|The Lounge | Champions | The Wire | Schedule | Audio | Arcade | The Top Ten | Historical | Email | Video|
The Worshipful Company of Bakers
Bread is one of the oldest known recipes to man. It has been around for several millennia ...
The recent low-carbohydrate craze has given bread a bad reputation, but not all breads are created equal. There are more varieties of bread than there are supplement companies. This article will explain the history of bread, the types of bread, and the role that bread can play in the quest for good health and a better body.
The History of Bread
It is estimated that the first bread was made around 10000 years BC or over 12,000 years in the past. This bread was more than likely flatbread, similar to a tortilla, made simply of ground grains (flour) and water that was mashed and baked. The first tools and implements used in the making of bread are dated to about 8000 years BC.
Egypt is attributed with popularizing the art of making bread. Egyptians are considered to be the agricultural pioneers of the old world, probably benefiting from interactions with Samaria. The closed oven was invented circa 3000 BC and allowed for more varieties of bread to be produced. It is around this time that leavened bread is first described, that is bread, bread with yeast added so that it would rise during production. Refined grains were considered superior and therefore were prevalent in the higher courts, so the poorer populations used barley and sorghum in their breads.
Around 1000 BC the Mosaic laws were introduced. These laws, in the books of Leviticus and Deuteronomy, contained instructions to the nation of Israel regarding proper food preparation. When the Hebrew people fled Egypt during the legendary Exodus, they were forced to make unleavened (flat) bread in their haste. Leviticus declares a feast commemorating the exodus using flatbread. Bread is a common symbol of bounty in the bible - Leviticus 21:22 declares, "He shall eat the bread of his God." When the people of God were lost in the wilderness, they were fed manna, which was described as bread from heaven. The Christian Savior, Jesus Christ, is called the "Bread of Life".
The bible also gives one of the earliest recipes for sprouted grain bread. It reads, in Ezekiel 4:9-17: "The thou also unto thee wheat, and barley, and beans, and lentils, and millet, and fitches, and put them in one vessel, and make thee bread thereof, according to the number of days that thou shalt lie upon thy side, three hundred and ninety days shalt thou eat thereof." While more than a year of nothing but this bread sounds like quite a marathon diet, analysis of products today using the same recipe show that it was a well-balanced, nutritious bread that yielded plenty of protein, fiber, carbohydrate, and healthy fat.
In 400 BC, around the time when Socrates was providing sage dietary advice, Plato imagined an ideal world. In this world, men would live to a ripe old age. Their main source of sustenance would be whole grain bread from local wheat.
168 BC saw the establishment of baker's guilds in Rome. Bread even played a major role in politics when, in 40 BC, as part of a campaign, it was decreed that bread should be freely distributed to every male adult.
In 1202 AD, English laws were passed to regulate the production of bread. While many people are aware of the differences between whole grain (brown) bread and white breads, few realize that it caused quite a stir in 1307 when the white bread bakers and brown bread bakers split to form separate guilds! It was not until two centuries later, in 1569, that the guilds were reunited and called the "Worshipful Company of Bakers."
As early as 1826, the whole grain bread used by the military was called superior for health to the white, refined bread used by the aristocracy. In fact, the term refined today comes from this fact. Before the industrial revolution, it was more labor consuming (and therefore costly) to refine bread, so white bread was the main staple for aristocracy. This made them "refined".
In 1910, Americans were eating 210 pounds of wheat flour every year. The commercial bread-slicing machine was invented in 1912 by Otto Rohwedder, and unveiled in 1928. The 1930s saw the United States pursue a diet enrichment program to begin fortifying breads with vitamins and minerals after their discovery in the late 1920s. In 1941, calcium was added to help prevent rickets, observed in many female recruits to the military. In 1956, it became the law to enrich all refined breads. By 1971 consumption of white bread had dropped to around 110 pounds per year, but by 1997 (possibly due in part to the low fat, high carbohydrate craze and the food pyramid) consumption was up to 150 pounds - still 60 pounds shy of the fit, trim Americans at the turn of the century.
Types of Bread
There are many types of bread. This is by no means an exhaustive list.
In the most basic form, grinding grains, adding water, and heating it produces whole grain flatbread. Whole grain bread is similar, only yeast is added so that the bread rises. White bread starts out similar to whole grain bread. The grain is processed, however. The hard, outer portion of the grain is stripped, removing fiber and many vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats that are naturally available. The remaining portion is ground to a fine powder, the enriched with a generic spray of vitamins and minerals. This is then used to bake the bread.
Spelt bread is a grain-bread, but made from special wheat that does not contain gluten. Gluten, a form of protein, is a common allergen and gluten intolerance or allergies are quite common.
Since whole grains are not sweet, sourdough bread is simply wheat bread with no sweetener added. Once a sweetener is added - often high fructose corn syrup in commercial breads, but typically brown sugar, honey, or molasses in fresh baked breads - it becomes the typical bread you are used to buying.
Varieties such as oat, barley, rye, kamut, triticale, millet, and even rice bread are simply variations using different grains other than traditional wheat. Sometimes seeds and spices are added, creating varieties such as basil, garlic, onion, or cinnamon bread.
Sprouted grain bread has increased in popularity in recent years. Traditional bread is made from ground flour from the hardened kernel of grain. Sprouted grain bread involves soaking the grain and allowing it to sprout. The sprouted seedlings are then mashed together and baked. Sprouting allows the enzymes in the grain to convert some of the carbohydrates and fats to vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. Due to the changes that take place, sprouted grain bread typically is higher in protein, fiber, and certain vitamins and minerals than regular bread. It is also less refined and processed than even stone ground wheat bread, so it has less of an impact on your blood sugar.
Bread and Nutrition
Many commercial types of bread are highly refined. Enriched breads have the original nutrients stripped out and replaced with inferior, often lesser quantities of standard vitamins and minerals. Some companies will try to produce wholesome-looking bread by adding grains to the outside, even when the main ingredient is enriched bread. High fructose corn syrup is often added as a sweetener.
The first thing to look at when purchasing breads is the ingredients list. Look for breads where the very first ingredient is "whole grain" or "stone ground" rather than "enriched" (even if whole grains follow the enriched flour ingredient). Look for natural sweeteners like molasses or honey over high fructose corn syrup. Preferably, the sweetener and salt should be last on the ingredients list. If you consume high quantities of bread or keep the bread refrigerated, it will last longer and you can purchase fresher varieties that do not contain additives or preservatives. The most basic ingredients list will look like this: whole-wheat flour, water, salt. There should be a few grams of protein and fiber per slice - low protein and/or fiber is a sign of excessive processing that has stripped these nutrients, and implies that the other nutrients will be missing as well.
Rye bread typically contains moderate portions of protein and fiber per slice. A 100-calorie slice will contain a few grams of protein, a few grams of fiber, around 20 grams of carbohydrate, and decent amounts of calcium and iron. The addition of flaxseed increases protein and fiber (for the same 100 calorie slice) but also adds trace amounts of health, unsaturated fats.
There are actually some amazing bread recipes that can be very beneficial for the bodybuilder. A variety of bread called "Men's Bread" by French Meadow Bakery contains the following: Organic whole wheat flour, filtered water, organic flaxseed, organic pumpkin seeds, organic oat fiber, organic low fat soy flour, organic wheat flour, organic sesame seeds, organic raw sprouted fava beans, organic sunflower seeds, organic millet, organic pea protein isolate (non-GMO), organic wheat flour (wheat germ restored), soy germ isoflavone concentrate (non-GMO), organic sprouted quinoa, organic sprouted amaranth, organic sprouted spelt, organic sprouted kamut, wheat gluten, organic sprouted barley, organic sprouted oats, organic sprouted wheat, unrefined sea salt.
This power-packed ingredients list provides a 100-calorie slice of bread with essential fatty acids, 5 grams of fiber, and 8 grams of protein to only 11 grams of carbohydrate. It is abundant in over 13 vitamins and minerals. Compare this to a typical slice of white bread, which contains no fiber, trace amounts of protein, and double the carbohydrate.
Bread has been around for ages. While trends such as low carbohydrate nutrition or low fat dieting come and go, bread is here to stay - people "earn their bread" or "bring the bread home" and are constantly looking for the "best thing since sliced bread". Before eliminating bread from your program, consider the many types of bread that are available and decide if there is one that suits your needs. Bread can increase your protein intake, add fiber to your diet, refill you muscles by supply quality carbohydrate in addition to healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. People are always looking for the next great protein or power bar. Why not try a slice of bread?
Jeremy Likness is an International Health Coach and motivational speaker. After losing 65 pounds of fat, he discovered his true vision to coach thousands around the world to better health. A Certified Fitness Trainer and Specialist in Performance Nutrition, Jeremy is the author of the internationally-selling e-Book, Lose Fat, Not Faith and the companion 5-CD set. Jeremy has been published in major online publications including Tom Venuto's Fitness Renaissance and Bodybuilding.com. Jeremy's approach is unique because he focuses on fitness from the inside out. Visit Jeremy online at Natural Physiques.
N.J. food pantries, soup kitchens push for increased funding to nutrition ... - The Times, Trenton - NJ.com
Your Target of Health is Easy
Many of us, probably even you, want this thing called health, yet have no idea what it would look like if we had it. We are going after this elusive thing, but we really have never stopped to think about what it was.
Blueberries: Healthy and Easy on the Tummy After WLS
All of my life I believed the best way to eat blueberries was with a muffin wrapped around them. No way could plain off-the-bush berries taste good.
Seafood - the Healthy Alternative
Most red and white meats are very fatty and are not a healthy way to eat. Seafood on the other hand offers you a great tasting alternative.
Beans - The Perfect Food?
The Face of the Waters
The story of creation begins with water. Water is an essential nutrient in our diet, but many people fail to address this important component of health.
Green Tea and Cholesterol Facts
A green and lush oasis in the middle of a scorching dessert. A cool breeze on a hot summer night.
Dietary Guideline USA
Are you sick and tired of the confusion about our dietary guideline? Don't do this, do that, no not this, lose weight this way and on and on. Too much fat, more of this and it goes on and on and on.
I am sure you have heard you have to build more muscle so you can burn more fat. I'm sure you have also heard that you have to put your body into extreme calorie deficit in order to lose weight.
What Really Happens To The Food You Eat
After we have eaten a meal -- and often we do this in a hurry, without much chewing, under a lot of stress, or in the presence of negative emotions -- we give no thought to what becomes of our food once it has been swallowed.We have been led to assume that anything put in the mouth automatically gets digested flawlessly, is efficiently absorbed into the body where it nourishes our cells, with the waste products being eliminated completely by the large intestine.
A Result Producing Guide to Nutrition
If you want to build muscle, lose body fat or improve your performance in a sport, you can lift all the weights and do all the cardio you want, but without proper nutrition, diet and supplements you will find yourself falling short of your goals. In this article we will help you gain a better understanding of what kind of foods you should eat and which ones to stay away from, how to set up a daily meal plan and what supplements you should take.
Just The Tea FAQs: Health Benefits (Part III)
The wonders of modern science continue to amaze us with new cures and essential information on healthy living: what to eat, what to drink, what do to; and, of course, what not to eat, drink, and do. All of this is quite wonderful.
Fasting & Enemas...For A Clean Body Detox
A hundred years ago, life was very different here on earth. The air was cleaner and the earth was rich in nutrients.
TsuNoni - Green Tea Meets Noni
East Meets WestAsian cultures have realized the medical benefits of green tea for centuries. Those who drank it lived longer, healthier lives.
Healthy Eating Myths Destroyed
Some of the things you think you know that just ain't so (these myths are not true):Eating Cholesterol does not increase your cholesterol levelsSalt does NOT cause High Blood PressureEating Fat does NOT make you fatAll refined carbohydrates are hazardous to youArtificial sweeteners of all kinds are not good for you All vitamins and supplements are NOT created equalEating Cholesterol does not increase your cholesterol levelsThe Medical professions current way of thinking about cholesterol. They look and see lots of cholesterol in the blood.
Help Prevent Premature Aging With Nutrition-Science
Aging occurs when the body's cells die at faster rates than new cells are generated. People age prematurely because inadequate nutrition resulting from poor diet stimulates cellular destruction and increases the potential for obesity, diabetes, cancer and other chronic diseases.
Feeling Tired? Cant Lose Weight? Tap Into Protein Power!
You're always hungry right? The last thing you have time for is to plan meals ahead. Don't despair, you body was designed to be refueled continually.
Whatever Happened to the Basic Four Food Groups?
What Ever Happened to the Basic FourThe USDA was originally given the conflicting task of educating the public on agricultural matters while simultaneously working with food producers to provide a reliable and consistent food supply. This has, over the course of time, led to our ever evolving dietary guidelines, and yet is the purpose of these guidelines for our health or to sell more food?Would You Believe There Were Once 12 Food Groups?The food guides during the 1930's were heavily influenced by The Great Depression and at that time included 12 separate groups!In 1956 the USDA produced the "Basic Four" food guide.
The 9 Most Common Mistakes to Avoid When Reading a Food Label
NutrientsFat, Sugar, Sodium and CarbohydrateThe sections on a food label shows the name of a nutrient and theamount of that nutrient provided by one serving of food. You mayneed to know this information, especially if you have high bloodpressure, diabetes or are eating a diet that restricts certainnutrients such as sodium or carbohydrates.
Good Eggs -- Rediscover The Simple Pleasures of Eggs!
Health food or heart attack on a plate? Eggs had a bad rep for a few years. We worried that they would elevate our cholesterol levels.
Its Not That Bad - The Biggest Lie We Tell Ourselves
Some people say to themselves, junk food is not that bad. If you want to believe this than good luck.
Section Site Map - Submit News - Feedback - Comments - Advertise with Us
Copyright © 2006 Luminati Inc. All rights reserved.