Published: 01/09/2015 - Updated: 03/08/2020
Author: Dra. Loredana Lunadei, PhD
The white color in bread, pasta, or flour could seem very attractive and appetizing, but you must know what you’re eating whenever you consume these products. Refined grains are anything that is ground, to then extract the shell, germ and seed, consequently leaving a low-quality dietary product that lacks nutrients. The majority of industries that process refined grains need to add minerals and extra vitamins to compensate for this loss. The nutritive material that is thrown away by the machines ends up as a leftover that, at the end of the day, is actually the part that really contains all the nutrients.
In ancient times, grains were crushed with stones and human hands used the seeds and grains to prepare all sorts of baked goods, cookies, etc. The mills of today are ran by a very efficient technology to increase mass grain production that the whole world currently consumes. These types of advanced mills could have their mass production benefits, but on the other hand, in terms of nutrition, they leave much to be desired.
Once the grain is ground by these machines, it looses its vital energy. This means it looses its vitamins, enzymes, nutrients, etc. The moment the grain is crushed, it is no longer organic and can no longer sprout nor reproduce itself, leaving essentially flour lacking any nutritive quality, which is known as refined flour. Also, a lot of factories frequently ad all sorts of additives to these flours to make them attractive and whitened. The whiteners used are just as strong as chlorine. They also add colorings and very sophisticated chemical elements. The result: the product that we consume is a mixture of chemicals, additives and preservatives, with a few added vitamins (and only this, in a few cases).
Celiacs and white flour
The population’s excessive consumption of refined products and grains has led the population to develop and suffer from a long list of conditions, such as beriberi (body weakness), scurvy, intolerance to certain grains, allergies, skin problems, etc. All of this is due to the lack of natural vitamins in grains consumed, and to the fact that the stomach and internal organs have to constantly fight against additives, preservatives, irritating chemical agents that wear the body’s health down along with its vital strength.
Once refined, whole grain rice or wheat, for example, lose practically all of its nutritive material, which comes primarily from its shell. As a result, this leaves essentially just the starch and a little bit of albumin after the refining process. Then, white grains receive all sorts of additional nutrients to give them some sort of nutritive value. In addition to this, a lot of flours have added sugar (which could be disguised by other names, like dextrose, lactose, fructose, sucrose, etc.). This takes away even more points in terms of nutrition. Refined sugar is another product that completely lacks nutritive values, attacks and wears down the nervous and hormonal system, and only creates excess weight and health problems, severely lowering the body’s defenses. Light sugar, or low-calorie sugar is another of the additives that is added to refined breads or pasta. It is another harmful ingredient to health, and it tricks the body into thinking it is consuming energy, but when the body gets ready to metabolize this energy, it is left with nothing, which causes imbalances in the body.
Cavities and refined grains
The lack of chewing whole grains, on the other hand, causes the flour or baked goods that we consume to be too soft, and sticks much easier to teeth. The teeth have slowly gotten out of their natural function of grinding grains. If refined flour or pasta contains additional sugar, then the mass ends up like super glue and stays between teeth, making it very difficult to get rid of. That’s why boxed refined grains are the worse for children, because this could cause them all sorts of dental diseases if they don’t brush their teeth well.
So, as you see, if you’re going to consume refined bread or flour, we suggest you buy non-refined products instead, without any additional sugar nor light sugar, with the whole shell or grain. These retain all their fiber and essential nutrients for good nutrients. If you think they don’t taste as good as refined products, try to find brand name, because currently a lot of companies prepare non-refined products which are fairly good.
About the author