15 Healthy Whole-Grain Foods (Including Gluten-Free Options)

Written by Resurchify | Updated on: January 09, 2023

15 Healthy Whole-Grain Foods (Including Gluten-Free Options)

Wheat grain that has been completely digested has all of its original nutrients, including fiber, protein, and other beneficial compounds. There are several ways in which it improves our health and happiness. The advantages of eating whole wheat grain will be discussed below.

The term "whole wheat grain" refers to a kind of grain that utilizes the whole wheat berry in its production. The grain kernels have three primary parts: the endosperm, the bran, and the germ. Whole wheat grain still has both the bran and the endosperm. The combination of these factors makes it a very healthy food choice.

Three distinct grain products function:

Whole Grain

The three parts of the grain—the bran, the germ, and the endosperm—are all present in whole grains.

Refine Grain

The bran and germ have been removed during the milling process that produces refined grains. While this makes them smoother to the touch and extends their shelf life, it also removes vital nutrients from the grain.

Enriched Grains

When grains are refined and then given additional nutrients after processing, these grains are referred to as "enriched grains." It is possible to revitalize several of the nutrients which have been lost during the refining process, but the fiber that is taken cannot be replaced. The majority of refined grains have enrichment added to them.

When you eat whole grains, you get the kernels of the grain in their entirety, along with the rough outer coating of the grain known as bran. Because they have not been refined, these grains still contain a significant amount of their original nutrients. They are a more nutritious staple food that is included in diets because they include fiber, protein, and essential minerals.

Examples Of Whole Grains


  • Barley
  • Buckwheat
  • Bulgur (cracked wheat)
  • Millet
  • Whole-wheat bread, pasta, or , crackers
  • Whole wheat, oats, corn, faro
  • Graham flour
  • Oatmeal, rolled or steel cut
  • Brown rice
  • Wild rice
  • Popcorn
  • Quinoa

There is growing evidence that there are good impacts on health that may be achieved by decreasing the intake of refined grains in support of whole grains and other sources of carbohydrates that are less processed and of better quality.

Benefits Of Whole Grains

Whole wheat is an excellent option for meals since it has a low glycemic index and a high concentration of key elements. In addition to this, it contains a lower percentage of fat compared to refined grains.

  • The soluble fiber found in abundance in whole grains helps to keep blood pressure and cholesterol levels normal while also reducing hunger.
  • Antioxidants found in large quantities in whole grains have been linked to a reduced risk of cancer and reduced inflammation.
  • Encourage good digestive function.
  • Protect your heart's health.
  • Regulate blood pressure
  • Maintain a normal level of blood pressure.
  • Keep your weight at a healthy level.
  • Strengthen one's immunity against illness.
  • Support a healthy state of the skin
  • Reduce the probability of having a stroke.
  • Reduce the chances of developing type 2 diabetes.
  • Bring down the levels of chronic inflammation.
  • Could decrease the risk of developing cancer.
  • It is important to include whole wheat in your diet since it helps in the following areas:
  • It is recommended that cholesterol levels be lowered.
  • By adopting these precautionary measures, you may reduce your risk of acquiring diabetes.
  • Maintain a Healthy Sugar Level in the Blood
  • Take charge of your weight.

These elements each have their uniimpact on our bodies, including the following:

  • By lowering the rate at which starch is converted into glucose, bran and fiber are able tocan sugar levels from swinging dramatically.
  • Fiber not only helps in the evacuation of excess cholesterol and other forms of waste from the digestive tract, but it also assists in the decrease of total cholesterol levels.
  • A smaller risk of developing blood clots, which may lead to more serious conditions including heart attacks and strokes, may be associated with a diet high in fiber.
  • There is some evidence to suggest that the phytochemicals and essential minerals such as magnesium, selenium, and copper that are found in whole grains may help prevent some forms of cancer.

Essential Whole Grain Food Products

Whole Wheat

  •  This should not be difficult to understand provided that you do not fall for the tricks used by food marketers. You simply need to look for the label that states "100% whole wheat" on products like bread and pasta to know that they include whole wheat. The consumption of multigrain and wheat products is not sufficient to meet the requirements.
  • Whole wheat is a healthier alternative than refined wheat because it has a bigger percentage of vital elements. Refined wheat, on the other hand, does not contain any critical nutrients at all.
  • Nutritional value: anti-oxidants, vitamins, minerals, and fiber.

Whole Oats

  • Oats are one of the healthiest foods you can ingest, right up there with whole grains, which are among the heathiest foods you can eat overall. They are naturally free of gluten and have a high vitamin and mineral content in addition to a high fiber content. Oats, in particular, contain a significant amount of antioxidants.
  • The consumption of this antioxidant has been linked to both a reduction in the chance of developing colon cancer as well as a reduction in blood pressure.
  •  These foods may also have a high concentration of beta-glucans, a kind of soluble fiber that has been linked to a variety of health benefits and which may be found in large quantities in these foods.

Brown/Raw Rice

  • Brown rice, which includes brown-scented varieties brown-scented and jasmine, should be used whenever it is feasible to do so. Rice that is red and black in color is even more unusual. Both types of rice are high in antioxidants and are considered to be whole grains. Although wild rice is technically a grass, it may be consumed in the same manner as a grain, and it is rich in B vitamins such as niacin and folate.
  • Brown rice is a kind of whole grain rice that has had the outer hull, which is inedible, removed. The outer hull or husk of this kind of rice is removed, but the bran and germ layers, which are responsible for the brown or tan color of rice, are left on.
  • Rice that has had its hull, bran layer, and cereal germ removed to produce white rice is still the same grain. Whole rice with uniquely colored outer layers is referred to as reduced, gold rice, and black rice, respectively. Purple rice is another name for black rice.


  • Regardless of its name, more so that true cereal grains, this seed is classified as a pseudo-cereal.
  • Buck pseudo-create is an excellent source of several essential minerals, including manganese, magnesium, copper, phosphorus, iron, B vitamins, and fiber. They are also gluten-free by definition.
  • In addition, the shell of buckwheat is rich in carbohydrates, a form of dietary fiber that travels with you to the colon and nourishes the good bacteria there.

Unseasoned Barley

  • A five-week USDA research found that compared to individuals who did not eat whole barley, those who did so had a roughly 10% reduction in their cholesterol levels.
  • Whole (or hulled) barley and pearled barley are the two most common versions of this grain. Only hulled barley, which undergoes minimum processing, is classified as a whole grain.
  • Fiber, B vitamins, and minerals including selenium, manganese, magnesium, zinc, copper, iron, phosphorus, and potassium are all abundant in hulled barley. Make sure it's whole grain barley and not "pearled," which has had the bran and germ removed.


  • More of it is produced than wheat or rice, making it a global staple.
  • Corn in its natural, unrefined form is an excellent source of several nutrients, including manganese, magnesium, zinc, copper, phosphorus, potassium, B vitamins, and antioxidants. It is also naturally free of gluten.
  • Antioxidants like lutein and zeaxanthin may be found in high concentrations in yellow corn. Multiple studies have demonstrated that these antioxidants can protect against cataracts and macular degeneration, the two most common causes of blindness.
  • Whole corn also promotes a balanced microbiome in the gut. Enzymes are abundant in yellow corn as well.
  • Popcorn is the most convenient method for consuming it. The kernels can be purchased and popped either in a microwave using a paper bag or in the traditional manner on a burner.


  • Quinoa, a grain native to South America, has also been called a "superfood."
  • Compared to modern grains like whole wheat or oats, this ancient grain is much more nutritious.
  • Antioxidants like quercetin and kaempferol are prominent in quinoa and help protect the body against free radicals. Several degenerative disorders, including chronic inflammation, cardiovascular disease, and cancer, have been related to these molecules.
  • Quinoa is also one of the few plant sources of complete proteins, meaning it provides all nine of the body's required amino acids. For this reason, it's a fantastic choice for vegans and vegetarians.  
  • This traditional South American superfood packs more protein per serving compared to any other grain and provides 522 mg of omega-3 fatty acids per uncooked cup.


  • The ancient grain millet is most often associated with its use in sunflower seeds.
  • In contrast, it has been consumed by mankind for thousands of years and serves as a staple food in many countries such as India, China, Africa, Ethiopia, Nigeria, and the United States.
  • Millet is a fantastic food choice since it contains a wide range of nutrients, including magnesium, manganese, zinc, potassium, iron, B vitamins, and fiber. It is also naturally free of gluten.
  • Millet consumption has been associated with several health advantages, among them but not limited to: less inflammation, lower blood triglycerides, and better blood sugar management.

Wheat Bulgur (Cracked Wheat)

  • The cracked wheat known as bulgur is often used in Middle Eastern cooking.
  • This healthy grain is often used in tabbouleh and other grain-based salads. It’s cooked manner-like-like it has more of a quinoa texture.
  • Bulgur is high in magnesium, manganese, and iron while having a lowlow-fatntent. It's a fantaslow-fatrce of dietary fiber as well.
  • Recent studies have shown a correlation between eating more complete grains like bulgur and having a decreased risk of inflammation, cardiovascular disease, and some malignancies including colorectal cancer.

Whole Rye

  • Rye, a relative of wheat, has been a staple food for countless generations.
  • Mineral content is often higher than in wheat, and there are fewer carbofewerates. When compared to other whole grains, rye provides the most nutrients per calorie. It delivers approximately 50% of the daily required iron intake and has four times as much fiber as regular whole wheat.
  • The digestion process is slowed by dietary fiber, and the result is a more gradual increase in blood sugar rather than sudden spikes, according to research.
  • Light, medium, dark, rye meal, and pumpernickel are only a fewa of the varieties of rye flour available. Dark rye flour, rye meal, and pumpernickel flour are more likely to be whole grain than their lighter and medium counterparts.


  • This Arabic grain is a very high-fiber, low-carbohydrate alternative to brown rice. Freekeh is made from young, roasted kernels that have been gathered at the peak of their flavor.
  • Compared to other grains, they have a higher concentration of beneficial nutrients including the immune-boosting mineral selenium.
  • Freekeh is a prebiotic meaning it promotes the development of bacteria in the gut that help with digestion after it reaches the stomach.
  • Wheat is gathered when it is still young and green, while the grains and seeds are still tender, and then stacked and dried in the sun. Only the straw and chaff in the heaps are ignited so that the remaining materials may be used.
  • The high moisture level of the seeds means they won't burn in these circumstances. After being roasted, wheat is threshed and dried in the sun so that its flavor, texture, and color are consistent.


  • The plant known as sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) is classified as a cereal grain and belongs to the grass family (Poaceae). Its delectable starchy seeds are known by a variety of different names.
  • All of these types of sorghum can be traced back to the original plant, which most actually o in Africa, where it is an important food source.
  • Grain sorghums have been used as food, grass sorghums are manufactured for hay and fodder, and broomcorn is used to make brooms and brushes.
  • Broomcorn is used to make brooms and brushes. Sorghum is known by a wide variety of names in India.


  • Farro is a chewy grain with a taste that is described as nutty. It is strong in protein and fiber.
  •  Because it contains magnesium, which is beneficial to the health of your muscles and bones, and vitamin B3, which is beneficial to the digestion of carbs, fats, and proteins, farro is an excellent supplement to any meal and an excellent post-workout recovery meal.
  • A serving size of a quarter cup of the grain offers 6 grams of protein; however, persons who suffer from celiac disease should not take it since it does contain some gluten.
  •  A serving size of a quarter cup of grain s 6 grams of protein.
  •  Farro that has been cooked may either be used as the base for a meal that also includes fish or meat, or it can be added to a salad as an additional grain option.


  • This super grain is gluten-free (it's a seed), and it's packed with protein, iron, calcium, and fiber. Also works as a substitute for cereal or spaghetti.
  • Magnesium, iron, manganese, and selenium are all present in high concentrations in raw amaranth.
  •  Cooking drastically reduces the nutrient content of food, which retain a considerable degree of content. Amaranth leaves, once cooked, are high in vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, and manganese, and moderate in folate, iron, magnesium, and potassium.
  • When grown in a longitudinal orientation, amaranth may reach heights of three to eight feet and has a cylindrical, succulent, fibrous stem that, when mature, is hollow and has grooves and bracteoles.
  • Its flower, leaf, and stem colors range from maroon to scarlet, and their pigmentation is remarkable. Its name comes from the color of its flowers.

Whole-Wheat Couscous

  • The couscous most people are familiar with is really a kind of pasta produced from refined wheat flour.
  • Whole-wheat couscous, which can be bought in most grocery shops, is the best option when considering nutrition.
  • Whole-grain cereals provide 5 more grams of fiber per serving than their refined counterparts.
  • Semolina, which is extracted from durum wheat (the toughest of all kinds of wheat), is historically used to make couscous because it is resistant to being ground by the millstone.
  • Wet semolina is rolled into tiny pellets with dry flour to prevent sticking, and then the mixture is sieved. Any couscous pellets that are too tiny to be considered completed granules are rerolled and dusted with dry semolina before being reformed into pellets.
  • Making couscous from semolina requires a lot of time and effort, but it can be done. Traditionally, couscous is prepared by huge groups of people working together over the course of many days to produce a significant quantity that may be stored and consumed for months.
  •  In certain cases, homemade couscous may need to be rehydrated while cooking; this is done by boiling it in a pot of stew until it absorbs enough moisture to become light and fluffy.

Tips For A Quick Cookout

  • Try using a whole-grain baking mix to whip up some fast pancakes, biscuits, or even chicken and dumplings. Biscuit isn't available in a whole-grain version (yet), but there are plenty of other brands.
  • Slowly start substituting the whole guns. Going for broke on the first try might backfire with picky eaters. Split your spaghetti in half and cook it using whole wheat in the other half.
  • Use breadcrumbs made from whole wheat bread. Use a food processor to turn one slice of 100% whole-wheat bread into about 1/2 cup of breadcrumbs. You may use it to bread chicken cutlets, bindmeatloaff, and meatloafasseroles like mac and cheese. Toss with olive oil, garlic, and herbs to bring out the nutty flavor. Some people would never consider eating whole-wheat bread, but who may like it in the form of a garlicky, crispy breadcrumb topping?
  • Cook inside. For a healthier option, try making your next batch of muffins, bread, or cookies using whole-wheat flour. Avoid going all hog on whole wheat because of flavor and texture concerns. First, mix some whole-wheat flour with regular flour.
  • Whole-wheat bran flakes, shredded wheat, and oatmeal are a few excellent examples of cereals that may be included in your morning meal that are considered to be full-grain options. Some bran flakes may only include the bran and not the whole grain.
  • As an alternative to normal bagels, you may choose toast or bagels made with healthy grains. Substitute muffins made from whole-grain cereals and baked with less fat for the pastries.
  • When you create sandwiches, use bread and buns that have a high fiber content. Make the switch from tortillas produced with white flour to ones prepared with whole wheat instead.
  • As an alternative to white rice, you may want to try using quinoa, brown rice, wild rice, barley, or bulgur.
  • Wild rice and barley may be used as the primary component in a variety of dishes, including stews, casseroles, and salads.
  • The addition of nutritious grains, such as cooked brown rice or bread crumbs prepared with whole grains, may make meat and poultry dishes more filling.
  • Try using rolled oats or crushed whole-wheat bran cereal as a substitute for dry bread crumbs in your recipe.


Whole grains give a "whole bundle" of health benefits, in comparison to refined starches, which have had their beneficial components removed during the processing. If the only kinds of grains you eat are whole types, you may need to take some extra precautions to make sure you receive enough of the B vitamin known as folic acid. Folic acid is often not added to whole grains, although the majority of processed grain products already contain is important to keep an eye out for folic acid that has been added to certain ready-to-eat cereals and other whole grains; these should be prioritized. Make sure you consume a lot of fruits, vegetables, and beans since they are some of the best sources of folate. Folic acid supplementation is very beneficial for women who are of reproductive age or who have a high probability of becoming pregnant shortly.




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