Recent news suggesting that bread products, especially newer varieties, are not a healthy food choice flies in the face of official National Dietary Guidelines for Australians and is causing concern for many of Australia's top nutrition organisations.
Leading Sydney nutritionist, Trish Griffiths, said the consumption of more bread, not less, for the promotion of good health and prevention of a number of diseases is supported and promoted through the official Dietary Guidelines for Australians.
"Breads, grains and legumes are at the base of the healthy food pyramid and, as such, are the foods we should be eating most of in our daily diet," Ms Griffiths said.
"Any suggestion that bread and grain products are not healthy is contrary to the vast pool of international peer-reviewed research and dietary study evidence available in the world's leading scientific and nutrition research journals.
"The evidence shows that, if anything, we actually need to be eating more grain-based foods - not less - to reach even the minimum targets set out in the National Dietary Guidelines."
The many varieties of bread available - from traditional white, wholemeal or mixed grain, to those with added fibre, folate, omega-3 fats and phytoestrogens - means there is a style of bread to suit everyone's needs and preferences.
Mixed grain and wholemeal varieties contain naturally occurring antioxidants and other components associated with good health. Foods made from grains, such as bread, are also the leading source of fibre in the Australian diet.
Ms Griffiths, manager of the Go Grains Health and Nutrition* the leading advisor for grain foods in human health, said bread is typically low in fat, with no cholesterol, making it an excellent choice for people watching their weight.
"When eaten regularly, the scientific evidence shows that wholegrain foods can lower the risk of two of our major health problems, heart disease and diabetes, by between 20% and 40%," she said. "This represents an impact on heart disease equal to the best cholesterol-lowering drugs currently available."*Go Grains Health & Nutrition
provides scientifically based information on the nutrition and health benefits of grains to consumers, health professionals, teachers and the media. For more information, visit: www.gograins.com.au