Why Are You Eating So Much Bread?

[ 0 ] April 5, 2016 |

One day after practice(while playing in the country of Kuwait), the team’s assistant coach Mohammed decided to take me out to eat at a local restaurant, instead of one of the American establishments where I was accustomed to eating.  I asked, “Coach where are we going?” and he replied in his best English, “I take care of you.  Don’t worry habibi.”  Habibi is a popular Arabic term of endearment which means “baby.”  This was the first time in my life that I had tried Arabic food so I was a bit nervous.  Upon ordering our food the waiter brought out “two big pans of freshly baked bread”.  I looked as if I had seen a ghost because I was sure that all of that bread was not meant for the two of us.  But when the coach started to dig into it, my suspicions went away.

There was absolutely no way that any human being could eat this amount of bread and still have room for a meal.  I ate so much bread that when the food came I could not take a single bite!  Coach laughed at me because I was not yet broken in to this custom and the Arabic style of eating.  When we left the restaurant I looked around me and noticed that many of the males had big stomachs after they ate.  In fact, my stomach was bulging and I am a mere 6 feet 4 inches and 190 pounds.

eating-breadIn Kuwait and most Arabic countries bread is served before every meal!  Sometimes they would just sit and eat bread with a side dish called “hummus” (Arabian dip made from chickpeas, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and garlic).  Before seeing the men’s stomach bloat at the restaurant, I was well aware that your stomach would bloat a little after each meal.  But, what I had seen was not the “normal after meal stomach inflation”.  I had eaten a significant amount of bread as a child but not at this rate.  These gentlemen drove me to see what was behind the bread and how bread should be eaten.

Bread contains microorganisms called yeasts which are one-celled bacteria that reproduce rapidly.  The reproduction process starts by dividing into two young yeasts rapidly and given the proper environmental conditions and enough sugar to eat, yeast can reproduce in five minutes or less and has the ability to give off carbon dioxide.  After reading this I had an entire new view on bread.  It does not take a rocket scientist to know that carbon dioxide is not something that should be ingested by humans in heavy doses.  According to Joy of cooking “there are 200 billion yeast cells in an ounce of yeast.  Due to its uncanny ability to reproduce itself in such a short period of time, only a small quarter ounce package of dry yeast is all it takes to make a one pound loaf of bread rise.”

The Whole Grains Council officials encourage eating whole grain bread (100% wheat) because it has more vitamins and twice the fiber than white bread.  From my studies it’s still going to cause sugar issues because it is gluten.  But it is the lesser of the evils.  This kind of bread is likely to be sold at a local organic store.  Be mindful that pizza, crackers, cake, chicken nuggets, fish sticks and many other products around the house contain dough and some form of yeast.

When I was younger my mother used to make a lot of “Muffin Mix Cornbread” so I could eat it with my beans and turnip greens.  After learning of what things are actually inside of the muffin mix, I decided to cut back on eating it as much, because I wanted to live a healthier lifestyle.  If you are trying to lose weight, cutback on certain bread intake and you will noticeably drop pounds.  White bread is a low-fiber starchy carbohydrate that you may want to consider avoiding, because this form of carbohydrate (i.e. white rice, processed grains, potatoes, etc) is more rapidly converted into simple sugars by your body.   For many, this may seem like an impossible task, but the more you cut back, the more evident and rapid will be your results.

To understand how much bread you are consuming read the back labels of all of the food that you consume.

If those labels contain; yeast, leavening agents, bread crumbs, dough, or anything that is associated with rising agents, chances are you are eating bread.  Once you read the labels and find out which products contain bread agents, try to go without eating those foods for about 7 days.  The no bread-product fast will allow you to fully comprehend the amount of bread you unknowingly consume on a daily basis.

(Article courtesy of, This Is Cochise © 2016)

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Category: Nutrition