Fluffy buns, luxuriously crispy fresh rolls, irresistible Italian pizza and without spaghetti beloved by all without exception! What do these dishes have in common? Apart from the fact that we terribly enjoy the taste, wheat flour is loved by taste buds, but not so by intestinal microflora! Here are a few facts that you may not know about flour.
1. Flour effectively works as high-quality adhesive.
Flour contains gluten. Gluten is a protein mainly to be found in cereals. It works as an adhesive, making food flexible. For some people wheat flour and products made from it may be hard to digest thanks to insufficient amount of digestive enzymes. Nowadays the problem with gluten is that thanks to pesticides, herbicides and other fertilisers it is more durable and therefore difficult to digest. Therefore, he who says that people ate flour from time immemorial causing no problems, is right only in part. People did indeed eat flour, but not in the form as served nowadays. But tell that to the French...
2. Wholemeal flour is healthier but has the same effect on the body as white flour.
Wholemeal flour is healthier, because it contains more fibre and nutrients. White one is more processed. But the final effect on the body is identical; it breaks down relatively quickly to simple molecules of sugar. On the other hand, wholemeal bakery products may sometimes be more difficult to digest.
3. Wholemeal products sold in shops are often made of white flour.
White flour is cheaper than wholemeal one. Therefore, in shops a simple trick is often used: bran is added to white flour, producing a "kind of” wholemeal bread - actually from white flour. In order to acquire a more "wholemeal look", caramel is added to give it a nice brown tint. You then think how healthily you are eating, but the opposite is true!
4. A lifetime of gluten-free diet has no negative effects on health.
People often think that if they remove any traditional part of their diet, they will get rid of one problem, but another will appear somewhere else. That is definitely not the case with wheat flour. Wheat or gluten is not needed for life at all and if you consume other proteins, lifelong absence of gluten will have only positive effects on the body.
5. Ayurveda: Flour from supermarket chains is old!
According to Ayurveda, the problem with white flour is nowadays mainly bound to its too long a period of storage. For it to provide something to the body and not be just a sticky material, it should be consumed within 15 days from milling. Flour purchased in a store is definitely older. Ayurveda avoids white flour completely and in the preparation of food only raw wholemeal wheat flour is used. Finely milled white flour does not contain the peel of wheat grains, sticking to the walls of the stomach and the intestines, where it causes problems. For the flour to be easier to digest and for the resulting product to be lightweight, the dough should be left to rest for two hours before its treatment by heat. The stomach and intestines will thus be burdened less.
Source: MUDr. Martin Beránek, nutritional adviser Eva Westerhuis Hausler, book Ayurveda, Healing cuisine, author Harish Johari.