Health And Hope

Health And Hope

Using The Gifts Of Creation

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> Grains

Food as medicine


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Trust in God

The hope perspective

If there is a God why does he allow suffering?

Bread is the ‘staff of life’.

This is what the proverb says. And it is true. We need to eat grains for energy. Have you ever thought how many there are and the different forms they take? - flakes, and flours, puffed or popped. A wide variety is helpful as each has different good things to offer the body. WHEAT is well known, as most of our bread comes from wheat flour. For grains to do us the best good, we need all the elements of the in their natural combination Much of what we call flour has been processed to remove the elements that are beneficial or nutritious - like the bran and the tiny germ.
Wholemeal bread has all these things, and in the right proportions as it uses the actual wheat grain in its entirety. It contains the starch the protein, the fibre, and vitamins and oils. White flour is essentially just the starch with some protein. Brown flour is the same plus some bran. Wholemeal flour, though, is the complete grain.

There are other grains too, which are beneficial to us. Try to use a variety in a week. OATS are often rolled and they are used in porridge. A natural oat cereal like porridge for breakfast is more sustaining than a snack breakfast. Other foods can let us down about midmorning, but oats keep the energy levels high for a longer time.
What are some of the other cereals to choose from? RYE is easy to find in a variety of crispbreads, but always choose the ones that are whole rye, usually the darker ones. Rye bread is sometimes available from Germany. Then, there is RICE. Whole rice or what is known as brown rice is the best, as it is complete and has the bran (or the polishings) with it. MAIZE is another useful grain. It is sometimes called CORN using the American name. Pop corn is the commonest whole grain corn product. Pot BARLEY is used in stews.


Have you ever tried making your own bread?

Here is a recipe that is probably the easiest of all. It was designed by Doris Grant to make wholesome breadmaking easy for anyone. It makes a moist loaf, that does not have to be kneaded for endless minutes. The smell of new bread is enticing indeed.

4 ½ C (cups) strong whole-wheat bread flour. (Check the label or ask advice.)
1t (teaspoon) salt
1 sachet easy to-use-yeast. (Follow the instructions on the sachet)
1 1/3C cold water mixed with
2/3C boiling water - plus 1t black strap molasses.

- Lightly oil 2 x 1lb loaf tins.
- Place flour and salt in a bowl.
- Mix the dry and liquid ingredients and add the rest of the water to form a dough. (Some flours need a little more water to make a dough.)
- Knead until the texture of the dough is uniformly smooth.
- Divide the dough in two lumps, shape and fit them into the prepared tins.
- Set the oven to Mark 6, 400F, 200C.

Cover the dough with clingfilm and place somewhere warm, and free from draughts, for 20-30 minutes. The dough should rise to 1/2 inch from the top of the tins. Lift off the cling film carefully, and place in the oven, and bake for 30 minutes. The loaf will be done when the bottom sounds hollow when you tap it. A very satisfying sound!!

Turn out on to a cooling rack and allow the loaf to cool completely.

You are less likely to overeat when you have sandwiches from home made bread. They are naturally, but satisfyingly good. A slice of wholemeal bread is a recommended healthy accompaniment to all meals, in particular for younger or physically active people.

NB If you have an allergy to wheat it is worth trying spelt, an ancient form of wheat without the modern hybridisation.

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