Monday, February 25, 2013

Ancient grains are good grains

Grains have become the new bad guys and gluten-free is the new must-have range of products for health and wellbeing. But have we got the whole story here? Could this perhaps be another gun going off half-cocked, just like the one that led to the plethora of fat-free, reduced-fat, low-fat products which had no effect whatever on the fat population?
But a new study that reports the potential antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity of Khorasan wheat, an ancient grain, has been hailed as ‘making great strides in documenting the significant health benefits of ancient wheat’.

Yep, that ancient stuff that was around before farmers started breeding for specific characteristics and long before mad scientists got involved in genetic manipulation is really good stuff. But how to get back to widespread consumption of the produce as nature intended? Seems to me that every time we’re reminded of the life-affirming qualities of natural, uncontaminated, unrefined produce, there are equal moves to keep chemical-laden, refined, adulterated and nutrient-poor produce top of consumers’ shopping lists. 

What would it take to keep sustainable agriculture and the slow food movement top of mind for shoppers and hailed as “absolutely must-support initiatives” by government? Well we can start by voting with our shopping dollar - start at the local organic farmers' markets or fill up your trolley at the whole food grocer or organic section of your supermarket. 

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