July 14, 2016

14/07/2016: Grains – challenging press perceptions

Image: Daniel Spiess
In spite of the thousands of research studies showing grain foods are key in a nutritious diet, they are still demonised in some parts of the world
by Judi Adams, MS, RDN, J Adams & Co. Consulting
First published in Milling and Grain, May 2016  

Disparagement of carbohydrates dates back to the 1800’s and is periodically revived by charlatans who want to sell books or products. Unfortunately, primarily in developed countries, many citizens are looking for “magic bullets” to lose weight. Low-carbohydrate diets have been shown to reduce weight faster than high-carb diets, but the weight comes back just as quickly when the diet is ended. The good news is that few people can stay on a low-carb diet long enough to do any permanent damage to their bodies.
Grain foods are also accused of causing numerous diseases and conditions, but a recent article from CIMMYT (International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center) puts those accusations in proper perspective:
“If it were correct that cereals were the cause of Alzheimer’s, arteriosclerosis, Parkinson’s, autism and loss of cognitive capacity and neurodevelopmental disorders, civilization would have been incapacitated and come to a halt many years ago.” (Anti-Wheat Fad Diets Undermine Global Food Security Efforts: Wheat consumption healthy despite claims in self-help publications. Roberto J. Peña, Hans J. Braun and Julie Mollins. 2014.)
Gluten-free products: what’s the future?
Gluten-free, which is the therapeutic diet for those with celiac disease (CD), has become a fad around the world in countries where citizens are affluent enough to pick and choose what they want to eat. In reality it is just another low-carbohydrate diet. While we know the incidence of celiac disease (CD) has increased, it still averages about 1 percent of the population worldwide. However, Scandinavian countries as well as Ireland and Italy have much higher percentages as do some Middle Eastern and North African countries.
Read the full article in Milling and Grain HERE.    

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