Many people favor whole wheat bread (or brown bread as you may know it) over white bread when they are eating to lose weight. This is generally due to brown bread being made from a whole wheat flour, which is less processed and high in fiber and a good recipe for increasing satiety. But is it all pseudoscience, or is there a (sorry) grain of truth in there?
While you have to prove a bread to bake it, science has proven which type of bread keeps us fuller for longer – and in turn, can help us lose weight. If you're interested in learning how to eat healthily, then you might be glad to hear that cutting out bread is not a requirement. In fact, it can actually help to promote weight loss.
In a recent study (opens in new tab), researchers from the Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden discovered that rye bread is the best bread you can consume for weight loss as opposed to plain brown bread.
The study recruited 242 overweight male and females between the ages of 30 and 70 and divided them into two focus groups. One group ate regular refined wheat bread (brown bread) while the other ate whole-grain rye products. They both consumed the same energy level from the foods.
Following a twelve week period the study concluded that both groups lost weight following the different diets, but the group who ate the whole-grain rye bread lost on average 2.2 pounds (1kg) and reduced their body fat by 0.54%. The scientists think that the high fiber content inside rye bread keeps individuals fuller for longer than those who eat the same amount of wheat bread.
Claire Barnes, a Nutritionist at Bio-Kult (opens in new tab) explained, "Fibre plays a key role in regulating our appetite, basically it helps keep us feeling fuller for longer, therefore reducing the need to snack. As fiber-rich foods tend to be low energy density, this means that you can eat larger amounts, with fewer calories."
Before offering us some expert nutritional advice on how to include more fiber in our diet, Barnes highlights that you should ensure to drink at least two liters of water a day while increasing your fiber intake for it to take effect on your diet. Get yourself a best water bottle to encourage you to drink a healthy volume of fluid day to day.
Here are three ways to include more fibre in your diet:
- Wholegrains - you should try to consider wheat alternatives such as brown rice, oats, spelt and rye. Also think about vegetables, fruits, peas, beans, pulses, nuts and seeds.
- Cook from scratch - using whole foods will provide more fiber than eating processed nutrient-depleted foods. You can make things like slow-cooked stews and soups full of, seasonal vegetables, add in some soaked beans or lentils to provide both fiber and protein and serve with spelt or rye sourdough bread.
- Choose organic vegetables - this means you can do away with the peeler in many circumstances for example, carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes and beetroot. Leaving the skin on will provide additional fiber as well as other nutrients.
Jessica is Staff Writer at Fit&Well. Her career in journalism began in local news and she holds a Masters in journalism. Jessica has previously written for Runners World, penning news and features on fitness, sportswear and nutrition.
When she isn't writing up news and features for Fit&Well covering topics ranging from muscle building, to yoga, to female health and so on, she will be outdoors somewhere, testing out the latest fitness equipment and accessories to help others find top products for their own fitness journeys. Her testing pairs up nicely with her love for running. She recently branched out to running 10Ks and is trying to improve her time before moving on to larger races. Jessica also enjoys building on her strength in the gym and is a believer in health and wellness beginning in the kitchen. She shares all of this on her running Instagram account @jessrunshere which she uses for accountability and for connecting with like-minded fitness lovers.
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