The Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Agriculture single out whole-grain foods, recommending that half of one’s daily food grain servings should be whole grain.

What is a whole-grain? A whole grain is just that, the whole kernel of the wheat, rye, oat, barley, corn, rice or other grain. All kernels have three parts: the bran, the endosperm and the germ. The bran is the high-fiber outer coating of the grain kernel that gives whole grains their darker color. The endosperm is the starchy center of the kernel. The germ contains vitamins, minerals and other important nutrients.

High-fiber foods are not the same thing as whole-grain foods. Looking at fiber alone does not tel you if a food is made from whole grains. Read the ingredient list carefully, focusing on products with 100% whole in their names, whole wheat, brown rice, whole-grain oats or corn. Manufacturers pay for the use of the Whole Grains Council stamp that appears on thousands on products. The stamp lists the total amount of whole grain per serving. Your goal should be at least 48 grams of whole grains per day, which is the equivalent of three servings of 100% whole-grain foods.

Need another reason to eat whole-grains? Research suggests that eating foods made with whole-grains improves the body’s response to insulin. This is extremely important because people with type 2 diabetes usually have poor sensitivity to insulin. Studies show that even just one serving of whole-grain foods a day helps insulin levels.

How do you increase your daily whole-grain intake? It is easy. Just make simple food swaps: eat 100% whole-wheat bread instead of white bread, eat brown rice instead of white rice, eat whole-wheat spaghetti instead of regular spaghetti, eat whole-grain cereal instead of regular cereal OR eat oatmeal instead of farina.

Good Luck incorporating more whole-grains into your lifestyle! Please feel free to contact us at for more personalized nutrition advice.

Author's Bio: 

Rachel Lerner is a certified nutritional consultant and fitness nutrition coach. Rachel’s passion for health and healing combined with her knowledge and expertise in nutrition inspired her to create Personal Web Nutrition, a company that designs custom online and in-person nutrition services. Personal Web Nutrition offers tailored nutrition services to individuals and businesses. Rachel creates nutritious, delicious and personal plans and programs tailored to help her clients with a variety of specific concerns that range from weight loss, food intolerances, proper sports nutrition, increasing energy or simply improving overall well-being. Personal Web Nutrition's custom services provide an opportunity to make positive changes in your eating habits without compromising taste.