
If you're unsure how to prepare buckwheat, you're in luck. Our healthy Superfood Breakfast Bowls contain a potent amount of buckwheat to promote good digestion and the nurturing of a healthy gut.
If you're looking for more alternatives, buckwheat is a great one to rice and can be used in any dish you would traditionally eat with rice. We love this plant-based Buckwheat Stir Fry recipe.
The best grains for healthy eating: Whole Barley
Whole Barley is a cereal grain, which has been in the human diet for centuries. It has declined in popularity with the rise of other breakfast options, including sugary-laden cereals and oats. But it is super easy to prepare and is fantastic for the body. Just some of its benefits include its high mineral content and high fibre content. It is also shown that regular consumption can reduce cholesterol and blood sugar levels.
It's important to note that Whole Barley does contain gluten, so it is not a good alternative for those living a gluten-free diet.
We adore this Breakfast Barley Porridge Recipe, which is perfect for a winter's morning. Sprinkle some of our Nutritional Latte Powder over it for an extra kick of flavour.
The best grains for healthy eating: Quinoa
The quinoa craze took the world by storm a few years ago, and it's no secret why. Quinoa packs an absolute punch when it comes to health and nutrition, and it's so easy to add to your diet. Eating it regularly, alongside a balanced diet, can fuel your body with antioxidants and essential vitamins and minerals. Quinoa is also relatively safe for people with food intolerances, making it a great way to add protein and fibre to your diet.
Beware however, quinoa is still a carb, and like all carbs, it should be consumed in moderation to ensure you get the most out of its endless benefits. If you're looking for a tasty quinoa meal to try to help you fall in love with this superfood all over again, we can't get enough of this one-pan Mexican Quinoa.
How many grains should you eat a day?
Nutritionists and health experts will recommend a minimum of around 150 grams of grains per day. But, as always, personal lifestyle and health factors will come into play. Despite this, many people aren't getting enough grains in their diet, simply due to the dietary choices they make. Trying a different alternative for dinner or even for meal prepping this week which is rich in grains could make all the difference in how you feel. So, don't wait, try it for yourself.
And as always, if you're ever in doubt, don't forget you can contact the Jomeis Fine Foods team for support.