Why Whole Wheat is a Healthy Product
A wheat berry is composed of the outer bran layer, the germ and the endosperm.
It is rich in nutrients which are concentrated in the bran and germ. It contains
the entire B complex except for B12. The germ is especially rich in Vitamins B and E,
high quality protein, unsaturated fats, mineral and carbohydrates. The bran mainly contains
an insoluble carbohydrate, incomplete protein, traces of B vitamins and minerals, including
iron. The endosperm is the largest part of the grain and consists mostly of starch, incomplete
protein and trace amounts of vitamins and minerals. There can be a significant variation in
grain depending upon variety, crop year, soil type, and soil fertility.
White flour, in contrast, consists solely of the endosperm with all of the bran and germ
removed. There isn’t a lot of nutrition in the endosperm, since it only contains starch, a bit
of incomplete protein and trace amounts of vitamins and minerals. There are many articles and
books available which discuss the health and environmental benefits of whole wheat flour over
We prefer whole wheat ourselves for both health and taste. However, there are many people
who find it difficult to bake with 100% whole wheat flour. So this year we purchased a commercial
sifter, which we estimate sifts out about 50% of the bran, leaving the germ intact. At home,
Theresa used to make whole wheat bread with 80% whole wheat and 20% white. Now she is making
it with our Snake Mountain sifted bread flour. We figure that is still better for us than using
20% white flour.
We use our 100% Whole Wheat Pastry Flour for cookies. We grind our pastry flour finely, so
the texture is great, and the cookies retain the nutty flavor of the whole wheat. We have found
it easier to use the Lemon Fair Sifted Pastry flour for pie crusts, however. Try them out yourself
and see what you think!