Whole Grains Shown to Improve Gut Microbiota and Immune Response in New Study

Whole Grains Shown to Improve Gut Microbiota and Immune Response in New Study
Consuming a diet rich in whole grains rather than refined grains has been shown to bring modest improvements to the gut microbiota and to reduce inflammation — and could potentially be a management or preventative tool for certain diseases like inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Researchers at the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University in Boston showed that adults who consumed whole grains also reduced their risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and certain types of cancer, as well as improving some immune responses. The study, titled “Substituting whole grains for refined grains in a 6-wk randomized trial has a modest effect on gut microbiota and immune and inflammatory markers of healthy adults,” was published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Grains mostly include wheat, rice, oats and barley. Whole grains include the outer nutritious layer of grains and are found in whole-wheat flour, oatmeal and brown rice. Refined grains, on the other hand, are starches that have been processed and broken down, mainly to increase shelf life, through a process known as milling. Milling drains the starch of dietary fiber, iron and B-vitamins, although artificially enriching the grains can add iron and forms of B vitamins, but not the fiber lost in milling. Refined grains include white flour, white bread and white rice, among others. The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends
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