A short list of how to choose the healthiest bread to buy

bread whole grain wheat
"We make bread simple and delicious, so you can enjoy bread the way it was meant to be." - Silver Hills Bakery

What is the healthiest bread to buy? What used to be a simple trip to the bakery has now become a confusing endeavour in the bread and breakfast cereal aisle. When I was young you entered the shop and instantly were lulled into a delicious fragrant of freshly baked bread. The baker’s wife behind the counter greeted you by name. You had your favorite kind of bread. But if you didn’t make it to the bakery in the morning chances were high that it was gone and you had to pick from what was left. Your choice of freshly baked bread was then picked from the rack by the baker’s wife and carefully wrapped into a paper bag. You paid, the bread was handed over to you and then you tested the crunchiness by squeezed it. If the crust lightly cracked open the bread found your approval. You could hardly wait to get home to top the delight with a layer of butter and Nutella while it was still a little warm.

Today you need a scientific degree and reading glasses to choose the healthiest bread to buy.

You could run a 50 meter race in the bread aisle with cellophane-wrapped loafs of bread waving for your attention. Take me I’m multi-grain! No take me because I’m made with emmer flour. Hey, don’t you know gluten-free is in? But I’m a wonder says the wonder bread. You want wonder in your life, don’t you? It is super confusing. So what the f*#$ is the healthiest bread to buy in the shelf? If your goal is to receive the scientific degree continue reading here as to what the fine difference is between “whole grain”, “whole wheat”, “100% whole wheat”, “white flour” and so on.

To make a long story short, here is how to pick the healthiest bread:

  • sprouted organic whole grain breadThe first ingredient should be (organic sprouted) WHOLE GRAIN.
  • Next best thing “100% whole grain”, then “100% whole wheat, spelt or whatever grain”.
  • The fiber count should be at least 2g fiber per 30g of bread (which doesn’t necessarily mean per slice).
  • The shorter the ingredients list the better. You DON’T want enriched or bleached flour. Remember it only takes flour, liquids and salt to make bread.
  • Don’t trust fancy claims like “100% natural”, “Multi-grain’’, “Brown bread”, “Wonder bread”, “diet”, “light”, “7 essential nutrients” or “Omega-3-rich”.
  • Aim for not more than 1 g sugar per slice.
  • Aim for less than 200 mg of sodium per slice.
  • Support an artisan bakery that makes bread from scratch with healthy ingredients. It doesn’t give you the guarantee that they use whole grains but hopefully they refer from using preservatives, artificial flavours and colours, refined sugar and partially hydrogenated oils.

The clip on the plastic bag might help you out in regards to the freshness question.

Are you collecting the twist-ties or clips that hold the plastic bag of your bread? If yes, than you might have a nice assortment of different colors in your drawer. Apparently bread makers use this color-coding so you can tell when the bread was baked (aka how fresh it is). There is

  • blue Monday
  • green Tuesday
  • red Thursday
  • white Friday and
  • yellow Saturday.

However, colors can vary by region or company. Don’t ask me why there is not bread baked on Wednesday.

A brand of bread I like and that is available at supermarkets in Canada and the US is Silver Hills Bakery with a wide variety of products.

A short list of how to choose the healthiest bread to buy by
Tanja Knapp
About the Author
Tanja Knapp

Tanja Knapp is an Explorer, Adventurer and Happiness Hunter currently camping in beautiful Vancouver, Canada. Her roots are in Germany where she grew up on a remote farm. A colony of abnormal cells in her cervix taught her the lesson that would change her life forever. Life doesn't get better by chance, it get better by change. She truly believes in creating happiness & health through constant adapting, growing and evolving. Her super power is curiosity. With her blog she likes to inspire others to explore uncharted territory.

If she is not busy writing, running, swimming or cycling, she is expanding her knowledge, exploring the World, and taking on new challenges.

She is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist and graduated with an Honors diploma in Holistic Nutrition from the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition in 2013. She obtained a Hospitality certification in 1998 and a Marketing Communications diploma in 2004. She has worked both in Europe and North America.

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