What Exactly Are Whole Grains?

Green living with tucsongreentimes.com.

The seeds of plants of the grass family are called whole grains. This seed, or kernel, has three key parts: the germ, the bran, and the endosperm.

Whole grains include whole wheat, whole oats/oatmeal, whole-grain corn, popcorn, brown rice, whole rye, whole-grain barley, wild rice, buckwheat, bulgur (cracked wheat), millet, quinoa, and sorghum. Other less common whole grains include amaranth, emmer, farro, grano (lightly pearled wheat), spelt, and wheat berries.

In study after study, researchers find that higher whole grain intake showed lowered risk of heart disease and stroke, plus whole grains may help lower cholesterol, blood sugar and insulin levels, as well as reduce inflammation in the circulatory system.

Surveys show few Americans get the recommended three servings of whole grains per day. Even some people eating a raw vegan diet do not eat enough whole grains and according to the authors of a new study, 40 percent of U.S. adults say they eat no whole grains at all.

Many consumers and health professionals are not aware of the health benefits of whole grains. A lot of health problems could be helped by eating whole grains as part of a natural whole food diet.