Bread is a very nutritious food that provides few fats, lot ofcarbohydrates, and a considerable amount of fiber. In addition, it is a healthy food. What would become of us without the bread? Throughout the centuries, this food has become one of the basic pillars that sustain the human being’s diet. Its production began to occur around 8,000 BC and from there, other more advanced civilizations such as Egyptian, Greek, or Roman had this food present in any of their diets.
The fundamental difference between white and whole grain bread, in terms of nutritional aspects is that in the latter it offers more fiber, vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, antioxidants, and more complete proteins. On the other hand, the white has more carbohydrates of carbon and some proteins of lower biological value. Although it is important not to consider this aspect as fundamental, because not only do we eat bread and the rest of the food in general cover the needs of nutrients in the body.
The nutritional characterization of bread highlights outstanding contributions of proteins of high biological value. It contains minerals such as selenium, phosphorus, potassium, and magnesium.It also contains vitamins such as niacin (B3), pyridoxine (B6), and carotene. Similarly, it has fiber and natural antioxidants, which make it among the healthy foods. The nutritional value of bread is determined by the degree of grinding, the type of cereal, the ingredients, and the baking process.
The consumption of bread with other foods of vegetable origin such as legumes also allows achieving a good complement of amino acids, providing one food what the other lacks and obtaining a higher quality protein mixture. The white bread provides about 3.5 g of fiber / 100 g, but the whole bread provides about 7.5 g / 100 g. This contribution is very valuable given that the average diet today is poor in fiber, which is associated directly and indirectly with the suffering of various degenerative diseases.
All this has a special relevance when it is considered that the bread constitutesa quantitatively remarkable part of the diet of the day. Since the bread should be present in the meals of the day, from breakfast to dinner, its hydrocarbon, protein, vitamin, mineral and fiber intake will necessarily represent a fraction very important of the daily needs. Taking into account the eating habits of the western developed populations, the decrease in the consumption of bread can unbalance, in an important way, the caloric profile of the diet by decreasing the contribution of carbohydrates, increasing that of proteins and fats, which is unfavorable from the point of view of nutrition, health and weight control.
As a whole, it is necessary to consume 6-8 servings of cereals or derivatives to meet the dietary recommendations (55% carbohydrates) and if half of these are made with whole products, the needs of dietary fiber will be met. However, the consumption of this food, due to mistaken considerations, is becoming increasingly low, which contributes to harm the nutritional situation and weight control of the population.
The consumption of bread contributes to approximate the diet to the theoretical ideal. The consumption of cereals is the one that shows greater distance with respect to the one advised, for the different groups of foods. In addition, increasing the consumption of bread can help to approximate the caloric profile to the recommended one (substituting part of the calories contributed by fats and proteins with those derived from carbohydrates), facilitating the fulfillment of other nutritional objectives.