The most healthy bread types are typically those that are rich in whole grains, fiber, and essential nutrients while being low in added sugars and unhealthy fats. Here are our picks for some of the healthiest bread options out there.
Whole Wheat Bread
Made from whole wheat flour, this bread retains the bran and germ, providing essential nutrients and fiber. It’s a great source of complex carbohydrates.
Whole Grain Bread
This bread is very similar to whole wheat bread, but whole grain bread can include a variety of whole grains like oats, barley, and rye, offering a much broader spectrum of nutrients.
This bread contains multiple grains, which can be a mix of whole grains and refined grains. When reaching for this bread, you want options with a higher proportion of whole grains.
Sprouted Grain Bread
Sprouted grains are seeds that have started to grow. This process can increase the nutrient content of the bread and even make it easier to digest. Ezekiel bread is a good example. It usually contains other grain types and legumes that provide even more nutrients, like spelt, barley, and lentils.
Rye or whole grain or 100% whole rye bread is a good source of fiber and has a low glycemic index compared to other bread types. It’s classified as a whole grain bread but is much denser than other bread types.
Traditional sourdough bread is made through a natural fermentation process, which can make it easier to digest for some. You want to find sourdough bread with minimal added ingredients.
If you have gluten sensitivity, gluten-free bread is made from alternative flours like rice, almond, or chickpea flour. However, when choosing this bread, watch for those that lack fiber and contain preservatives and other additives.
What to Look For In Healthy Bread
When shopping for healthy bread, there are several things you want to consider. To make the healthiest choice possible, look for some of the following when checking the labels.
- Whole Grains: Find bread made with whole grains like whole wheats, whole oats, whole rye, or whole barley. Whole grains are higher in fiber and nutrients compared to refined grains.
- Fiber Content: Higher fiber bread is good. You want to find options that have at least three grams of fiber per serving. The fiber helps with digestion, helps control blood sugar, and keeps you feeling feel.
- Short Ingredient List: Always check the ingredient list. You want simple and recognizable ingredients. Avoid unnecessary additives, preservatives, or artificial colors and flavors.
- Low-Added Sugar: Look for bread with little to no added sugars. Some breads contain added sugar for flavor, so watch and avoid sucrose, high fructose corn syrup, and honey.
Choosing healthy bread options provides you with many nutritional benefits and helps with heart health, weight management, and blood sugar control.