Monday, July 19, 2010

Ninety Percent of Americans are NOT Getting Enough Whole Grains!

Are you one of the 9 out of 10 people in America who are not reaching the minimum recommendation for whole grains (the minimum rec. is 48 grams of whole grain, or 3 servings, per day)? Are you one of the 4 out of 10 Americans who consumes less than one whole grain product in a two week period?! (Source: Today's Dietitian Magazine)

Why are whole grains so important? Check out this article to find out.

A while back I posted a day of my eats and I realized I wasn't getting enough servings of grains, according to MyPyramid, which recommends that I consume about 6 servings of grains per day. I was (and still am) getting closer to 4 servings of grain, which is fine with me, as I think 6 servings is too much for my needs, personally. I was reaching the minimum amount of whole grains (3), so I still felt confident that I was eating right.

*** If you go to MyPyramid and find out how many servings of grains you need, just take half of that and that's how many servings of whole grains you should consume each day. ***

Apparently in 2009 there were about 3000 new products released with whole grains, compared to year 2000, which had only about 164 new products released with whole grains. In addition, many restaurants (including fast food) are jumping on the bandwagon and including whole grains on their menus. So we no longer have an excuse to not reach our whole grain goal.

It's a fact that most American's consume a majority of their whole grains at breakfast. I know I do!

1.5 servings of whole grain (24 grams) in my morning oats

I always look for the Whole Grains Stamp on my grain products. If a food has 8 grams of whole grain, or more, it can bare this symbol. LOOK FOR IT!

I love buying whole grain tortillas (for Nick only, because they contain wheat).

And when we don't go through them fast enough, I make them into tortilla chips.
(Cut them into rectangles, spray with EVOO, sprinkle with a dash of salt and some garlic powder).

Bake at a low temperature (~200) for about 20 minutes, while continuing to watch them in order to prevent burning.

Something Nick has been doing lately (and I'm very happy about) is buying the burrito bowl at Chipotle......

Then when we get home he adds it to our whole grain tortillas! It definitely beats the tortilla at Chipotle, which has ZERO whole grains, and tons of lard (I don't do this because I can't eat our tortillas. Does anyone know of a wheat-free tortilla?!).

Other Favorite Whole Grains



Brown Rice


Whole Wheat products

Wild Rice


What's your favorite whole grain and what are some ways you make sure to get them in your diet? While traveling for training I struggle to eat very healthy and I have found it hard to consume 3 servings of whole grain. An item I have been buying a lot is sushi made with brown rice. It's definitely helped me reach my 3 serving goal!

Coming Up/Training Update
I'm on my way back to Pittsburgh tomorrow morning, for my last week of training (well, sort of). As I said in my last post I will be starting at another store in Columbus (yeah!) at the beginning of August.

Thanks for reading everyone! Have a happy Monday :)


  1. I only buy whole grain products... so whenever I eat at home I make sure that I'm having whole grains. I guess for people who eat out a lot it's hard.
    great way to use tortilla... i need to try that, those chips are a great snack option! :)
    happy last week of training!

  2. That's so interesting that there are so many more whole grain products out today vs 10 years ago!

    I have been making an effort to eat more whole grains lately. I realized that I was eating almost entirely fruits and veggies and nuts so I bought some Ezekial bread and have been nibbling on that some.

  3. Great post! I love making our tortillas into pita chips as well!

  4. I'm one of the 90% that does not eat enough grains. Period. But when I do...oats are my grain of choice...the ultimate in comfort food!

  5. My list of favorite whole grains is pretty similar to yours! :) For lunch, I often add a salad on top of a bed of some leftover brown rice or quinoa. In fact, I almost always have some quinoa or rice in the fridge, so I can add it easily to meals.

    Have safe trip! You must be so excited that your training is almost over!!!!

  6. A great reminder to include more whole grains, Gina! I'm still amazed how hard it is to include whole grains in a diet - until I remember how HARD it is to get whole grains when eating out at a non "health food" restaurant. Even when the menu says "wheat bread", you know that ain't whole grains. I went to a restaurant once in VT and asked for whole grain pasta instead of regular, and the waitress laughed at me *eye roll* With the huge number of people eating a lot of their meals out, it's sometimes hard to get enough whole grains. That's why your tip to get whole grains at breakfast is a great one! :) My favorite whole grains are oats and quinoa. I'll be looking for brown rice sushi!

  7. Also, congrats on being almost done with training! :)

  8. ooh that Chipotle looks gooood!
    I always forget popcorn is a whole grain; thanks for the reminder :)

  9. Does mypyramid count oatbran as a whole grain? Because I know it's just the bran part of the oat, so it's not whole, but it's also the most concentrated source of protein and fiber so it's definitely healthy.

  10. Cool idea making the tortillas into tortilla chips! I need to do that!

    My favorite whole grains are oatmeal, brown rice and whole wheat bread!

  11. I love wild rice blends because there is so much that can be done with it, soups, stir-fry's, on it's own, faux risotto and so on.

    I was comparing the MyPyramid with Canada's food guide and found that it's very similar but yet different. It seems that the Canada Food guide requires smaller portions of some things compared to the MyPyramid for females aged 18-50. However the grains servings were the same, if not more on the Canadian Food guide - 6 to 7 servings. That does seem life a ton to me.

  12. I have never notice the grain symbol - now I need to look for it.

    There are days were I definitely reach my grain quota and days I don't - I just hope it all balances out.

  13. I love sushi with brown rice! I actually got into making sushi with brown rice a little while back. Quinoa is one of my favorites, and who doesn't love popcorn!? Popcorn with nutritional yeast and salt is my favorite.

  14. Great post! Surprisingly, I think I actually do get enough whole grains (I say surprisingly because I probably don't get enough of any other food group). I start almost every morning with oatmeal and include whole wheat breads and pasta in my diet as well.

  15. I eat sushi weekly but have to try it with brown rice!

  16. I never think to eat more popcorn to up my whole grains...I should do that! I agree, breakfast is where it's at! Always easy to get in a serving of whole grains there. We do the same thing with tortillas -- love the homemade tortilla chips! Literally ;)

    Have a wonderful last week in Pitts!

  17. i've been wanting to dabble with quinoa for the LONGEST time but to be honest i feeel like i wouldn't get enough "bang for my buck" i mean how big in my bowl can 1/4c get!

    what are your feelings on barley?

  18. I wish more Asian restaurants would incorporate whole's hard to find a good Asian restaurant that doesn't only use white rice!

    My favorite whole grain is oats, for sure! Barley is awesome, too. Even in oats.

  19. I go for whole grains whenever I can. My favorite is probably brown rice, but I also like oat bran. There are tons of good whole grains out there. Great idea with the tortillas and making them into chips.

  20. Whole Grain is all I eat. Popcorn is my fav, but I probably eat more oatmeal out of the list!!

  21. I'm a quinoa freak. It's definitely my favorite. I never get sick of it. I usually start my day with a big bowl of oats.

  22. It's so crazy that people get so few whole grains! They're probably like my MIL who will still only buy white bread. Her logic? It has less sugars in it. Talk about having blinders on!

    I really like brown rice, but I've experimented with quinoa recently with good results.

  23. Hi Gina!!! Great Post! I really love tortilla chips (the homemade version) and salsa, too. Lots of whole grain that way.

    I'm back now, finally. It's been 3really long and hard weeks, but well-worth it. The dog (Phineas or Phin for short sometimes) is doing really well. He is just awesome! He helps me walk; he brings me my socks and shoes; he turns on and off the light switch; he opens the cupbords;he opens the refrigerator; he plays with his ball and bones--when out of harness. He is so special. I have some pictures of him on my website at the following: and click on the "my phineas" tab. Thanks for asking Gina :)

  24. Great post! Love your tips for getting all those tasty whole grains in.

  25. Did anyone suggest Ezekiel Tortillas? Do those have wheat? I thought they were just sprouted grain...