Bread lovers, breathe a sigh of relief: a new, lower-carb option may take the fear and self-loathing out of bread consumption.
No longer shall you have to hide in the shadows, eating your tasty and filling bread in secret shame! And while many have decreed the humble slice of bread to be public enemy No.1, leading Sydney dietitian, nutritionist and author Susie Burrell (pictured) says this is simply not the case.
In short, healthy, active people need carbohydrates to fuel their body for life and exercise. What’s more, eradicating bread from your diet can be a needless form of dieting self-sabotage. Susie, who’s a Helga’s Lower Carb bread ambassador, is recommending we chow down on this new lower-wheat option, which contains nutritional seeds and 25 per cent less carbs than you would find in a standard mixed-grain loaf.
A loaf of this rich grain, lower-carb bread also contains 10g of protein, almost 5g of fibre and just 19-20g of total carbs per serve. “The nutritionals of this soft, tasty bread are very strong, one of the strongest profiles of all bread on the market and for this reason I was very happy to endorse this product,” Susie says.
“Bread has a lot of positive nutritional properties including being a good source of protein, fibre, and wholegrains and in the case of Helga’s, essential fats from all the seeds and grains.
“Turn your lunch-time salad into a nutritious and well-balanced meal by adding two slices of Helga’s Lower Carb and making it into a sandwich.”
Helga’s Lower Carb, $5.49 per 700g loaf, is available in three variants: Lower Carb 5 Seeds, Lower Carb Soy and Toasted Sesame and Lower Carb Sunflower and Golden Linseed.
So, why should we not fear this new lower-carb bread? And why do some health professionals want us to ban all forms of bread (pictured) from our diets? “There are those who think they are doing well by choosing wraps or Turkish bread, only to find out that some of these breads can contain three-to-four times the amount of carbohydrates as traditional sliced bread,” Susie says.
“As a dietitian, I don’t see bread as good or bad, rather when developing meal plans I consider how much carbohydrate per serve the bread offers. Good nutrition is not about isolating individual types of food, rather considering the overall nutrient balance of the diet and the eating patterns and habits that complement this.
“If your GP tells you to cut bread from your diet, that’s just plain bad and lazy nutritional advice.”
Susie, who’s no fan of the paleo diet as spruiked by celebrity TV chef Pete Evans – which bans milk products, along with all grains and pulses – says wholegrains actually have much to offer us. “A less frequently mentioned benefit of including bread in the diet is the satisfaction factor,” she says.
“Chronic dieters will often describe skipping the bread with their lunch-time salad to avoid the ‘carbs’ only to find their blood glucose levels low and cravings out of control an hour or two later.
“Trust me, binge-eating rice crackers, chocolate and other sweet foods throughout the afternoon does far more damage to a diet than a slice or two of bread will ever do. In this instance the fear of eating bread tends to be a self-generated issue rather than a nutrition one.”
A good rule of thumb is the more active we are, the more carbs we will need to fuel the muscle, Susie says. Good carbs include 1-2 slices of lower-carb bread; pasta; fruit; brown rice, quinoa or other carb-rich foods. So, is it time to revaluate your relationship with bread? This new, lower-carb bread may well be a bread-lover’s hot ticket to better health and happiness.
What do you think? Would you eat lower-carb bread? Does bread deserve its bad rep as a deadly sin?
Tips via Susie Burrell