When it comes to weight loss, wheat bread can be a good choice to help you with your goals. Whole grain bread in particular provides the fiber that helps keep you full. Whatever bread you choose, so long as you’re maintaining a caloric deficit, you can lose weight.
What Should I Look for in Wheat Bread?
Looking at all of the different types of bread at the grocery store can be overwhelming! It’s hard to know which one to choose with so many options available. When deciding on what type of bread to purchase, you will want to look at the nutrition facts label as well as the ingredient list.
Fiber is an important part of a healthy diet and can contribute to weight loss. Unlike other carbohydrates that get broken down into sugar, fiber passes through the body intact. Eating foods high in fiber helps to regulate your blood sugar and keep your digestive system functioning well.
Since fiber can help you feel full, you won’t be tempted to eat as much. A high-fiber diet can help you lose weight. Check the nutrition facts label to see how much dietary fiber is listed.
The USDA recommends that adults get between 22-34 grams of fiber per day, depending on age and sex. Over 90 percent of American adults do not meet these recommendations. Look for bread that has at least 2-3 grams of fiber per slice.
You’ll also want to check the label to see how many calories are in each slice of bread. Most bread will range from 30-100 calories per slice, though this varies based on what kind it is. So long as you maintain a caloric deficit each day, you will be able to lose weight. Choosing a lower-calorie bread will make it easier to have a deficit.
Check the ingredient list and look for the word “whole” in the first ingredient. For example, whole wheat flour or whole grain flour will have lots of fiber. If the label just says wheat flour, without the word whole in front of it, this bread is more refined and lower in fiber.
Since sugars can contribute to weight gain, you’ll want to look for these in the ingredient list as well as the nutrition facts label. Check the ingredient list for sugar, honey, or corn syrup, and try to choose one that has minimal amounts.
The label will tell you the total amount of sugar as well as the added sugars–those that are not naturally occurring in the food. The less sugar, the better!
What Types of Bread Are Best for Losing Weight?
So long as you keep a caloric deficit each day, you can choose the bread you like and still lose weight. Choosing a bread that is low in sugar, high in fiber, and made with whole grains is a healthy option. Pumpernickel, rye, and whole wheat bread are all good choices.
How Much Bread Should I Eat?
For many people, bread is the ultimate comfort food, and it can be easy to overeat! Ideally, your diet will include a wide variety of foods to ensure you’re getting all the nutrients you need.
The USDA recommends that adults eat 6 servings of grains per day, with at least 3 of these being whole grains. One slice of bread or one tortilla is considered a serving.
When you are eating bread, pay attention to portion size. If you are buying pre-sliced bread, there is a range in how thin the slices are. If you are slicing it yourself, consider how large you are making each slice.
Also, consider the size and amount of other bread products you are consuming. This includes tortillas, English muffins, and bagels.
What About Homemade Bread?
Making your own bread can be a great way to control how healthy it is and the number of calories in it. You can choose how much sugar–if any–you add to your bread and you can opt for whole-grain flours.
Homemade bread can be made in a breadmaker or a loaf pan in the oven. There are endless variations to try. One thing to keep in mind is that homemade bread does not have the same preservatives that many store-bought loaves will, so it will not stay fresh as long. Slicing and freezing part of the loaf can be a good storage option.
What Are Some Good Alternatives to Bread?
If you are looking for a lower-calorie alternative to bread, there are plenty of options. You can find tortillas that are low in calories which often come in small sizes to help with portion control. Sprouted grain or Ezekiel bread can be another good choice.
Lettuce wraps are a popular replacement for bread or tortillas. Just put your normal sandwich filling on a large leaf of lettuce and wrap it up.
Portobello mushrooms are a low-calorie alternative to buns. Their large size makes them ideal for holding burger patties. Simply grill or bake in the oven then top with a veggie or meat burger!