Australia may have one of the highest life expectancies globally, but a recent study by The Lancet reveals that almost half of the population has non-communicable diseases such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes. A major risk factor for non-communicable diseases and early mortality is a diet low in whole grains.
Despite the Australian Dietary Guidelines recommending the inclusion of four to six serves of grain foods daily, mainly from whole grains, most Australians don’t eat the recommended amount. The research shows 50 per cent of Australians are unsure of what whole grains are, with many lacking knowledge about how to prepare and consume them. There’s also an abundance of conflicting information on grains, so let’s cut through the confusion.
Whole grains, such as oats and barley, contain the whole grain kernel.
Rich in dietary fibre, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, they maintain healthy blood pressure, reduce serum cholesterol levels and lower the risk of heart disease.
Whole grains provide a sustained energy source, stabilising blood sugar levels and reducing the risk of type two diabetes. High-fibre foods, such as whole grains, promote feelings of fullness, which can support weight management and healthy eating habits.
Incorporating whole grains can benefit gut health by balancing the bacteria in the gut microbiome. Good gut health has positive long-term health implications, such as lowered disease risk, improved emotional well-being and a stronger immune system.
By including more whole grains, you can proactively reduce your risk of non-communicable diseases and improve your overall health.
Looking for ways to include more whole grains into your week? Click here.