‘If you eat dough you’ll end up looking like it”
Some good things have happened since sliced bread yet still people insist on making it a daily staple in their diet. Before you tuck into your next slice of toast read on to make sure you understand exactly what is going inside your tum.
I’m yet to meet a person who doesn’t love freshly baked bread. We love bread but sadly bread doesn’t love us, nor many people in fact! And you certainly don’t ‘need’ it in your diet. There are ways to replace it with healthier options and even more reasons why you should.
The main issue with bread today is how we make it. We no longer eat homemade, hand kneaded loaves with fresh yeast and organic flour. Shop brought bread contains stacks of additives and preservatives to make it last longer than it should and suit our busy lifestyles.
If you look back across the history you will see that bread and other wheat products became a huge part of our diets largely through convenience and the rise of huge food manufacturers. During the war was it was cheap and accessible, post war food marketing made it fashionable. As a result bread and other cereal products now play a huge role in modern day diets, yet our bodies were never designed to take on such a huge load of refined grains.
The food industry have also looked to find more profitable ways of making bread and spent years developing methods of making a little go a long way, continually refining the wheat over generations. The result are light, fluffy, long lasting loaves which look nothing like bread did years ago.
The main issue with wheat products is gluten. Gluten literally acts likes glue when it’s hits your digestive system, destroying the tiny villi on the intestinal wall responsible for the absoprtion of nutrients. Our bodies can deal with a little but wheat today contains 50% more gluten than the wheat consumed 50 years ago. Remember we are not just talking about bread, there is also pizza, pasta, wraps, bagels, cereals, crackers and even soy sauce!
If you are gluten sensitive (after years of eating cereal for breakfast, a sandwich for lunch and pasta for dinner most people are) then digestive issues are a given. If your stomach balloons after every meal eliminate wheat/gluten for two weeks and you will see a difference (although probably have to stand again on the tube as a result!)
Even more significant is the fact that 70-80% of your immune system is based in your gut. So if you often suffer from colds, virus’s or inflammatory diseases like joint pains the last thing you should do is compromise your digestive system by filling it with glue.
Furthermore, gluten prevents the absorption of mineral such as zinc. Studies estimate 1 in 3 adults in the UK are now zinc deficient. Check your nails for small white marks as an indicator. Zinc is essential to so many metabolic processes including protein synthesis, reproductive heath and immune function. Many common skin disorders like acne and eczema have been linked to zinc deficiency. And zinc is essential in maintaining healthy testosterone levels.
If you do love bread and want to see real bread making in action head to E5 bakehouse and indulge in a Sourdough loaf, it’s worth going along just to see these guys in action (although most of it is done through the night). Sourdough culture is an age old tradition which is what bread should be about. And at Fitter London we are busy developing alternatives including a sweet potato loaf so that you can still dunk a big door stop into your soup once in a while.