On Whole Wheat Flour

As I was growing up flour was a big part of our meals. For breakfast my mom would make the tallest and best biscuits one could imagine and a big bowl of white gravy, of course made with flour and bacon grease. She had, not very often, made donuts. There’s also pancakes and waffles all made with flour. Lunch was sometimes built around sandwiches. And dinner we might have homemade yeast rolls or other flour products. Maybe potato cakes or hoecakes, yum! On occasion mom would make a delicious cobbler, blackberry or peach. Of course there were cakes, pies and other baked goods.

So how do we come by flour? As I read about breads and the flours that made them I found some amazing, distressing information. Flours are produced by crushing grains into fine powders. And those powders form the basis not just for breads and buns, but for a huge variety of processed foods, from cereals, crackers and pizza dough to cookies, cakes and ice cream cones. As a result, the average American now eats 10 servings of refined grains each day.

As the national appetite for flour has inched up, so has the incidence of diet-related illnesses, such as obesity, heart disease and diabetes. Coincidence? Not really!

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