I always advise you to cut out sugars and reduce carbs (such as refined, white flour) to help keep your blood sugar under control. But with the holidays coming up, it can be quite a challenge to cut out grains completely.
But there’s some good news. According to a new study, eating certain types of grains won’t result in excess blood sugar. In fact, eating them may actually help reduce your risk of developing Type II diabetes.
This finding goes against the wildly popular Keto and Paleo diets, which cut out entire food groups and essentially demonize all grains. But as it turns out, certain grains can actually support healthy blood sugar — and overall good health — by introducing diversity to your GI tract.
How the right morning toast can reduce diabetes risk by 30 percent — or more
The new study involved nearly 55,000 participants, ages 50 to 65 at the outset, in the Danish Diet, Cancer, and Health cohort.
The researchers calculated the participants’ reported intake of whole grains (oats, rye, and wheat) in grams per day. Then, they divided the participants into four groups, based on how many grams of whole grains they reported eating daily.
Those with the highest consumption ate at least 50 grams of whole grains each day. (50 grams is equivalent to eating about one slice of rye bread and a large bowl of oatmeal, for example.)
Over the next 15 years, a little more than 7,400 participants developed Type II diabetes.
But the group with the highest daily whole grain intake developed the fewest cases in this follow-up period. Furthermore, the lower the daily whole grain consumption, the more likely it was the participants would develop Type II diabetes.
Overall, among men, there was an 11 percent lower risk of developing Type II diabetes for each 16-ounce serving of whole grains consumed daily. Among women, there was a 7 percent lower risk of developing the disease for each 16-ounce serving consumed daily.
Furthermore, men seemed to get an even bigger boost than women by upping their whole grain intake…
In fact, men with the highest whole grain intake had a 34 percent lower risk of developing Type II diabetes than men with the lowest intake. And women with the highest intake had a 22 percent lower risk than women with the lowest intake.
Oatmeal, muesli (a mixture of raw oats, nuts, seeds, and dried fruit), rye bread, and whole-grain bread were all associated with a lower risk of developing Type II diabetes — regardless of gender.
The researchers mentioned other studies showing that consumption of three whole-grain portions per day is as potent as medications for controlling high blood pressure.
Of course, in Denmark, as well as Norway, Sweden, and Finland, they often eat delicious whole-grain rye breads. They also eat muesli or oatmeal with fresh fruit and natural yogurt in the morning. Since the study was conducted in Denmark, researchers had the unique opportunity to compare different kinds of whole grains.
By contrast, previous studies on whole grains had mainly been conducted in the U.S., where people primarily get their whole grain from wheat.
But as this study suggests, it’s important to eat different types of whole grains — not just whole wheat — as they contain different types of dietary fiber and bioactive substances. This diversity helps support the health of your GI microbiome — the environment in your GI tract where billions of healthy probiotic bacteria thrive.
These fibers and bioactive substances possess what I coined as “biome-availability,” as they appear to go to work in your microbiome to support healthy blood sugar.
What’s it all mean for you?
In the end, this study confirms my dietary recommendations to replace refined, white flour with whole grains.
Unlike refined, white flour (which negatively affects your blood sugar, weight, and overall health), whole grains — like oatmeal, bulgur, couscous, rye, and wheatberries — positively affect your health.
It even seems to help reduce your risk of developing Type II diabetes, which is a refreshing finding after reading so much about the overhyped, but restrictive, Keto and Paleo diets.
What makes whole grains so much better than refined grains? First of all, they have a rich bran layer on the outside, which is packed with B vitamins and other nutrients. Inside the bran layer is the “endosperm,” which consists of a starchy carbohydrate with only limited protein and vitamin content.
Inside the endosperm is the “germ” core, which contains more B vitamins as well as vitamin E, bioactive botanical phytochemicals, and healthy essential fats. Thus, why it’s sometimes called “whole wheat germ.”
By comparison, processed, refined flour mills away the bran and removes the germ — leaving a refined powder of starchy carbs without the nutritional benefits.
A new approach to grains this holiday season
In your baking this holiday season, opt for whole grains instead of refined grains like white flour — and make sure they’re organic. You should look for a product that says “100 percent organic whole wheat” on the package.
I add that stipulation because 95 percent of the wheat grown in the U.S. is genetically modified (GM) and contaminated with glyphosate, also known as Roundup. This pesticide and known human carcinogen poisons your GI microbiome and probably much more.
I reported on the dangers of glyphosate and GM foods in the October 2017 issue of my monthly Insiders’ Cures newsletter (“REVEALED: Poison in your pasta”). Not yet a subscriber? No worries — it just takes one easy click.
Aside from baking, you can also work more whole grains into your daily routine. A company called Food for Life makes a delicious, whole grain bread called Ezekiel 4:9 with certified organic grains. And I’m a big fan. In fact, this is the only sliced bread we use in our house now. (Note that some grocery stores carry it in the refrigerated section.)
For breakfast, you can also opt for some healthy oatmeal porridge with steel-cut oats, blueberries, cinnamon, and cranberries, for many added health benefits. Cinnamon lowers blood sugar, and blueberries benefit both short- and long-term memory. For a tasty alternative to hot oatmeal, try “overnight oats,” where you simply soak equal amounts of oats and milk (preferably full fat) in a mason jar overnight, and then dress it up with fruit, nuts, and spices before serving.
You can also add blueberry powder to your baking, oatmeal, yogurt, or other dishes when the fresh berry is not in season. The most potent health benefits are found in blueberry powders with rose hips, baobab, and rooibos (aspal, or red bush).
Of course, incorporating more whole grains into your diet is just one way to lower your risk of diabetes. You can learn all the uncommonly effective, commonsense strategies to prevent — and even reverse — Type II diabetes in my online learning protocol, the Integrative Protocol for Defeating Diabetes. To learn more, or enroll today, simply click here.
P.S. On Friday I’ll tell you about another piece of faulty dietary advice from the U.S. government, which helps explain why Type II diabetes is such a huge problem in this country. So, stay tuned!
“Higher Whole-Grain Intake Is Associated with Lower Risk of Type 2 Diabetes among Middle-Aged Men and Women: The Danish Diet, Cancer, and Health Cohort,” J Nutr. 2018 Sep 1;148(9):1434-1444.
“Whole grains one of the most important food groups for preventing type 2 diabetes,” Science Daily (sciencedaily.com) 9/5/2018