One of the easiest ways to start getting the health benefits of plant-based foods right now, no matter where you are on your vegan journey, is to swap out whole grains for processed, refined grains--and to eat some every day.
In this clip from the latest episode of Prescription: Nutrition, I talk about why whole grains are so healthy. And in the chart below, you'll see how to cook 14 delicious and disease-fighting whole grains.
Eating just 3 servings a day of whole grains (1 serving is 1/2 cup of cooked whole grains) can protect against heart disease, stroke, cancers, diabetes and obesity, and help you live longer. Whole grains also help lower cholesterol, boost the immune system, and can provide up to 10 percent of your daily protein needs.
But eating processed, refined grains, in which the nutrient-rich bran, germ and fiber have been removed, can increase your risk for heart disease, diabetes and obesity, and shorten your life span.
There are lots of whole grains to choose from, including gluten-free varieties, as you'll see on this cooking chart, excerpted from WholeGrainsCouncil.org:
WHOLE GRAINS COOKING CHART
To 1 Cup of: Add This Much Water: Bring to Boil, Then Simmer: Cooked, Makes:
Amaranth* 3 cups 45-60 min 3½ cups
Barley 3 cups 45-60 min 3½ cups
Black Rice* 2 cups 30 min 3 cups
Brown Rice* 2½ cups 25-45 min 3 cups
Buckwheat* 2 cups 20 min 4 cups
Bulgur 2 cups 10-12 min 3 cups
Corn Polenta* 4 cups 25-30 min 2½ cups
Einkorn 2 cups 25-35 min 3 cups
Farro 2½ cups 25-40 min 3 cups
Millet* 2½ cups 25-35 min 4 cups
Oats** 4 cups 20 min 4 cups
Quinoa* 2 cups 12-15 min 3 cups
Teff* 3 cups 20 min 2½ cups
Wild Rice* 3 cups 45-55 min 3½ cups
**Oats are gluten-free, but are commonly grown and processed with wheat, so make sure the packaging is labeled gluten-free
So, let's get cooking! And I hope you'll check out the full episode of "A Grain of Truth" on Prescription: Nutrition.
Have a great week, fam!