Basic characteristics of wheat
Wheat (Tritticum spp.) is an ancient grain that has grown more in the period before Christ, and it was the main cash crop, which feeds many people.
It is believed that wheat originates from the soil of south-western Asia, because the archaeological finds discovered on the territory of Turkey, Egypt, Iraq, as well as China. Later, when Columbus first stepped on the soil of America, began to trade routes and transfers to the ground of USA, from where it spread to the south, to Australia.
Today, wheat is grown throughout the world as the second most important grain for bread, rolls, pasta, flour, bran, germ, but also now widely used in the macrobiotic diet as cooked grains of wheat.
Nutritional value of wheat
Wheat grain is built from 3 parts:
- An outer shell (shell)
- Endosperm (inner layer)
Outer protective covering of wheat grain makes about 10% of the total weight of the grain of wheat. During the industrial processing of wheat flour it been removes, and in a case that is not removed, it gets the integral wheat flour. As a special product, shell of wheat grain is used for production of wheat bran.
The endosperm is the inner core of wheat grains, which makes 85% of the total weight of the grain of wheat. It was built from the protein works, oil and ferments. In the inner part of the endosperm is starch to a greater extent, as well as proteins that produce a sticky consistency when making dough from wheat flour.
The third part of the wheat grain is the germ, accounting for 3% of the total weight of the grain of wheat. The germ of wheat is high in protein, vitamins E and B, and contains a specific amount of fats and oils.
Vitamin part of the grain of wheat builds:
- Vitamins of the B complex (B1, B3, B6, B5, B9)
- Fat-soluble vitamins (E, A, D, K)
Mineral composition of wheat builds:
The protein composition of wheat is good quality because it contains many essential amino acids important for the normal functioning of the body, especially the nervous system.
Mineral composition of wheat is the most represented in the tread grains of wheat and wheat bran, while the germ is lists as an energy source, because it contains enough starch and fat in itself.
The shell of wheat contains vegetable insoluble fibers that have a significant role in the processes of digestion and regulate the metabolism of insulin.
Whole grain of wheat is an excellent source of natural phytosetrogens, which are important for women during menopause, as well as expansion of already reduced levels of estrogen in the body. Also, phytoestrogens affect the strengthening of bones, strengthening the blood vessels and prevents the appearance of brain stroke and heart attack.
Wheat bran is rich in dietary fiber, which speeds up the metabolism; it also contains lignans, phytoestrogens, which have anticancer property especially in the prevention of breast cancer and colon cancer.
The germ of wheat is rich in vitamin E and antioxidants, which play a role in the body to protect cells from deterioration and aging.
Health Benefits of Wheat
1. Positively influence on digestion, bowel movements, preventing the occurrence of hemorrhoids, colon cancer, prevents constipation, allergy to gluten
2. It cures skin changes
3. It lowers cholesterol, strengthens blood vessels
4. Prevents aging and cell degeneration
5. Strengthens immunity and affect the growth and development of young organism
6. Improves mood
7. It accelerates the metabolism of estrogen, and prevents the formation of tumors of the breast and ovary
8. Wheat should eat convalescing, during recovery from illness as well as skinny people who want to get fat
How to use wheat in the diet
In order to preserve all the minerals, vitamins and nourishing nutrients from wheat, it is best used in fresh condition, because with the heating many nutritients have been lost from the wheat.
Whole grain wheat can be cooked in a little water (steamed) and like that eat with the addition of chopped dried fruit, cocoa, coconut, cinnamon.
Sprouts of wheat can be grown at home, in the following way:
Wet cloth folded and put on a plate, and on it put wheat. A plate has to be keeping on warm, and patch needs to be constantly moist enough. Under these conditions, wheat sprouts for 2-3 days or when germs reach a length of about 1 cm.
Germs can eat in addition to salads; can be put into smoothies and yogurt for breakfast.
How to keep the wheat?
Grains need to be stored in tightly sealed containers in a cool, dry and dark place for about 6 months. Bran and germ is well kept in the refrigerator, not more than 3 months in tightly sealed containers because lower temperatures protect against rancidity. Sprouted wheat use immediately, and in the refrigerator may be stored in a plastic bag for 2-3 days.