What Is Special About Sourdough Breads Health Benefits
All bread is different. What grains are used, how the grains are processed, and the way the dough is prepared and baked all can affect the composition of bread products, and in turn, how they are metabolized in our bodies. This can affect how fast the bread moves through our digestive system once we eat it, and the way our body breaks down and absorbs the starches.
With sourdough, the grain, oftentimes wheat, is fermented with lactic acid bacteria and wild yeasts. In this process, the grain is metabolized by the bacteria and lactic acid is produced. Sourdough has reduced simple sugar content and high levels of lactic acid, which makes it unique from other types of bread.
If you have celiac disease or are gluten-insensitive, you know that bread can be a challenge. Get a gluten-free sourdough bread recipe here from Gluten Free & More magazine.
Understanding The Gi Of Different Breads
When trying to choose between different types of breads, it can help to pay attention to the glycaemic index, the kilojoules, carbohydrates and fibre. Try to choose a product that has a lower GI, and is lower in kilojoules and carbohydrates, while being higher in fibre.
The glycaemic index helps guide us on how carbohydrate-rich food may affect our blood sugar levels. Low GI foods are considered slow release foods and have a GI of less than 55. Intermediate GI foods have a GI value of between 56 and 69. High GI foods are considered fast release carbohydrates and have a GI value of above 70 they are likely to cause blood sugar levels to rise quickly.
According to the South African Glycaemic Index and Load Guide , its best to eat low GI foods most of the time and keep intermediate and high GI foods for exercise. Some products have Diabetes South Africa and/or Glycaemic Index Foundation of South Africa endorsement logos on their labels, which can help guide you on how to fit the product into your diet.
Of course, if youre eating a low carb diet then all kinds of bread are off the menu many people with diabetes have found that a low carb diet contributes to more stable blood sugar, so have given up bread.
Low Carb Breads At Local Stores
These can be harder to find, but since low carb is becoming more popular, if you look around there are more options available.
For instance, in the US and Canada, Walmart sells ThinSlim Foods Love-the-Taste Low Carb Bread Plain, 2pack and Josephs Bakery Mini Pita Bread, both of which are 7 grams carbs per slice/bread.
In the UK, Tescon sells Hovis Lower Carb Seeded Bread, which is around 9 grams carbs per slice a little bit lower than regular bread.
In Australia, Aldi sells an 85% lower carb bread, which is just 5 grams per slice.
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Garlic And Ciabatta Bread
Serve with your favourite Italian dishes, and try to buy ready sliced so you can control your portion sizes and freeze the rest. This way, you wont be too tempted to polish off the whole loaf. Look out for reduced-fat garlic bread, but bear in mind it’s still fairly high in fat and calories.
- Garlic bread: 71Kcal 9.4g carbs 3g fat
- Reduced-fat garlic bread: 54Kcal 8.98g carbs 1.2g fat
- Ciabatta: 75Kcal 12.4g carbs 1.4g fat
How To Make Diabetes
The key to make any dish diabetes-friendly, including this sourdough French toast, is to think about balancing your plate. Most French toast recipes are higher in sugar and carbohydrates and donât include additions such as fruit, protein or plant based fat.
In the recipe below, we use frozen fruit and peanut butter instead of syrup. Frozen berries and peanut butter provide an extra boost of protein, fiber and deliciousness.
We also use two of my favorite TruviaÂ® products. Instead of regular sugar and powdered sugar, I decided to use TruviaÂ® Sweet Completeâ¢ All-Purpose Sweetener and TruviaÂ® Confectioners Sweetener.
TruviaÂ® Sweet Completeâ¢ All-Purpose Sweetener bakes and browns in recipes and sweetens and measures like sugar. I added some to the mixture we soaked our bread in to help our sourdough French toast get that classic golden-brown crisp on the outsideâ¦without adding any additional sugar.
And you canât have French toast without a little powdered goodness on top, and TruviaÂ® Confectioners Sweetener allows us to still enjoy that classic powdered sweetness without adding sugar.
Make sure to check out these other recipes using TruviaÂ® sweeteners:
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The Final Word On Sourdough And Diabetes
I know that diabetic diets can seem bland, dry, and tasteless. That is the whole reason I embarked on a mission to find better food options. We all eat several times throughout the day so we may as well enjoy it. There is no need to compromise on flavor when making healthy choices.
Sourdough provides many benefits to the diabetic individual. For those who have trouble cutting out carbohydrates, this alternative can be a good substitute to other bread. The higher fiber count is also good for your long intestine too.
I hope this gives you a better understanding of how this unique staple can be a positive food choice for you. Be sure to check the labels of anything you buy at a grocery store to make sure that you know what you are getting.
And remember, having diabetes does not mean an end to enjoying food. You just need to be smart about it. Do your research, find out what is right, and go from there.
*This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding your medical condition.
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Are there different kinds of diabetes?
Certainly. But the basic features of the disease are same. In any form of diabetes there is some underlying reason why your body is not able to utilize glucose for energy, and that causes the levels of glucose in your blood build up above normal. There are three areas that are important for you to understand in diabetes. First, the cells in your body which use the glucose are important as they must be able to remove sugar from the blood and put it inside the cell as a fuel. Secondly, the insulin which is made by your pancreas is important to allow the sugar to enter the cell , and lastly, glucose which is broken down from your food or from muscle and liver from a storage form of glucose called glycogen. Now if you think of the disease diabetes as involving a locking gas cap on your car, it will be easier to understand.
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How To Store Sourdough Bread
If you have baked a larger batch of sourdough bread, you can store the excess loaf to be used later.
The usual shelf life of sourdough bread is about 5 days. You can improve the shelf life by storing it in a correct way as mentioned beneath:
- Cool Sourdough bread thoroughly before storing it. Once it cools, you can place it in a breadbox or plastic storage bag and store at room temperature. Alternatively, you can wrap it in foil.
- Store sourdough bread at a cool and dry place away from excessive moisture or heat.
- Avoid storing Sourdough bread in a refrigerator as it may cause the bread to dry out and lose its flavors.
- If you must refrigerate your sourdough bread for reasons like lack of storage space or extremely hot and humid room conditions, use it up within 2 to 3 days.
- You can also opt to store sourdough bread in a freezer. You can store the entire loaf as a whole or slice it before storing. Wrap it tightly with plastic freezer wrap or aluminium foil or keep it in a freezer bag before storing in a freezer. If properly stored, Sourdough bread will maintain its quality for about three months. Though it may start losing its texture and flavors thereafter, it will still remain safe for consumption for a few more months provided it has been frozen continuously at 0°F.
- Discard the stored sourdough bread if mold appears on its surface, or it has an off smell or appearance.
How To Choose A Good Sourdough Bread
I have shown that no two breads are alike when considering their Glycemic Index, fermentation processes, or fiber counts. But this can also be said when comparing different kinds of sourdough as well.
In order to get the benefits of the long fermentation process, it must rely solely on the starter to get the right balance of acids. Commercial producers often cheat on this process. They add bakers yeast to the culture. While there is enough of the starter to give it a unique taste, it does not offer the same health benefits.
Check the ingredient label of anything you buy at a grocery store. Make sure that there are no hidden ingredients that should not be there.
True sourdough should consist of only flour, salt, and water. Anything else is just filler that detracts from the real deal. This may mean that you have to make your purchases at a local baker and not at a large grocery store.
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But Why Sourdough What Are Some Sourdough Bread Benefits
Sourdough bread has risen in popularity in recent years, and especially during 2020 when many people took to trying to make their own sourdough starters at home during quarantine.
Sourdough bread is comparable in nutrients to yeast-leavened bread and it may even allow for better mineral absorption due to the additional reduction of phytates in the sourdough bread versus a traditional yeast bread.
Why Is Sourdough Supreme
According to Graham, it is likely that the fermentation of the sourdough changes the nature of the starches in the bread, creating a more beneficial bread.
Why did whole wheat score so poorly? Graham explains that the less positive blood responses sparked by the whole wheat are likely due to the fact that the milling process involved in making the whole wheat bread is similar to that used for white bread.
He explains, The parts of the grain like wheat germ and bran that have the health benefits are taken out to create white flour and then partially added back in to make whole wheat.
However, before you swear off your favorite whole wheat loaf, Graham says that not all whole wheat or whole grain breads are made this way.
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Control Blood Sugar Levels
Controlling blood sugar levels is important for everyone, especially people with type 2 diabetes and those unable to produce enough insulin, the hormone that regulates blood sugar.
Rye bread has several qualities that can help control blood sugar. For starters, it is high in soluble fibre, which helps slow the digestion and absorption of carbohydrates and sugar through the digestive tract, leading to a more gradual rise in blood sugar levels.
Rye bread also contains phenolic compounds, such as ferulic acid and caffeic acid, which can slow the release of sugar and insulin into the bloodstream, further helping to control blood sugar levels. For example, a study involving 21 healthy adults found that eating a rye-based evening meal with added resistant starch helped slow the release of sugar and insulin into the bloodstream. It raised levels of satiety hormones, so people stayed full longer
However, plain rye had no significant effect on blood sugar levels, although it increases feelings of satiety
What Are The Potential Health Benefits Of Eating Rye Bread
Introducing rye bread to your diet can help with a variety of health conditions. Everyone, especially people with type 2 diabetes, where the body can not respond well to insulin, needs to keep their blood sugar under control. For people with diabetes, not getting correct treatment for low or high blood sugar levels can be dangerous and lead to health complications.
Rye bread includes a number of properties that can help with blood sugar regulation. For starters, it’s strong in soluble fiber, which helps reduce carbohydrate digestion and absorption through the digestive tract, resulting in a more gradual rise in blood sugar levels. Rye bread also includes phenolic chemicals including ferulic acid and caffeic acid, which may help manage blood sugar by slowing the release of glucose and insulin into the bloodstream.
When it comes to making a health-conscious choice for people with diabetes, choosing food with a lower impact on your blood sugar levels will ensure you have more energy and could help your efforts to lose weight. When compared to other grain products, the glycemic index of rye bread is generally moderate. The Glycemic index of rye brad can vary between 56 and 69.
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How many slices of bread can a diabetic eat per day?
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Sourdough Has Staying Power
Graham and a team of researchers examined how participants responded just hours after eating the bread for breakfast and again just hours after eating a standard lunch.
With the sourdough, the subjects blood sugar levels were lower for a similar rise in blood insulin, says Graham, whose findings are to be published in the British Journal of Nutrition.
He continues, What was even more interesting was that this positive effect remained during their second meal and lasted even hours after. This shows that what you have for breakfast influences how your body will respond to lunch.
Portion Control Is Essential
Remember that different grains are also used for making bread. The more commonly used grains in our commercial breads are wheat and rye. The grains used, the fibre content of the dough, and how the dough was prepared and baked all influence how the bread breaks down and how we absorb the starches. Sourdough bread and breads that are higher in fibre typically have a lower glycaemic index than standard commercial bread. What does that mean? The answer to: Is sourdough bread better for diabetics? is a yes!
Remember, though, that portion control is so important. One to two slices is the max portion for bread. Take a look at our Diabetes Food Guide for advice on portion control, and check your blood sugar after eating anything new to see how it affects you. Everyone is different, and even if sourdough bread is better for diabetics that doesnt mean it will work for you.
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Is Sourdough Bread Good For Diabetics
Sourdough bread is a very popular type of product that is used in many different meals. However, few diabetics thought that this type of bread was good for them. After all, sourdough bread is created from white flour which is known to have a spiking effect on blood sugar. However, sourdough bread does not have this particular quality and the effect on the blood sugar is mild to say the least.
Should I Eat Sourdough Bread If I Eat A Low Gi Diet
Definitely! Sourdough bread is great for people who eat a low GI diet. Sourdough bread has a lower GI than the usual white bread, its also a great source of fibre, B vitamins, and minerals. If youre diagnosed with diabetes or youre just trying to reduce the risk, its best to have sourdough bread instead of standard sliced white bread.
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The Importance Of Wholegrains And Fibre
Bread is often seen as a food to avoid, not just for people with diabetes, but for people trying to lose weight or follow a gluten-free diet. One of the concerns for Elisabeth though is that, as a nutrition practitioner, she sees that eliminating bread from your diet may, for some, also be removing a potentially good and readily available source of fibre. The importance of fibre to promote a healthy digestive system has long been known. But recent research identified from the Sourdough School research team has shown that insoluble fibre, which is found in breads made from wholegrain flours, is important in promoting a healthy gut microbiota. Having a diverse and healthy community of microbes in our gut can have a number of positive effects on our own health. Insoluble fibre provides food for these microbes and they, in turn, aid our digestive process and have been found to support a healthy immune system.
Best Bread Brands For Diabetes
As youâd expect, there are many bread brands that offer diabetes-friendly options. Weâll cover which ones are my favorites below. Many brands have options that are perfect for people with diabetes, while also having options that arenât so great. Itâs not really about the brand, but more about the individual qualities of each variety.
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Gi Of South African Breads
The South African Glycaemic Index and Load Guide by Gabi Steenkamp and Liesbet Delport has a comprehensive table on nearly all of the breads available and their nutritional composition. This book can be ordered directly from GIFSA or from a dietician. The table below indicates the GI and nutritional composition of some of the most common breads in South African stores.
The foods in the table are listed from lowest GI to highest GI. The Artisan Bakers sourdough bread has the lowest GI in the table above, but its highest in carbohydrates and fairly low in fibre. Albany low GI Ultima kJ controlled brown bread has a slightly higher GI, less kJ and more fibre. Blue Ribbon low GI Brown Plus high fibre bread is still low GI but has more fibre than most other breads. Interestingly, some rye breads are low GI and others are intermediate GI. One would think that nutty wheat, whole wheat and brown bread would be low GI but according to the South African Glycaemic Index and Load Guide, they fall into the high GI category.
It is important to note that the GI classification is not to label the food as good or bad. By knowing the GI of different foods, you can put together a lower GI meal by balancing lower and higher GI foods, with lean protein and healthy fats in the right portion sizes. Heres more information on low GI food.