Bread and Health

 

Bread is an important foodstuff in everyday life. A healthy, balanced diet is the foundation of good health, and bread is part of a healthy lifestyle, but the consumption of bread has been declining across the EU in the recent years.

 

Bread contributes to healthy eating habits. Apart from its affordable aspect, the foodstuff has a healthy nutritional content like minerals, vitamins and fibres that is a benefit for both children and adults. Bread does not contain sugar and fat, but complex carbohydrates. In a healthy, balanced diet, carbohydrates should make up around 60 percent of the total energy intake.

Consumption of some kinds of bread helps prevent metabolic diseases, such as metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. Also bread contains most of the essential nutrients for life : carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins (A, B1, B2, Niacin, Folic Acid, …) and minerals (calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, iodine, iron and zinc). Depending on its fibre content, bread may help regulate intestinal transit and prevent colon cancer. It is also especially recommended by cardiologists as a main component of any heart-healthy diet, its consumption helps reducing the blood urea level, to strengthen the nervous system (because of vitamin B1) and to fortify the muscles, thus making it especially suitable for sportsmen, children and elders.

 

Eating bread is an everyday life pleasure. With butter, jam or honey, bread means happiness. The multiplicity and variety of bread also gives us the opportunity to eat it in many occasions. Why does it mean happiness only with butter, jam or honey? Actually, bread complements most of the foodstuffs: chocolate, ham, cheese, cold meat, eggs, foie … you can prepare a sandwich with almost everything!

The reasons for the bread consumption decrease are many. It is mainly due to changes in our eating and living habits. Less and less people have for example a breakfast in the morning.

Bread contributes to a healthy lifestyle. Our body needs complex carbohydrates for the energy metabolism. Bread is a tool to improve our energetic demand. This foodstuff also contributes to keep performing our cognitive functions. The brain represents only 2% of the body weight, but its energetic needs are incredibly high (20%).

 

Bread enhances our food equilibrium and it has a place in slimming diets. Some people think that eating it make us take weight, but this is false. Even though after eating bread there is a satiate feeling, it brings us a high rate of complex carbohydrate, that the fatty food does not have.