Many people have wondered at some point whether bread is making them fat. Others, including myself, have always wanted to know whether any of the widespread ‘myths’ about bread are actually true.
Nutritionists and health experts are quick to condemn us for overeating carbs, particularly bread. On the other hand, the government currently advises us that starchy foods should make up the largest part of our diets.
Over the years, we’ve come to know that wholegrain breads have a lot more nutritional value than white bread, but one question still remains unclear: how much bread should we eat as part of our daily diet? Let me try and break down the recent claims– it’s the ‘yeast’ I can do.
According to a recent survey carried out by Bakers Delight in Australia, it seems many women believe the myths about eating bread, with a large number steering clear of the carb as a result. The nationwide study of over 1,000 women, aged between 25 and 65, aimed to bust bread myths and challenge people’s assumptions.
Basing the study on women alone seems rather strange, as I’m sure most Australian guys are interested in the findings too. In the UK, men eat more bread than women: 44% of men eat it twice daily compared with 25% of women. Read more bread stats in Fab Flour's facts about bread – it’s more interesting than it sounds!
Anyway, the research revealed some interesting findings. Once seen as an essential part of our diet, these days bread gets a bad wrap, blamed for making us fat and bloated. In particular, the gluten found in bread receives a lot of criticism.
The study also found that over one-third of Australian women are on the lookout for healthier options, with 65% stating there is not enough information about healthier bread. Whatever happened to reading some free food articles on the Internet?
Sharon Natoli, Director of Food and Nutrition Australia, blames all the low-carb diet fads for creating a stigma around carbs. She said the survey findings were reflective of on-going nutritional debates, which continue to fuel doubt around healthier bread alternatives.
Most importantly, Ms Natoli added that there is no evidence to prove bread alone contributes to weight gain. Some people load their bread with butter, cheese or other high fat ingredients and then blame the bread. In addition, larger research studies have indicated that people with higher intakes of wholegrain foods, such as grain breads, are less likely to put on the pounds over time.
While the survey results are thought provoking, you can’t help but think the results may be a tad biased, especially as they were carried out by Baker’s Delight, a well-known bakery chain across Australia. Would you really expect them to criticise bread? I think we should ‘wheat’ for a new study to disprove these findings before weighing up the arguments.