It is lower in calories and higher in fibre
When it comes to food, they come in different colours but two of the main ones are white foods and brown foods.
In many cases, white foods have brown alternatives. For example, bread, pasta and rice.
While there is a slight difference in taste between the two, the real difference is the nutritional value.
Brown foods have rich sources of protein, fibre and carbohydrates.
In addition, they are packed with vitamins and minerals.
As a result, these nutritional values can have health benefits like lowering cholesterol and reducing the risk of health issues.
With different brown foods available, we look at 10 of the best to incorporate into your diet.
Brown rice contains husk which is the outer shell or coating of a seed. In addition, it is comprised of whole grain.
Due to the presence of bran, brown rice takes longer to cook than regular white rice.
However, it is much more nutritious. Eating 50 grams a day can significantly reduce the chances of getting Type 2 diabetes.
It is rich in fibre and calcium, containing various vitamins, minerals and beneficial compounds.
Other health benefits include weight loss and cholesterol regulation. This is due to its low glycaemic index, which is a rating system for foods containing carbohydrates.
The low calorie count and nutritional benefits make brown rice one of the best brown foods to have.
Wholemeal pasta is a healthy brown food to consume, however, more people prefer refined pasta.
This means that the wheat kernel has been stripped of the germ and bran along with many nutrients.
While refined pasta is more popular, wholemeal pasta is healthier.
It is lower in calories and higher in fibre, with a 100g serving providing a third of an adult’s total recommended daily allowance for fibre.
For this reason, it promotes fullness and may be more effective in reducing appetite than refined pasta.
Wholemeal pasta is also higher in other micronutrients such as manganese, selenium, copper and phosphorus.
These micronutrients are essential when it comes to promoting better health.
When combined with other ingredients, you will not notice the difference in taste but will start to experience a positive difference in health with regular consumption.
One of the most well-known brown foods is brown bread.
It is made using a large amount of whole grain flour, typically wheat.
Also known as wholemeal bread, the brown colour is caused by cerealine, which if neutralised, can form a white bread from bran-containing flour.
Brown bread contains a lot more fibre than white bread. This can help with digestion as well as lowering cholesterol.
Brown bread can also lower blood pressure and can also regulate blood sugar levels.
For those looking to improve such aspects, brown bread is an essential brown food to have.
Wholemeal Chapati Flour
Also known as atta, wholemeal chapati flour is typically used to make roti but you can also use it to bake cakes as a substitute for plain flour.
It is a rich source of nutrition, providing 15g of protein and 90g of carbohydrates in one cup.
As a result, wholemeal chapati flour has numerous health benefits.
It is rich in phosphorus, a major mineral that works closely with calcium. This makes for good bone health.
Wholemeal chapati flour is also good for diabetics due to its high magnesium content.
This can help improve insulin response and in turn, lower insulin resistance.
It even helps with skin health. Being rich in zinc, it helps repair any damage to the skin and can even reduce the physical signs of ageing.
This is a great substitute for maida or refined flour.
When it comes to mushrooms, there are a variety of ways to incorporate them into your diet.
Whether they are added to curries, sandwiches or eaten on pizzas, they are a healthy brown food to eat.
Brown mushrooms are fat-free, cholesterol-free as well as low in calories.
Different varieties mean that they offer different nutritional benefits. Some varieties include porcini, morel and shiitake.
Brown mushrooms are packed with antioxidants that can help protect the body from damaging free radicals that can cause conditions like heart disease.
They can also boost your immune system.
A combination of B vitamins ensure benefits for the heart, red blood cells and the digestive system.
As brown mushrooms are full of nutrients, they are one of the best brown foods to have in order to maintain a healthy diet.
Almonds are a widely cultivated seed of the almond tree, which is native to Iran but they are eaten by people around the world.
This type of nut can be eaten on its own, sprinkled over other food items or incorporated into other dishes.
But no matter what way you choose to eat them, they will provide health benefits.
They help fight cholesterol and diabetes. Almonds can also prevent kidney stones.
Almonds are sold both with their skin on and off.
When it comes to the healthiest option, almonds with the skin on is the one to go for as it is full of antioxidants.
While almonds are a good source of protein, they are not ideal for people with nut allergies.
Another brown food that provides health benefits is walnuts.
Compared to other brown foods, walnuts provide different health benefits like supporting good brain function and promoting a healthy gut.
Walnuts are also good for your hair and skin.
Incorporating walnuts into your diet can help with healthy ageing. This means it may help preserve physical function, such as walking and self-care abilities as you get older.
Walnuts are also said to increase sperm count if eaten regularly.
This is because walnuts can help counteract the potentially harmful effects of unhealthy eating habits.
This is a versatile brown food to try because it can be eaten as a quick snack or added to other foods.
Ginger is one of the most popular spices in Indian cuisine but it is also one of the healthiest.
Whether it is used fresh, dried, powdered, or as an oil, it has numerous health benefits.
The main one is its anti-inflammatory properties thanks to its high gingerol content.
It is no surprise that ginger is used in various forms of traditional and alternative medicine.
It is also helpful in soothing nausea, especially pregnancy-related sickness.
Ginger is known for being a carminative, a substance that promotes the elimination of excess gas from the digestive system, and is known to soothe the intestinal tract.
In addition to being prevalent in Indian food, ginger can also be added to cakes and biscuits, making it a versatile brown food to have.
Brown Chickpeas (Kala Chana)
Chickpeas are a staple in India and come in two main varieties: Kala Chana and Kabuli Chana.
Kala Chana appears black and is loaded with minerals such as manganese, iron and copper. The rich source of fibre, protein and carbohydrates make this legume a healthy brown food.
One of the main benefits is that it can reduce cholesterol due to its high soluble fibre content.
This also means that it can aid with digestion and reduces cravings, meaning that they are good for weight loss.
For losing weight, it is advised to drink water boiled with chickpeas. This will help reduce appetite and will cut down on calorie intake.
Kala Chana has a combination of antioxidants, anthocyanins, cyanidin, delphindin, phytonutrients that help in maintaining healthy blood vessels.
This as well as other minerals prevent arteries from being clogged up, ensuring good cardiovascular health.
Regularly incorporate them into your diet and start to feel the difference.
Rye Crackers & Bread
Rye crackers and rye bread are typically made with a combination of rye flour and rye grains.
Although the grain is not hugely popular, rye crackers and bread is quite well known and they have many health benefits.
It is a good source of soluble fibre, ensuring that digestion is smooth.
Fibre also helps you stay fuller for longer periods of time, preventing any snack cravings.
Rye bread and crackers also contain small amounts of zinc, pantothenic acid, phosphorus, magnesium, calcium, and other micronutrients.
Compared with regular bread, such as white and whole wheat, rye bread provides more micronutrients, especially B vitamins.
Adding rye bread and crackers to your diet may improve several aspects of heart health, as research has linked its intake to lower levels of heart disease risk factors.
What’s more, studies have shown that pure rye bread affects blood sugar levels to a lesser extent than white and wheat bread.
These brown foods contain various nutrients, in most cases, much more than their white food alternatives.
These nutrients subsequently provide a range of health benefits when consumed regularly.
Given that they taste great when combined with other ingredients, why not try them and see the difference.