Background. We summarise evidence concerning the health effects of whole grain intake, as well as implications for Norway. All forms of whole grain products contain both the bran and the germ, which are rich in nutrients, in addition to the starch-rich endosperm. However, refined grain consists only of the endosperm, which contains far fewer nutrients. Material and methods. Review of published epidemiologic and food consumption data concerning grain intake. Results. Recent epidemiologic investigations have found that whole grain intake is associated with reduced risk of several chronic diseases, especially cardiovascular diseases and diabetes. For example, the follow-up data of the cardiovascular disease study in Norwegian counties carried out during 1977 - 83 showed an inverse relationship between total mortality rates and eating whole grain bread. The United States Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration have endorsed statements that whole grain products can have positive health effects. About four times as much whole grain food is eaten in Norway as in the United States. However, many refined grain breads have recently been introduced in Norway. Interpretation. Norwegians should be encouraged to maintain or even increase their consumption of whole grain foods.
|Translated title of the contribution||Consumption of whole grain foods and chronic disease: An overview|
|Number of pages||3|
|Journal||Tidsskrift for den Norske laegeforening|
|State||Published - May 20 2004|