Why do people love Ancient Grains?
BBC News has recently published “Why do Americans love Ancient Grains?”, an article on the sudden rise to fame of whole grains such as amaranth, barley, bulgur, buckwheat, kamut, millet, spelt, teff and quinoa. The author argues that both their nutritional reputation as “superfoods” and their dichotomous position towards modern, processed cereal and grains make for a perfect storm that has “sales of kamut [rising to] 686% in the year from July 2013, while sales of spelt rose by 363% and amaranth by 123%”, according to calculations from the American non-profit association, Whole Grains Council.
They are seen as more healthy, more natural and better for us, providing more vitamins, minerals, fibre and protein than modern wheat – partly because they are rarely eaten in processed form.
Most of the recent hype for these grains also comes from the mystery surrounding them, the article argues. “People might be more interested in trying these grains because of their place of origin, history and the culture,” says Vandana Sheth, nutritionist and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
Staying close behind, mainstream and big names in the processed food industry have taken advantage of the spotlight, incorporating Ancient Grains to well-known products. General Mills is no exception, as they are bringing in spelt, quinoa and kamut into a new version of Cheerio’s. Although there might not be such a thing as ‘bad press’, beware- even though the cereal promotes a healthy lifestyle and diet, sugar content will be almost 5 times higher than with the original Cheerio’s recipe according to the article.
To view the complete article (in PDF format), click here.
Image source: BBC News