A new study published in the online edition of Nutrition Reviews concludes that eating up to 50% of your grains from refined grain sources does not significantly increase disease risk.
The review article, entitled “Evaluation of the evidence between consumption of refined grains and health outcomes” looked at 135 articles published on the topic from 2000-2010.
The author, Peter G Williams of the University of Wollongong (Australia) found that consuming half of grains from refined grains – provided the refined grains did not have added fat, sugar or sodium – did not increase risk of developing heart disease, diabetes or promoting weight gain.
Although there was no established link between high refined grain consumption and disease development, the author still warns that it’s not a reason to eat less whole grains, saying, “Nonetheless, eating more whole-grain foods remains an important health recommendation…most consumers will need to reduce their current consumption of refined grains to no more than one-third to one-half of all grains in order to meet the targets for whole-grain foods.”
The sticking point is the study looked at refined grains WITHOUT added fat, sugar or sodium. This excludes sugared cereals, fatty fries and salted snacks: the very refined grains that account for so many excess carb calories in the American diet, once again proving the point that when it comes to carbs, you’re safer to say, “If it’s white – walk away!”