If you’ve been eating brown bread instead of white under the presumption that it’s better for your health, you might want to think twice about it.
Researchers from Israel recently published a study in the journal Cell Metabolism that tested the effects of white and brown bread on the body, and found that sticking with whole wheat might not be the best option for everybody. Instead, it depends on the individual.
The study tracked 20 participants who had to fill 25 per cent of their calorie intake with either white refined bread or whole wheat sourdough for one week. After, the participants were asked to switch the type of bread they were eating. Some of the subjects had better blood sugar levels with white bread, while others had better blood sugar levels with whole wheat — so, really, there’s no such thing as “healthier bread,” only different types of stomachs.
“The findings for this study are not only fascinating, but potentially very important, because they point toward a new paradigm: different people react differently, even to the same foods,” said Eran Elinav, one of the study’s lead authors and a researcher in the Department of Immunology at the Weizmann Institute of Science. “To date, the nutritional values assigned to food have been based on minimal science, and one-size-fits-all diets have failed miserably.”
The hope is that by better understanding how each individual reacts to different foods, we’ll eventually be able to find a diet that’s truly tailored for each person.
Rosie Schwartz, a Canadian dietitian, explained that researchers will still need to test the effects of other breads on the body. “It might have gotten different results if we were looking at rye, barley, oats for example, all of which contain soluble fibre and could change what happens with the blood sugar,” she said.
Until then, you’ll just have to guess which is best for you the good old-fashioned way: with trial and error.