Be a Smarter Shopper
The BakeryHow to shop
- For a healthy loaf of bread, check ingredients lists and nutrition-facts labels. Don't rely just on color or product names. "Words like multigrain or hearty can be misleading," say Newgent. "Look for whole-grain or whole-wheat flour as the first ingredient. Wheat flour and enriched white flour don't contain the bran of the wheat kernel, Look for wholegrain or whole-wheat flour as the first ingredient. Then check for fiber content. which holds essential nutrients." Next, check for fiber content. Newgent suggests choosing bread that contains three or more grams per slice.
- Avoid baked goods that contain partially hydrogenated oils, which signal the presence of trans fatty acids. They act like saturated fat in the body, increasing your risk of heart disease.
- Beware of freshly baked loaves. "It's difficult to tell if the baker used whole-grain flour," warns Newgent. "If an ingredients list is provided, read it carefully, and don't be afraid to quiz the salesperson." As a last resort, buy a loaf that contains nuts and seeds for the added nutritional benefit.
- Keep in the freezer to slow mold growth. Most packaged breads will last as long as three weeks, but whole-grain pita bread and English muffins will stay fresh for only about five days. Keep an eye on freshness dates for more guidance. Freeze freshly baked wholegrain breads that contain nuts and seeds, which deteriorate quickly.
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