I'm looking to incorporate more grains in my diet. Part of the goal would be to lose weight. Have my body work more to process the food. Fibre is good.
Also I'm a diabetic (type 2) - need to weigh up anything that will eventually convert to glucose.
I eat loads of fruit - which I generally consider better than most other things I might be tempted to eat. I like my veges too.
I eat when hungry - except my evening meal.
I eat some processed cereals, a wheat-bix (Australia) hi-grain and also some all bran cereal.
I guess in part I want something that is readily edible - including while at work (office environment).
Something with reasonable protein would be good. Low GI would be good.
While I don't want to more away from eating a lot of fruit - I probably eat at least 35 pieces of fruit per week (about 30 bananas)
And to top it all off - I'd hope whatever ideas you might have would point to some grains that are somewhat attractive to eat. Or at least not bland and dry.
Posted by Tatiana at 03/04/08 20:13:10Russell,
Okay, your link worked this time ^_^
First of all, since you are diabetic, the number one thing I'd say is to go see a dietitian/nutritionist in your area to make sure you're eating appropriately to manage your blood sugars, etc.
In addition to grains, other food groups that effect blood sugar are: starchy vegetables (such as beans, peas, corn, and potatoes), fruits, milk, and yogurt (dairy and non dairy included). If you ever eat any vegetarian protein foods, many of them do have carbohydrate in them, best to check the label or ask your dietitian.
The best choice for grains is whole grains. Which you choose are up to you. GI is very controversial these days, and many practitioners don't use it anymore as it's effectiveness is questionable at this point in time. However, regardless of that, whole grains, whole fruits/vegetables, higher fiber is better for the vast majority of people.
That being said, which grains you choose is up to you, there are tons out there. I am assuming since you listed this on the raw page you want grains you can eat raw. This will greatly narrow your options, as you don't see nearly as many grains being eaten raw. A few that can be awesome raw are buckwheat, oats, and wild rice. I have some recipes for soaking the groats for use and I'll post those up later. I have made buckwheat krispies for myself before (basically soaked then dried buckwheat) which can be used in granola or other such applications. If you eat cooked grains, you have lots more options. Since you mentioned protein, one very high protein grain is quinoa. It is easy to cook and is very tasty.
Posted by goldenowl at 03/04/08 22:39:49Tatiana,
Thank-you for your considered response.
While my diabetes care is via a endocrinologist - he doesn't do dietary advice. I will look at going to visit a dietitian / nutritionist.
I've been considering buckwheat recently - I've just found a source of raw groats, but basically don't know what to do with them.
In part I spoke of raw because my body will have to do the most work to access the energy. Other reasons include the simplicity factor. I'm not against cooking them.
I'd be interested in the recipes you spoke of.
I've been looking at some of the Vegetarian Food Pyramids and I notice that generally Grains are the base of the pyramid - but I didn't seem to find a lot about grains when I did a Google search. If grains should form the basis of the diet / food pyramid - where is the information? Am I not searching the right things?
I've been steadily transforming my diet to be consistent with what *I* think should be healthy for a diabetic. No alcohol, no sucrose / glucose / dextrose, little or no processed foods.
I've relied on fruit, since I understand that fructose isn't glucose (bad in higher quanities for diabetics). Compared to the di-saccharide sucrose which breaks down into fructose and glucose. I'm unsure if my thinking is sound in this respect.
I could eat less fruit perhaps - but in favour of what else? I like my veges but only eat half (if that) the amount of veges versus fruit. So I'm thinking grains might be a reasonable fit.
While I am not a raw fooder (is that the word?) I am looking at that factor of having my body work harder to obtain the energy. And raw doesn't generally bother me.
Thanks again - I'll look out for the recipes, in the interim, I'll investigate getting some nutritionist / dietitian advice.
Posted by Tatiana at 03/12/08 12:34:17Russell,
Here is a reference that may help you find a dietitian in your area:
The changes you are making by cutting back on simple sugars, alcohol, and refined foods is great.
The American Food Guide Pyramid is built with an emphasis on whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, with some proteins and calcium sources (in a vegetarian, sometimes these sources also fall into the first categories). You also need a small amount of healthy fats.
While fruit is a very healthy food, it is still considered a carbohydrate and can affect your diabetes and blood sugar levels. A serving of 1/2 cup of grains is about the same amount of carbohydrate as 1/2 cup fruit (generally speaking). The important thing is balance. The foods that affect blood sugar (have carbohydrates) are grains, starchy vegetables (beans, peas, corn, potatoes), fruit, and "milks" including dairy and nondairy milks and yogurts. Seeing a dietitian will help you to get a better personalized diet to make sure you are balanced and controlling your diabetes.
Here is the info on the buckwheat (I got this from Ani Phyo's book).
Recipe calls for 1 lb raw buckwheat groats but you can really use however much you want. Put then in a large bowl and fill to the top with water (like soaking dry beans). Keep an eye on them, as they will soak up water and you may have to add more to the bowl to keep them covered. You may rinse the groats and replace the water every few hours as it gets kinda slimy. Soak for a total of 6-8 hours. Afterwards, rinse and drain them. You then need to dehyrate them. You can use a dehyrator, or, if you don't have one, you can lay them out on a flat baking sheet and put them in the sun for a few hours. I've also seen a lot of raw books recommend using your oven and turning on/off on the warm cycle, just enough to keep the oven a bit warm, but try to prevent it from going over 115F or so. I did it this way and they came out just fine. You do have to pay attention and remember to switch the oven on and off, though. You don't want to cook the buckwheat. Whatever method you use, make sure they are completely dry so they will stay good and not get moldy or anything on you. In an airtight container they are good 6-9 months. They are just a small crunchy nugget without much flavor, so they do great added to flavorful things like granola, yogurt, etc.