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Nutrition Cereals - healthy or unhealthy?

Cereals – healthy or unhealthy?

Topic Overview

  1. Cereals – healthy or unhealthy?
  2. Cereals – nutrient components
  3. Cereals – acidic or alkaline?
  4. Cereals – acidic or basic based on nutrients
  5. The origins of the cereal
  6. Cereal cultivation today and in the past
  7. Diet cereals – yes or no?
  8. Nutrition cereals – implementation in everyday life

1. Cereals – healthy or unhealthy?

Cereals make you fat, they overacidify, they are pure carbohydrate bombs and therefore you should only consume them in small quantities. Not infrequently, these are the statements made in today’s nutritional consultations.

In the article Healthy diet was already written about the most important dietary rules for a healthy diet.

Today we are going to talk specifically about a topic that is very often misunderstood, namely cereals.

I myself know from training that cereals are said to have an acidic effect on the pH value of the human body and that they consist mainly of carbohydrates.

So, without any ifs and buts, a diet rich in grains is unhealthy for the human body.

But is it really like that?

To understand this, this article is about the nutritional components, the origins of cereals, how cereals are grown today, and how cereals are processed.

2. Cereals – nutrient components

1. Cereals - carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are often considered unhealthy or recommended only in small amounts.

It is very important to distinguish here whether they are ingested in short-chain form, such as industrial sugar and white flour products, or as long-chain carbohydrates in the form of potatoes or whole grain products.

Long-chain carbohydrates provide long-term energy and do not cause a short-term sharp rise in blood sugar.

With a balanced relationship between carbohydrate intake and energy consumption through exercise or mental stress, carbohydrates do not have a negative effect on human health at all.

2. Cereals - fats

Cereals contain unsaturated fatty acids. Fats are essential for health. A severely low-fat diet leads to damage in the liver/bile area in particular.

However, trans fatty acids and large amounts of omega 6 fatty acids should be avoided at all costs.

Neither is present in the grain.

3. Cereals - proteins

Cereals contain a lot of vegetable protein with amino acids that are already bioavailable.

Amino acids are the building blocks of life. They are absolutely essential for survival and are needed, for example, for the production of hormones and enzymes or for muscle and nerve regeneration.

Modern cereals, on the other hand, which are very rich in gluten, occupy a special position. To utilize this protein, you need a very good intestinal function or sourdough preparation.

4. Cereals - dietary fiber

Ballast substances used to be attributed a completely insignificant position in human nutrition. In fact, they have no essential importance, such as amino acids.

Nevertheless, they are very important for human health. They have a regulating effect on blood sugar. Furthermore, they act as a satiator, preventing you from consuming abnormal amounts of carbohydrates.

They also create a positive milieu for the proliferation and persistence of health-promoting bacteria.

Vegetables and whole grain products are very rich in fiber. In contrast, highly processed cereal products are low in fiber.

5. Cereals - vitamins

Especially the original cereals are very rich in vitamins. It is worth mentioning here that not only one or 2 vitamins are present in large quantities, but an enormous breadth of vitamins, especially the vitamin B complex.

In industrialized countries, vitamin deficiency is highly prevalent. In addition to the increasingly reudcating nutrient content of food, a wide variety of environmental toxins, negative stress, lack of sleep and competitive sports, among other things, lead to such deficiency symptoms.

Source grains, in a form that is not highly processed, can significantly reduce these supply gaps.

6. Cereals - minerals & trace elements

Calcium supplements, iron tablets or dietary supplements with magnesium are now widely available. Frequently, poorly usable forms in drugstores and supermarkets are still used.

Various minerals and trace elements are contained in cereals, sometimes in large quantities.

In addition to quite individual functions in the human body, they have an alkaline effect on the PH value of the person.

Severe hyperacidity conditions are ubiquitous in industrialized countries with disastrous consequences for our health.

It is therefore very important to supply the body with sufficient bioavailable minerals and trace elements and to reduce factors that lead to hyperacidity.

7. Cereals - enzymes

Whole grains in their original forms have a high enzyme content, which is essential for the digestibility and compatibility of food.

To maintain this enzyme content, the use of pesticides, overfertilization and heavy processing of grain should be avoided.

8. Cereals - secondary plant substances

Everyone knows carbohydrates, fats or vitamins. However, secondary plant compounds are unknown to many people.

They are just as essential as amino acids, for example. The various secondary plant compounds have very individual functions in the human body.

In particular, phytohormones have already been mentioned in some other posts, in relation to hormone production.

A deficiency of sex hormones leads to a severe reduction in general performance and poses an enormous threat to the reproductive capacity of humans.

People should therefore consume more wild plants and herbs again, in addition to high-quality whole grain products.

3. Cereals – acidic or alkaline?

Almost all sources categorize cereal products as acidic a few as neutral, depending on the type of cereal product.

I come to a completely different conclusion on this question. For me, cereals are clearly one of the alkaline foods. But how do I arrive at this assumption?

Mostly, no own scientific efforts are made anymore and existing knowledge is only disseminated on the basis of sources. As a result, scientific fallacies continue to prevail, sometimes for decades.

One very crucial question should be asked about this:

What actually determines whether a food is acidic or alkaline?

1. if you eat a food extremely frantically, do not chew it properly or do 10 other things at the same time, it will have a sour effect. No matter what you eat.

2. if a food is heavily processed and massively chemically treated, then it also has a basically acidic effect.

3. which nutrient components a food has.

To this end, I would like to return briefly to the nutrient components of cereals.

4. Cereals – acidic or basic on the basis of nutrients

1. Carbohydrates

Long-chain carbohydrates have a neutral pH effect on the human body if they are not consumed in large quantities.

In the case of grains that are not highly processed, the abundance of other nutrients very quickly leads to a natural feeling of satiety and it is therefore not possible to consume these vast amounts of carbohydrates.

2. Fats

Most fats also have a neutral effect on the human body. Exceptions are larger amounts of omega 6 fatty acids, basically the trans fatty acids and in very large amounts also the saturated fatty acids.

None of this is found in cereals.

3. Proteins

Amino acids are also pH neutral, only a few have either a slightly acidic or slightly basic effect.

Protein, on the other hand, which is not broken down into its amino acids, has an acidic effect.

Animal protein is generally more acidic than vegetable protein, as it is less easily utilized by the body.

Cereals with free amino acids and a high proportion of easily utilisable vegetable proteins have a pH-neutral effect on the human body, purely from this perspective.

Cereals that are very high in gluten tend to have a more acidic effect, purely from a protein perspective, and thus lose some of their otherwise alkaline nutrient profile.

4. Dietary fiber

Dietary fiber has a neutral effect on the human body, tending to be slightly alkaline if anything, but never acidic.

5. Vitamins

Vitamins have an alkaline effect on the human body. The only exception to this is synthetically produced vitamins.

Especially the original forms of the cereal have a very high vitamin content.

6. Minerals & trace elements

Minerals and trace elements have a strong alkalizing effect on the human body.

It is important for the absorption capacity that you consume them in organic form from foods in which they occur naturally.

Cereals are a very clear representative of this.

7. Enzymes

Enzymes cannot be assigned to the acidic or basic category in the direct sense. However, they are essential for the usability of food and the absorption capacity of nutrients.

When food is ultra-high temperature and heavily processed, the enzymes are destroyed.

Consequently, natural grain products have an alkaline effect on the human body, while highly processed grain products have a more acidic effect.

8. Secondary plant substances

Secondary plant compounds are definitely also among the alkaline nutrient components.

There are significantly more phytochemicals in the original cereals than in the modern ones.

Consequently, the original forms of the grain, such as emmer, spelt and einkorn have a significantly more alkaline effect on the human body than wheat, for example.

In the article “When do foods have an acidic and alkaline effect?” this topic is discussed in detail again.

All nutrients are clearly subdivided into the acidic, neutral and basic categories.

5. The origins of the cereal

Many people are not aware that the modern cereals originate from the grasses. This has been increasingly cultivated, bred and developed over thousands of years to meet the enormous food needs of the world’s population.

Unfortunately, this results in an increasing increase in carbohydrate content and a severe loss of many other nutritional components.

Modern man judges the value of food by quantity rather than nutrient content. Consequently, he not only eats a very unhealthy diet, but also buys food at a poor price-performance ratio.

In the case of the nutrient content of cereals, I already pointed out that an extremely high carbohydrate content tends to have an acidic effect, even if they are in a long-chain form.

Modern very high-yielding cereals therefore have only a slightly alkaline effect on the human body, while the cereals emmer, einkorn, spelt and co. have a very alkaline effect.

6. Cereal cultivation today and in the past

A few generations ago, the fields were still fertilized with the livestock manure of their own farm animals, which lived in conditions worthy of animals and were not treated with medicines due to the healthier living conditions.

The completely rampant consumption of meat by the world’s population has led to a massive increase in factory farming. The result is the overfertilization of our fields. The quality of livestock manure no longer corresponds to that of species-appropriate animal husbandry and is chemically contaminated by the use of antibiotics and other medications.

This over-fertilization leads to a weakening of cellular structures, making them increasingly susceptible to pests.

This, in turn, has also led to an increase in the use of crop protection products. substances that you eat every day with your food.

The long-term effects of chemical pesticides are devastating and far from fully understood.

7. Diet cereals – yes or no?

In order to finally clarify this question, it is crucial to consider the listed points.

Heavily processed cereal products in the form of sugar and white flour, which have thus lost the entire nutritional profile, can pose a major health threat to the human organism.

Furthermore, modern agriculture and the use of plant protection products are quite questionable from a health point of view.

However, a progressive decline in food quality and processing methods is not only found in cereals, but also in animal foods, fruits and vegetables.

Such quality losses often lead to certain foods being fundamentally classified as unhealthy, even though they are not.

Due to the enormously high nutrient content and the alkaline effect, cereals in their original form are a very important staple food.

In this regard, one should return more to the original forms of grain and a more conventional agriculture. Furthermore, you should resort to cereal products at a good private baker or simply take matters into your own hands.

8. Cereal nutrition – implementation in everyday life

I have owned a grain mill and a grain flaker for many years. grain flaker. Since then I have been producing my own cereal flakes and bread using the traditional sourdough method.

Experiments with a wide variety of spices also make it an indescribable taste experience.

Also sponge cakes, pancakes, roux as a base for sauces and pasta dough, are made from my own freshly milled flour. The grains are from organic farming, free of pesticides, from the company Schnitzer.

Optionally, there is always the possibility to simply look in the direct environment, whether there are small farmers who grow grain in organic cultivation.

My grain mill is from the company Komo. Komo Komomio is an electric grain mill with a capacity of about one kilo and about 150-200 grams of fine flour per minute. The grinding degree can be easily adjusted and even hard cereals such as corn can be ground without any problems.

For large-scale bakers, there are also much larger models, and for those who do not want to do without their grain mill even in the event of a power failure, Komo also offers a hand mill.