10 superfood whole grains to incorporate into your diet

Grains are among the staple foods consumed in most households globally. A grain is classified as a 'whole grain' if it contains the three vital parts of a seed, the endosperm, germ, and bran. The endosperm is packed with starchy carbohydrates, while the germ and bran boast a rich composition of different nutrients.

Typically, whole grains are superfoods rich in antioxidants, dietary fiber, B vitamins, phosphorus, manganese, magnesium, and iron, among other vital nutrients (1).

Whole grains have numerous health benefits to the body, for example, they reduce the risk of cancer, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease, and aid in weight loss, to mention a few (2, 3, 4, 5).

In this article, we'll look at the top 10 superfood whole grains you should include in your diet. Let's dive in!

 

1. Whole oats

Whole oats are among the superfood whole grains that provide your body with a significant amount of minerals and vitamins. They are packed with fiber and are gluten-free. Oats also contain antioxidants such as avenanthramide, associated with regulating blood pressure and reducing colon cancer risk (6).

Oats also aid in nutrient absorption and digestion because they contain a soluble fiber known as beta-glucans. This fiber is also known to lower total cholesterol and bad cholesterol in the body (7).

 

2. Whole wheat

Though whole wheat contains gluten, it's a superfood that has many health benefits. It's the primary ingredient in semolina, bulgur, couscous, noodles, pasta, among other wheat products.

If you can tolerate gluten, whole wheat can be a great source of dietary fiber, minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants.

 

3. Whole-grain rye

Compared to whole wheat, rye has a higher nutritional composition. Whole-grain rye contains fewer carbs but more minerals, which explains why it's good at regulating your blood glucose levels (8, 9).

The dietary fiber content of rye is incredibly high. 100 grams (3.5 ounces) of rye flour serving contains 22.6 grams of dietary fiber. This is about 90% of DV (Daily Value) for adults (8).

 

4. Buckwheat

Buckwheat is another superfood whole grain that should be part of your diet. Buckwheat is a pseudocereal, meaning it's not derived from cereal grasses, but you can use it the same way you use other whole grains.

This superfood is naturally gluten-free and provides your body with fiber, B vitamins, phosphorus, iron, manganese, copper, and magnesium (10).

 

5. Bulgur wheat

Also known as cracked wheat, bulgur wheat is packed with various minerals, including iron, manganese, and magnesium, among others.

You can add bulgur wheat to salads, stuffed vegetables, and soups. You can also prepare it the same way you prepare rice, though it's textured like couscous.

Bulgur is an excellent source of fiber. It provides 33% or 8.2g of the Daily Value per 182g (cooked cup) (11).

 

6. Millet

Millet is one of the most nutritious superfood whole grains you can get in a food store. This whole grain is packed with fiber, B vitamins, potassium, manganese, iron, magnesium, zinc, and fiber. 

Millet is gluten-free and has many benefits, including controlling blood sugar, lowering blood triglycerides, and reducing inflammation (12, 13, 14).

 

7. Whole barley

The list of superfood whole grains can't be complete without including whole barley, specifically hulled barley. This superfood is incredibly healthy. It's packed with minerals such as magnesium, selenium, fiber, B vitamins, zinc, manganese, copper, phosphorus, iron, and potassium (15).

It's also worth mentioning that 148 grams (one cup) of cooked hulled barley provides approximately 60% or 14.9 grams of DV (16).

 

8. Spelt

Like many of the superfood whole grains mentioned in this list, spelt is high in zinc, B vitamins, iron, fiber, manganese, phosphorus, and magnesium. However, it contains more protein and zinc than wheat (17).

Spelt also contains phytic acid and other antinutrients, which reduce the absorption of iron and zinc from the gut. However, this shouldn't be a concern if you are an adult because you can get these nutrients from other sources.

 

9. Quinoa whole grain

Quinoa is another superfood that contains fiber, healthy fats, protein, minerals, and vitamins. This whole grain is an excellent source of kaempferol, quercetin, and other antioxidants, which help neutralize harmful free radicals. Free radicals are dangerous molecules associated with chronic diseases like cancer, heart disease, and chronic inflammation (18, 19).

 

10. Brown rice

Like many other whole grains, brown rice is also gluten-free. It contains antioxidants, minerals, vitamins, and dietary fiber. Just 100 grams (3.5 ounces) of brown rice contain 1.8 grams of dietary fiber. This is much higher than what the same amount of white rice contains. 3.5 grams of white rice contains only 0.6 grams of dietary fiber (20, 21).

 

Bottom Line

Adding the above superfood whole grains into your diet will add a new twist to your mealtimes and improve your general health.

You can combine these whole grains with healthy, delicious drinks. If you aren't sure of the healthy drinks to consume, visit Vitapod. We pride ourselves in offering a wide selection of delicious, zero sugar drinks enriched with essential minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants to give you a healthier you.

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