10 Ways Sprouted Bread Is More Nutritious
From the new Canada Food Guide1 to the USDA’s MyPlate2, experts agree whole grains are good for you. Sprouted grains are whole grains by definition—which means the answer to the question, “Is sprouted bread healthy?” is a resounding “Yes!” (And that answer is equally true for the question, “Is Silver Hills bread healthy?”).
But let’s go a step further and answer the next logical question: “Is sprouted bread better for you?” And why sprouted bread is indeed a deliciously healthy choice for you and your family.
Here are 10 Ways Sprouted Bread is More Nutritious and an easy-to-add, better-for-you option you can feel good about any meal of the week:
- Sprouting whole grains breaks down antinutrients like phytate that protect vitamins and minerals stored in every seed. And that unlocks important nutrients like iron, magnesium, zinc, phosphorous, and B vitamins, so you get better-for-you nutrition in every bite!3
- Every seed stores proteins and starches to fuel a new plant as it starts to grow. When whole grains sprout, enzymes break down proteins into amino acids and starches into simpler carbohydrates the plant can use—and these happen to be easier for people to use, too! 3
- Other antinutrients—trypsin inhibitors4 and tannins5—also make the proteins in whole grains harder to digest. Just like phytate, sprouting breaks these down so you get more nutrition you can use when you choose sprouted whole grain bread.
- Sprouting doesn’t just unlock vitamins and minerals or make protein and starches easier to digest. It also changes the amount and type of fibre in whole grains. So you can enjoy the satisfying and digestion-supporting benefits of whole grains even more! 5
- Speaking of fibre, sprouting brings out the prebiotic benefits of the fibre in whole grains. Prebiotic fibre supports friendly bacteria in your digestive system, making sprouted whole grains even more gut-friendly6.
- Because conventional processing removes nutrients, refined white flour in Canada must be enriched with added B vitamins (thiamine, riboflavin, niacin), folic acid, and iron7. Sprouted whole grain wheat has a higher folate content than non-sprouted wheat, so you get folate from the grain itself8.
- Sprouting increases antioxidant activity and polyphenol content in whole grains9, and increases beta carotene, vitamin C, and vitamin E in wheat3. (That’s a good thing, because antioxidants help protect against the adverse effects of free radicals in your body).
- Because sprouting breaks starches into simpler carbohydrates, sprouting brings out the natural sweetness in whole grains. That means sprouted whole grain breads can be made with less added sugar than conventional breads10. And some studies suggest sprouted whole grains may have a lower impact on glycemic response than their unsprouted whole grain counterparts11.
- Sprouting reduces gluten content in whole grains5. While sprouted wheat still contains gluten well above levels considered safe for people with celiac disease, some people find sprouted whole wheat breads easier to digest.
- The sprouting process changes phenols, flavonoids, and other natural compounds that give foods their flavour12—and this makes them all the more tasty! Sprouted whole grain breads are prized for their subtle sweetness and complex flavour profile. Between all that extra deliciousness and the range of delightfully rich textures possible in breads baked from a variety of sprouted grains and seeds, the experience alone can inspire you and your family to eat more healthy whole grains. And get all the nutritional and health benefits that come with filling your daily menu with high-fibre, nutrient-rich whole grain goodness.
If you’re trying to eat better bread, why not get more nutritional bang for your buck by choosing sprouted breads? And if the first nine points on this list aren’t inspiration enough to try better-for-you sprouted whole grain breads, try them for number ten—simply because they make the best grilled sandwiches you’ll ever eat.
Learn more about sprouted whole grains
Explore the science and art of sprouting to learn why sprouted whole grain bread is a better-for-you choice for your family. Get recipes, tips—and a sprouting STEM activity for kids, too! Get your FREE Why Sprouted Handbook today.
1 Government of Canada, Canada’s Food Guide – Eat Whole Grain Foods. 2019. Available from: https://food-guide.canada.ca/en/healthy-eatingrecommendations/make-it-a-habit-to-eat-vegetables-fruit-whole-grains-and-protein-foods/eat-whole-grain-foods/, accessed August 7, 2020.
2 USDA, US Department of Health & Human Services, and Dietaryguidelines.gov, Dietary Guidelines for Americans, Eighth Edition. 2015 – 2020. Available from: https://health.gov/sites/default/files/2019-09/2015-2020_Dietary_Guidelines.pdf, accessed August 7, 2020.
3 Benincasa P., Falcinelli B., Lutts S., Stagnari F., Galieni A.. Sprouted Grains: A Comprehensive Review. Nutrients. 2019; 11(2):421.. Available from: https://www.mdpi.com/2072-6643/11/2/421/htm, accessed December 4, 2019.
4 Nkhata, S.G., Ayua, E., Kamau, E.H., Shingiro, J.-B., Fermentation and Germination Improve Nutritional Value of Cereals and Legumes Through Activation of Endogenous Enzymes. Food Science & Nutrition, 2018:6:2446-2458, September 21, 2018. Available from: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1002/fsn3.846, accessed December 4, 2019.
5 Lemmens, E., Moroni, A., Pagand, J., Heiraut, P., Ritala, A., Karlen, Y., Le, K.A., Van den Broeck, H., Brouns, F., De Brier, N., Delcour, J., Impact of Cereal Seed Sprouting on Its Nutritional and Technological Properties: A Critical Review. Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety, 12 Dec. 2018. Available from: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/1541-4337.12414, accessed December 4, 2019.
6 Jribi, S., Antal, O.T., Fustos, Z., Papai, G., Naar, Z., Kheriji, O, Debbabi, H., Influence Of Sprouting Bioprocess On Durum Wheat (Triticum Durum) Prebiotic Properties. Options Méditerranéennes, A 124, 2020 – Research and innovation as tools for sustainable agriculture, food and nutrition security. MEDFORUM 2018. Bari, Italy, September 18-20 2018, Extended abstracts and papers. Available from: https://om.ciheam.org/om/pdf/a124/00007806.pdf, accessed August 11, 2020.
7 Canada Food Inspection Agency, Labelling and composition requirements for grain and bakery products. May 16, 2019. Available from: https://www.inspection.gc.ca/food-label-requirements/labelling/industry/grain-and-bakery-products/eng/1392135900214/1392135960867?chap=0#c6 , accessed September 24, 2020.
8 Hefni, M., and Witthöft, C.M., Enhancement Of The Folate Content In Egyptian Pita Bread. Food & Nutrition Research vol. 56 (2012): 10.3402/fnr.v56i0.5566. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3321255/pdf/FNR-56-5566.pdf, accessed August 11, 2020.
9 Žilić, S., Basić, Z., Šukalović, V., Maksimović, V., Jankovic, M., Filipović, M., Can The Sprouting Process Applied To Wheat Improve The Contents Of Vitamins And Phenolic Compounds And Antioxidant Capacity Of The Flour?. International Journal of Food Science & Technology. 49. 1040-1047 10.1111/ijfs.12397, 2014. Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/260802955_Can_the_sprouting_process_applied_to_wheat_improve_the_contents_of_vitamins_and_phenolic_compounds_and_antioxidant_capacity_of_the_flour, accessed June 17, 2020.
10 Ding, J., Feng, H., Controlled germination for enhancing the nutritional value of sprouted grains. In Sprouted Grains: Nutritional Value, Production, and Applications (pp. 91–105). AACC International via Elsevier, 2019. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-811525-1.00006-3 , accessed August 11, 2020.
11 Nelson, K., Stojanovska, L., Vasiljevic, T., Mathai, M., Germinated Grains: A Superior Whole Grain Functional Food? Canadian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology, 2013, 91:429-441. Available from: https://www.nrcresearchpress.com/doi/full/10.1139/cjpp-2012-0351, accessed December 4, 2019.
12 Finnie, S., Brovelli, V., & Nelson, D., Sprouted grains as a food ingredient. In Sprouted Grains: Nutritional Value, Production, and Applications (pp. 113–142). AACC International via Elsevier, 2019. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-811525-1.00006-3 , accessed August 11, 2020.
Beyond 101: Read Our Top Articles on Sprouted Whole Grains
Take your learning of sprouted whole grains to the next level. We’ve curated our best articles to help you understand how supporting your health and wellness can start with something as small as choosing a slice of sprouted bread for your morning toast or lunchtime sandwich.