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Oh this bread looks amazing, doesn’t it?  I bet you are like I was and could be thinking it’s a bad food, right? I understand that many people are encouraged to stop eating carbohydrates to lose weight or simply because they have been taught that carbs are bad for them.  The truth is, we need carbs for energy.  I’m going to ask you to consider trying sourdough.  What is sourdough? It’s a traditional method of fermenting grains to make bread and it is easier to digest and has additional benefits.

Fermenting grains creates prebiotic substances from the starches in the flour to aid gut health so sourdough is a good food for feeding the good bacteria.  The research I have is on sourdough made with white flour.  The fermentation process also makes nutrients more available, as this is the case with all fermented foods.  However, the process of sourdough also adds B vitamins that were not there prior to fermentation occurring.  This makes sense since sourdough is a combination of good bacteria and yeast, about 100 times more good bacteria than yeast!  Wild yeast strains are present since this is what makes the bread rise to give it an amazing light texture, and yeast is a great source of B vitamins.

The acidic nature, the sour of sourdough, aids in pre-digestion of the protein molecules in the grain, especially the gliadin in gluten, as protease enzymes prefer an acid pH for optimal function.  As a matter of fact, researchers are studying sourdough for consumption by celiacs. (I’m not advocating that those with celiac run out and eat sourdough bread, just yet.)

The gluten must be completely degraded in order for a celiac to tolerate it, and this would make it quite sour tasting.  Some experiments involved using fully degraded sourdough mixed with fresh gluten free grains added after fermentation to lessen the sour taste and these breads were also suitable for those with celiac.

The University of Guelph took four samples of bread: regular white flour bread, whole wheat bread, whole wheat with barley bread and white flour sourdough bread and fed them to people ages 50 to 60 who were all overweight. They were fed bread at breakfast and then again at lunch.

After both meals, blood sugar and insulin levels were measured.  The sourdough provided the lowest level of blood sugar and insulin, and surprisingly continued to keep the blood and insulin levels low for the following meal where no bread was consumed.  The whole wheat, on the other hand, provided the highest level of blood sugar after a meal, even higher than the regular white flour bread!

If you want to try sourdough, look for bakers in your area who are making TRADITIONAL sourdough bread. You can also look for an online reliable source.

What do you think? Are you willing to try it? It sure sounds tempting with a dash of olive oil!

 

References:

Sourdough and cereal fermentation in a nutritional perspective, Kaisa Poutanen a,b,*, Laura Flander a, Kati Katina a, Food Microbiology 26 (2009) 693–699
Structural changes of gliadins during sourdough fermentation Gokcen Komen, Ayse Handan Baysal, Sebnem Harsa, Izmir Institute of Technology, Izmir, Turkey
http://www.uoguelph.ca/news/2008/07/sourdough_bread.html
Glycosidases and B group vitamins produced by six yeast strains from the digestive tract of Phoracantha semipunctata larvae and their role in the insect development, C. Chararas et al, Mycopathologia 1983, Volume 83, Issue 1, pp 9-15
Sourdough Bread Made from Wheat and Nontoxic Flours and Started with Selected Lactobacilli Is Tolerated in Celiac Sprue Patients, Raffaella Di Cagno1,†, et al, Appl. Environ. Microbiol. February 2004 vol. 70 no. 2 1088-1096

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Photo by Monserrat Solis from Pexels