Whole-grain foods have always been considered a healthy part of the diet. Only recently have epidemiologic and other data shown that whole grains have a role in preventing cardiovascular disease, diabetes, some types of cancer, and even obesity. What nearly all consumers and most health professionals fail to realize is that whole grains deliver as many if not more phytochemicals and antioxidants than do fruits and vegetables. Healthy People 2010 (DHHS) recommends 3 servings of whole grains per day. Because the average intake in the United States is less than 1 serving per day, health professionals must mount an active campaign to help consumers better understand the important health benefits of whole grains and work to increase their intake in the diet.
How to give whole grains the boost they deserve
Julie Miller Jones, PhD, CNS, LD, is a professor of nutrition at the College of St. Catherine in St. Paul, Minn, and an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Food Science and Nutrition, University of Minnesota. Professor Jones is a past president of the American Association of Cereal Chemists (AACC). She is current chair of the Nutrition Division of the Institute Food Technologists and worked actively on the Dietary Fiber Definition for the AACC/ International Life Sciences Institute. She is actively working with others to form a consortium to increase the intake of whole-grain foods.
Marla Reicks, PhD, RD, is an Associate Professor, Department of Food Science and Nutrition, University of Minnesota, St. Paul.
Judi Adams, MS, RD, is President, Wheat Foods Council, Parker, Colo.
Gary Fulcher, PhD, is a Professor, Department of Food Science and Nutrition, University of Minnesota, St. Paul.
Len Marquart, PhD, is a Senior Scientist, General Mills Inc., Bell Institute of Health & Nutrition, Minneapolis, Minn.
Corresponding author: Julie Miller Jones, PhD, CNS, LD, Professor of Nutrition and Food Science, College of St. Catherine, 4030 Valentine Ct, Arden Hills, MN 555112.